When I asked Los Angeles based artist Chyrum Lambert why he chooses to use quite an involved combination of media -- different inks, paints, wax, graphite, and dyes -- he replied, "I've never been told not to!" A sound response if ever there was one, and in my opinion, a great place to start when discussing his multimedia paper compositions. He explained that the decision for using such varied materials is relatively unconscious, constituting the concept of "try it, see if it works." And in Lambert's case, I'd argue the uninhibited attitude toward experimenting with media in which he tests the boundaries of painting, assemblage and even illustration (the poster-like series I Was Planning On Calling Home) is the secret ingredient to producing these dynamic, vibrant images.
Although he uses a variety of media in his work and employs different methods of painting, washing, cutting and assembling, Lambert assigns those things secondary importance: the real value of the image is in the image itself.
While a well defined work ethic and learned craft hold importance in the employment of the creative act, the honest value of an image is not of its substance; the honest value of an image lies in the viewing of its image.
With that in mind, it's still impossible to ignore the quality of the media and the craftsmanship of these images. Of course, we aren't meant to totally put those things aside; they fundamentally inform our interpretation of pictures. Lambert's pieces explore the ways that various mediums work together by using a two-part process of first applying the ink, paint, dye and wax to the paper and then cutting it up in order to arrange components into the final composition. The assembled compositions aren't a limited, linear process, either: the artist has a stock pile of previously painted material, some several years old, that he can cull from. Not only is he in the constant process of creating, but he also takes pieces from his past, rediscovering textures, colors and compositions from works started several years ago. I love this organic cycle of creation, and eventual rediscovery, of his own art.