Blog Categories
  • Visit our Indiegogo campaign!

  • Support the IAF!

    The Interstitial Arts Foundation needs your support. Click here to donate and become a Friend of the IAF!

  • @InterstitialArt

  • About the IAF

    The Interstitial Arts Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the study, support, and promotion of interstitial art: literature, music, visual and performance art found in between categories and genres – art that crosses borders. Find out more!

  • Latest IAF News


    Thanks to 277 generous backers for our Interfictions Indiegogo Campaign, we raised $10,318 by the time our campaign ended at midnight, July 14th, 2014.  When we launched on June 3rd, we were staggered to find donations doubling almost daily, until after about 3 weeks we had reached our original target goal of $8,500, and were able to move on to our Stretch Goal of $10,000.

    Which means we not only get to publish Interfictions Online for another year, but we can pay our contributors at higher rates now, rates more in line with the effort and talent that innovation requires. Thank you, each and every one of the 277 generous donors who stepped forward to say that interstitial art is valued and valuable. The number of people is as important as the number of dollars raised. We are awed by your generosity.
    Now [...]

    INTERFICTIONS issue #3 is up online!

    The editors of Interfictions Online are happy to announce the birth of the journal’s latest issue, on May 22, 2014!

    The Spring 2014 issue’s non-fiction offerings include Mark Craddock’s poignant collage in Aerial Acrobatics and Gender Reassignment Surgery – A How-To Guide, while Inda Lauryn’s Parallels and Transitions splices analysis of contemporary female vocalists into a graduate school memoir. Isabel Yap’s Life Is Not a Shoujo Manga speaks for itself. And in an interview with Jeff VanderMeer and Jeremy Zerfoss, the two creators discuss their illustrated guide to writing, Wonderbook.

    The fiction offerings remix tropes from ghosts to automata, with new work by Richard Butner, Su-Yee Lin, Kat Howard, Tade Thompson and S. Craig Renfroe Jr.

    Several of the poems in this issue reimagine older narratives: Sridala Swami’s AI Winter draws on the Mahabharata, Sonya Taaffe’s Double Business on Hamlet, and Mary Alexandra Agner’s Hypothesis Between Your Ribs on the brief life of Charles Darwin’s daughter.


  • Featured IAF News

  • Events

    Interstitial Indy

    Sunday, Nov. 25

    Interstitial Indy

    Indiana Writers’ Center
    812 E 67th Street
    Indianapolis, IN
    (off College Ave. just behind The Indianapolis Art Center in the Cultural Complex Building)

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Meta

  • “Eliminate the boundaries”: An interview with artist Colette Fu
    by Erin | March 2nd, 2011 |

    (Eds. Note: Colette Fu’s art isn’t like much of anything you’ve seen before. Her enormous fold out pop-up books work as photo essays, as collages, as sculptures. They’re so elaborate that the photography and multimedia staff at The New York Times was inspired to create interactive videos of three of her pieces that allow the viewer to rotate them in three dimensions [click to see.] In a fascinating instance of a niche creating itself, she gained a job as a “paper engineering consultant and fabricator” for an animation studio, and an advertisement for a non-profit hospital she helped create won an Annie Award last month from the International Animated Film Society. Our interview with Colette begins below the video.)

    About herself, Colette writes: For the past seven years I have been making one-of-a-kind artist’s books that combine my photography with paper engineering. Pop-up and flap books originally illustrated ideas about astronomy, fortune telling, navigation, anatomy of the body and other scientific principles. This history prompted me to construct my own books reflecting ideas on how our selves relate to society today. Initially, the challenge of creating pop-up books, having to construct something that physically would fold down into a confined space, helped limit what I could create. Experience and experimentation have forced me to think otherwise; as I problem solve, the paper takes over and leads beyond what I thought was physically possible. My pop-ups are a way for me to speak and inform; the real and implied motion in the pop-ups link to a temporal element, and an inevitable corollary is to awe and unsettle. With pop-up books I want to eliminate the boundaries between book, installation, photography, craft and sculpture.

    What drew you to approach pop-up books as fine art?
    I studied photography in graduate school. Most of my time there was spent on the computer, scanning and photoshopping. After graduating I wanted to do something more hands on and happened upon the pop-up book section at Barnes and Noble. I was intrigued by the complexity and the way that flat images were literally made 3D, yet were still compact. I liked how the viewer feels more engaged in the process.

    How did you become involved in animation?
    Carolyn, a producer at Duck Studios in Los Angeles did a search on pop-up book artists and found a video I posted on YouTube a few years ago. After speaking on the phone a little, they flew me up to LA to consult for a week for 3 pop-up-book-style commercials they were making for the Children’s Medical Center in Texas. We all got along and I stayed for another month and a half.

    Has being interstitial (i.e. creating art that falls outside recognized genre and marketing categories) created difficulties for you? If so, how?
    Making interstitial art is hard to make a living by. You have to be more creative on how you are going to financially gain with it. It’s not easy to explain what I do to other people, even artists. I would not be happy creating art that wasn’t so unique and I’ve been lucky that I have found people who can appreciate it.

    What strategies have you used to get around this? What advice would you give to another interstitial artist in a similar position?
    I think with art-making, if you create what you want for yourself, the external rewards will come later. Another artist recently mentioned that he makes what he wants and the money has always come later. He was very resourceful. I am constantly searching for grant and fellowship opportunities; I spend more time researching than making art. I always have several projects going on at the same time. Some bore me but make money, some have more structure which I need once in a while, and some make me excited to be an artist. I freelance for all kinds of institutions and organizations to find what works best.

    If you could change one thing about your situation as an artist, what would it be?

    Not obsess so much.


    Colette Fu received her MFA in Fine Art Photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2003. In 2008 she received a Fulbright Fellowship to photograph the 25 ethnic minorities of her mother’s hometown of Yunnan Province, China. She has created most of her work at artist residencies such as the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, Instituto Sacatar, Bemis Center, Visual Studies Workshop, the Millay Colony, and the Alden B. Dow Center for Creativity. Colette has received awards from Fulbright, the Independence Foundation, Sovereign Foundation, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Virginia Commission for the Arts, Constance Saltonstall Foundation, En Foco, Photographer’s Forum, Nikon, the Puffin Foundation and the Society for Photographic Education. She works as a paper engineering consultant for stop animation commercials, freelances and teaches pop-up courses and community workshops at various art centers and institutions.

    finish line

    One Response to ““Eliminate the boundaries”: An interview with artist Colette Fu”

    1. Alex Dally MacFarlane Says:

      How gorgeous! The pop-up Dai street vendor is definitely my favourite. I’m afraid I don’t have any deep thoughts at this point, only awed appreciation.

    Post a Comment