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Beautiful Film Noir “Paintings” Made with Packaging Tape

Something as mundane as packing tape, in the right hands, can be transformed into beautiful art. In this case, the ‘right hands’ belong to Ukrainian-born artist Mark Khaisman, who now lives in Philadelphia.

Mark uses nothing but packing tape and light to create his incredible artworks. He is a ‘painter of light’, as he puts it. Indeed, it is the play of light that brings out the true beauty of his ‘paintings’.

His process is simple – he sets Plexiglass sheets on a backlit panel that’s sort of like an architect’s box-light. This is the ‘canvas’ on which he uses the tape to construct images. He places strip after strip of packing tape on the glass, building up the image in layers. As he adds on the layers, less light shines through the glass, creating depth, shadow and definition in the pictures.

Mark-Khaisman

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The Brown Tape Paintings of Mark Khaisman

By applying layer upon layer of brown packaging tape on plexiglass light boxes, Mark Khaisam creates amazing paintings.

Philadelphia-based Mark Khaisam used to work on stained-glass windows, before discovering the packaging tape, and though the two art forms seem unrelated, the artist says they are just different ways of painting with light. As he uses up to ten layers of tape for the darkest spots on his paintings, Mr. Khaisam needs around three 100-meter packaging tape rolls per week, to complete his artworks.

The artist doesn’t sketch out the images first, as you might imagine, he simply works with stills from his favorite films, increases them to actual size, then starts adding pieces of packaging tape directly on the light boxes. Using different number of layers to create darker areas and shadows, and thinner pieces of tape to achieve brush strokes, Mark Khaisman manages to create detailed paintings that look amazingly loose.

The packaging tape paintings of Mark Khaisman sell for as much as $10,000.

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