Joe Bagley




Paper is a simple object with a deep and complex history.  For thousands of years people have been cutting paper, transforming it into folk art as unique and diverse as their cultures.  My work is part of a new “American Papercut” style reflecting various folk styles with a new and modern approach to subject and form.  Each of my pieces is cut by hand from a single sheet of black paper, and mounted to white illustration board using archival adhesive. 


The intricacies of my work reflect my desire to push the physical boundaries of this medium. With each piece, I challenge myself to increase the complexity of my work while also creating a work that is visually engaging.  I enjoy the challenge of portraying depth, texture, and drama with two-tone black and white.


Because this art form is already associated with antiques, folk art, and crafts, I am attempting to bring papercutting to a new modern audience.  My unique stile including dramatic perspective, complex texture, and the overall large scale of my work is a break from the traditions of this art form. 


I am also trying to blur the line between fine art, craft, and folk art in order to show my audience that there is no solid definition of any of the three.  Though my work can be associated with all three, it does not fully meet the traditional qualifications of any categorization. I aim to make the viewer question their prejudices and preconceived notions of paper, fine art, craft, and folk art while enjoying the bold, yet simple nature of my work.

Artist Bio


Joe Bagley attended Boston University where he received a BA in Archaeology. While pursuing his degree, he maintained a long-held hobby of papercutting, an art form he was introduced to at a summer camp art class.  This hobby of over 12 years became a full time pursuit after he lost his archaeological job to the economic crisis in the fall of 2008.  Facing a quickly declining job market, he focused on his art creating a small business dedicated to the creation of fine art and custom first anniversary gifts (traditionally made from paper).


Joe’s original papercuts have been shown in galleries and museums across the country including the Tampa Museum of Art, and the Florida Craftsman.  He will be having his first solo show at Acquire in Boston, MA in the summer of 2010.  His work can be found in private collections in forty five states and fifteen countries including eight pieces in the collection Gavin and Yaena Boyle, London. 


He currently resides in Boston, Massachusetts with his wife, Jennifer. 


Joe Bagley



Born:  Portland, Maine February 3, 1985

Residence:  Dorchester, MA


B.A. Archaeology Boston University 2006

Art Education: Self Taught


Summary of Museum/Gallery Appearances

·   Upcoming: Cutting Our Own Paths: Contemporary Works by Paper Artists. Westmoreland Museum of American Art July 2010- September 2010

·   ACQUIRE, North End, Boston, MA- June 2010-August 2010

·   High Wire Gallery, San Antonio, TX, April 2010

·   “Papercuts” Terminal 22 Gallery, Oakland, CA Feb 2010

·   Old Crow Gallery, South Portland, ME- January-March, 2009

·   Old Crow Gallery, South Portland, ME- Holiday Show December, 2008

·   Tampa Museum of Art, Kick Start My Art, Work shown, July 2008

·   Florida Craftsmen Gallery, St. Petersburg, FL April 2008-July 2008

·   Tampa Artist Emporium, Tampa, FL  January 2008-July 2008


Media Appearances:

·   Valentine’s Day Gift Guide, WJBK,  FOX 2 Detriot, Feb 13, 2010


Print Appearances

·   2009 Holiday Gift Guide, Stuff Magazine, Dec 2009

·   Hanging by a Thread, Firstcut Magazine Winter 2009

·   Work in Progress, Firstcut Magazine Winter 2008

·   Papercutter Profile: Joe Bagley in Firstcut Magazine Spring 2007


Summary of Art Shows

·   Boston Arts Festival, Boston, MA September 2009

·   Art in the Park, South Portland, ME August 2009

·   Starbucks, Marshfield, MA All display areas. November 2008- April 2009

·   Island Fest Art Show, Davis Island, Tampa, FL Feburary 2008

·   Saturday Art Market, St. Petersburg, FL January 2008-March 2008

·   Art in the Park, Historic Kenwood Seminole Park, St. Petersburg, FL October 2007 (AWARD: “Fan Favorite”)

·   Art in the Park, South Portland, ME August 2006


Lectures and Presentations:

·   A Cut Above, The Art and History of Papercutting  March 26, 2009 Cohasset Library, MA

·   A Cut Above, The Art and History of Papercutting April 21, 2009 Hingham Library , MA

·   A Cut Above, The Art and History of Papercutting June 2, 2009 Brockton Library, MAA

·   Boys and Girls Club volunteer paper art project South Portland, ME February 2009



Commercial Work

·   Logo design for Morten P Consult, Denmark 2007

·   Logo design for Koster Aktiv, Sweden 2007



·   Guild of American Papercutters 2006-Present


Market Availability

            Online store at

            Online Gallery: