How artists use Haru – Sarah Emily Porter
Written by Sandy, March 2021
When we first started working with Haru stuck-on design, we had the idea of inviting contemporary artists to come and create works of art at the showroom just using Haru tape. We didn’t know how it would work out, but it ended up with some amazing artworks, some of them on the ceiling and floor as well as the walls.
You can see them on the website here.
For those who came and saw what the artists and the tape could do, it was not just a revelation, but it lead to commissions for other works in people’s homes and offices. It was also an eye opener for the artists themselves. So recently I asked some them what they thought of Haru – what it was like to work with.
I started with Sarah Emily Porter. She works a lot with strong colours, so Haru’s big variety of colours was probably important.
‘There’s a great range of colours from pastels and metallics to bright, vibrant shades. I wanted to explore the full range of Haru tapes in my work so I picked a few colours from each range. It wasn’t a palette I had used before and it really challenged my thinking. I’ve always been a sucker for bright colours so I loved the Endless Ocean and Lipstick ranges.’
I wanted to find out more about how using Haru had stretched her way of working. What she did for us at the showroom was a time-based piece, where different layers were peeled off a full composition over its last few days, to leave a blank wall in the end. It was a sophisticated piece.
‘I wanted to think about the tape in the same way I think about paint, questioning how it is traditionally used and what its properties are so I could then exploit them in the final work. As a result I stuck to a very geometric design, but what I really liked was the way the tape has an ephemeral quality. It can be stuck and removed multiple times. It was this that led me to devise a piece of work that transformed over time.’
I asked was it at all difficult to work with, as a material? So very different from brushes and paints, for example.
‘The ability to peel off and remove the tape really added another dimension to the work and allowed the piece to not only sit as a wall decoration, but as a performative installation too. As new colours were removed each day the rhythm and composition transformed in a way that would never have been possible to capture in a painted mural.’
Something you might use for other projects then? Are there other circumstances that it might be good for?
‘Haru seems unique to other tapes as it has a translucent quality, so the colours are exposed on both sides of the tape. So there’s an opportunity for it to be used on glass to create layered work that transforms from one side to another – something I would love to explore in more depth in the future.’
Thanks so much. We’ll talk to some of the other artists soon.