Fusing Fantasy and Reality Through Collage Alison Bagg is a digital artist and creator of other-wordly, exquisitely appealing, fantastical collages. The Los Angeles based artist fuses realism and fantasy, and adopts a psychedelic merging of crystals, bathing and the galaxy to transport viewers to a dream-like setting. Working in the medium of photography and digital collage, Alison commends this medium since it allows her to simultaneously be playful, political and thought-provoking. She inserts herself into backgrounds where it is often difficult to tell which aspect of the image is real and which part has been constructed (or re-constructed) digitally. She tells The Plus Paper: Edited with Afterlight ‘I’m a big fan of analog collage, which also inspires my work – although my collage is primarily digital. Collage has the ability to tell a joke or make a juxtaposition or comparison you might not otherwise come across. It’s almost like a riddle or inside joke with the artist.’ The medium of collage allows the artist has the ability to merge and create new realities at their own free will. This is perfectly suited for Alison’s seamless display of the interconnection between human and nature, art and technology, serenity and excitement that is constitutive of her work. Healing through Art Alison has always had a love for art, and tells us that her Mother was also an artist. Throughout her childhood she remembers her Mother spent most days in the garage creating watercolour paintings. She lost her Mom when she was 17, which led to some tension as she was reluctant to face the emotions that came up through calling herself an artist and following in her Mom’s path. However, she came to see that in exploring this side of herself she is also exploring her relationship with her Mom, which she describes as ‘very healing work.’ The theme of healing can be seen throughout her work, most notably in the prominence of crystals, water and nature. The collages boast a meditative, dreamy feel, which is a natural consequence of Alison’s personal interests, beliefs and philosophies shining through her art. Alison attests to the power of sound healing and not only incorporates this in work, but also hosts sound baths in DTLA. Inspiration from nature Nature is a strong source of inspiration, although there is a highly technocised, futuristic feel to her work. This comes to life through the combination of desertscapes, cityscapes, trees, flowers, water and the moon and galaxy. The diversity and expansiveness of Alison’s travels is evident in her work, she tells us: ‘I have been lucky enough to travel the world to visit incredible natural wonders, and these experiences have stuck with me and greatly inform my art. One of my favorite places is Iguazu Falls on the border of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. Immersing yourself in the negative ions created by waterfalls is like a cellular and vibrational reset, and I love discovering pockets of beautiful flowing water (including hot springs!) all over the Earth. I am also very inspired by natural architecture.’ Inspired by surrealist art and magical realism, her signature style includes bright colors, space, patterns, portals etc. Alison’s love of colour manifests in rainbow skies, candly floss pinks Portals, movement and otherworlds Along with gaining inspiration from her travels, Alison learned from the great Man Ray, Dali, Magritte and spiritualist abstract artist Hilma af Klint. She studied futurism, and strives to create the feeling of movement and motion in 2D spaces. She has a keen interest in portals, and the idea of alternative realities. Through her work, she situates herself in an otherworldly realm: accessible through hot pink, moon-based doors, treetop seats with rainbow backgrounds, and puppy-induced highs.