I often get asked about how archival my work is. I have worked with
newspaper for close to 40 years and it isn't the newspaper that I question. My work from
the beginning is still intact. There is a reason newspaper clogs our landfills.
What decays newspaper is light and air, which isn't an issue when
newspaper is stacked.
The bigger issue for me is the binder. I have used everything from fiberglass
resin to boat building epoxies. All these are great and create different surfaces but they have
to be ventilated and can be nasty to work with.
My personal favorite
is either punching holes in the paper and securing it with all-thread
glueing with Elmer's glue. Elmers is non-toxic,
I don't have to wear a mask or have all the windows open with fans blowing when I am working with it.
I have heard that the more rigid a glue is the less archival it is.
I tend to agree.
I took down a piece in my studio that had been nailed to the wall over 25 years ago. This piece was completely covered with dust.
It was so intact (of course, the newspaper had changed color) The paper and glue felt like it
had been made yesterday. On this particular piece I had layered a piece of window screen into an Elmers and newspaper dust mixture on the back. It is still
supple and strong.