Ann Landi, Under The Radar, January 17, 2021.
"A strong interest in craftsmanship underlies Carole Kunstadt’s quirky sculptures and two-dimensional works, and though her career has taken a few detours over the years, she has maintained a respect for materials and execution, even as she is tearing apart old books to make magical objects that pay homage to earlier times and trailblazers."
Dorit Jordan Dotan and Judith Joseph, OPEN STUDIOS: Creativity in an Uncertain Time V, January 12, 2021.
In this session, curated by Dorit Jordan Dotan and Judith Joseph, we will be joined by artists Debra Kapnek, Carole Kunstadt and Sarah Lightman as they offer insight into their creative processes and share the impact of the current social order on the psychological and spiritual content of their work.
Linda Marston-Reid, 'In Pursuit of Color' explores many sides of artists' visions, November 13, 2019.
"In this exhibit, the exuberant use of color is the focus until you approach Carole Kunstadt's mark-making drawings that showcase color in a subtle way. The line of the pencil is the star of these drawings and the introduction of small bits of color teases the viewer, who may try to read the markings as a centuries-old text."
Jonathan Kamholtz, Does Size Matter?:"Magnitude Seven: 15th Annual Exhibition of Small Works' at Manifest Gallery, May 31 - June 28, 2019, June 30, 2019.
"The opening wall tag refers to the exhibit as an anthology of “hand-sized works,” but only a few seemed to actually suggest the hand as the appropriate measurement of scale, and to further suggest ways that smaller works invoke the body in different ways than larger works might. In Carole Kunstadt’s “Pressing On: Homage to Hannah More, No. 87” (2018), an antique “sad” iron (a solid piece of metal ready to heated) is mounted with a partial page of text from the Enlightenment playwright and essayist Hannah More’s writings, then covered with lace, scorching them. Kunstadt has fashioned well over a hundred sad irons, with materials on their flat surfaces ranging from string and buttons to fur and tacks, calling to mind the classic surrealist gesture of Man Ray’s “The Gift.” Irons, of course, nearly always raise questions about “women’s work,” and Kunstadt’s is one of the relatively few works to pick up on the potential politicization of the surreal."
Brian K. Mahoney, Metaphysical Containers: The Art of Carole Kunstadt, March 1, 2019.
"And while printed matter is primarily used to convey meaning through words, words are usually obscured in the work of the Hurley-based artist. Kunstadt's work is a kind of post-word world. It's the reimagining of the pages that creates their magic. In Kunstadt's hands, books are broken down and transformed, phoenix-like, into new shapes that encompass the original meaning of the words while transcending them. The repurposed forms reveal a previously undisclosed essence within the books. They also create new stories out of the antique objects, unlocking the physical potential latent in the pages."
Lynn Woods, Carole Kunstadt pays tribute to firebrands Margaret Fuller and Hannah More in her WAAM exhibition, December 6, 2018, Hudson Valley 1, Almanac Weekly.
"Viewed collectively from a distance, the black, upright triangular shapes of the irons have a spectral quality, as if they were the shades of the unknown women – many of them doubtless domestic servants – who once labored over them. In contrast, the collaged flat surfaces, the underside of the iron functioning as the “canvas,” is literally the most visible and readable part of each piece, as if the conceptual were concrete; object and meaning are inverted, time turned inside-out as solid artifact is subjugated to the areas of text and sensuous assertions of the soft, fragile materials. History lies in the shadows as the materials sourced from that history are deconstructed and recomposed in a Modernist format."
John Shorb, Portfolio: Carole P. Kunstadt, November 15, 2017, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 8 - 17, Journal of the Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies.
"Carole P. Kunstadt creates exquisite, tactile works, most often from religious materials such as the Bible and related texts. Kunstadt says her background informs her art practice.... Kunstadt's careful way with materials demonstrates the respect and awe of the life of theses objects and books."
Susan Dunne, Book Art at Hill-Stead, July 11, 2017.
"In the Hill-Stead's library, 3,000 books owned by Riddle have sat in their shelves for about a century. But the center of the library rooms have been turned into a temporary gallery to exhibit works by - appropriately - artists who work with books. It is the first time contemporary art has been shown at the historic museum."
"An exploration of the world within informs the vision of Carole P. Kunstadt......Kunstadt’s series, Sacred Poems, is based on copies of the 1844 and 1849 Parish Psalmodies, books originally used for both communal and private prayer. Interfacing with their repeated cadence, numbering system and laudatory function, Kunstadt invents her own performative ritual. After slicing the religious codices into strips, she weaves, knots and sews them with fine tissue and gold leaf gold into organic forms that chart the passage of time and lend new textural possibility. Akin to medieval illuminations, the series endows mundane acts with the potential of transcendence, and posits an alternate path to the sacred."
Greg Salisbury, Gershman Y Exhibit Explores Brave New Word, February 4, 2015.
"The resulting pieces, which feature pages from the Bible cut, shaped and bound to either look like or give an echo of books themselves, thrum with a contained religiosity. This is achieved both through the construction and through the arrangement of the shapes, most notably in the assemblage that immediately calls to mind the foundation for the Temple Mount. It is hard not to immediately hearken to the binding of Isaac looking at one piece, to the taharah ceremony for burying the dead in white linen in another."
Paola Pulchino, Focus on the Artist's Book, Carole P. Kunstadt and Sharon A. Sharp, Patron Editore, Bologna, Italy, September 4, 2013.
."...the cycles of works of Sacred Poems (produced between 2006 and 2011) and the Old Testament (all dated 2009) - are certainly the finest for construction, conceptual design and communicative power; they approach with cultural vehemence the theme of the sacred and of the word, reverting the invisible to its prime nature of unutterable."
PBS's Off Book Short documentary series, Book Art, "explores some of the different ways physical books can be used as an artist's medium.... In the final part, "Transforming the Sacred" book artist Carole Kunstadt explains why her work – which sometimes involves stitching, weaving, and shredding the paper of books – is her way of honoring the book's form. By sewing the text, she sought to "take away the impulse to read the text for what it was." Because "the book itself was containing an experience," her work reflects the way that the written word can "captivate us and take us to another place."
"In addition to the obsessive quality evident in the creation of these pieces, there are also the fascinations with family, history and place. ... Carole P. Kunstadt’s Sacred Poem XVI, XXVII, and LII, in which pages from an 1844 Parish Psalmody are variously cut, threaded, covered in gold-leaf, and sewn together to create gorgeous new texts..."
Museum of Arts & Design
David Revere McFadden, Slash: Paper Under The Knife, Museum of Arts & Design, 5 Continents Editions, 2009.
“A sense of intimacy and loss pervades the work; fragments of memory and belief are brought together to create a hybrid form that negates the sequential nature of reading, replacing it with suggestive echoes of inner states of praise, worship, and prayer.”
Karen Rosenberg, Move Over, Humble Doily: Paper Does a Star Turn, October 20, 2009.
“In the catalog Mr. McFadden relates contemporary paper cutting to Japanese katagami stencils, Mexican paper picado and the medieval practice of excising illuminations from manuscripts. (This last reference is especially relevant to the creatively altered books in "Slash", which include an encyclopedia, an 1844 parish psalmody and a white-supremacist tome.)”