TUMBLING BLOCK original paper collage

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Size & Details

Size & Details

Original paper collage featuring a tumbling block pattern inspired by a vintage quilt in tones of tans, blues, beige, cream and teal. All hand-cut paper finished with wood frame and Musuem Plexi.

  • Medium: vintage papers on wood
  • Size: 33.5" H x 33.5" W (framed)
  • Frame: weathered brown wood frame with Museum Plexi
  • Hardware: ready to hang with wire on back


A timeless optical illusion, woven with the stories of the past emerging in their renewed state. - Dolan Geiman

The tumbling block pattern is a popular design that can be seen throughout history. It emerged in early Greek and Roman mosaics (likely before), Renaissance architecture, and in Baroque, Victorian, and modern art. It was introduced as an American quilting pattern in the 1850’s, and that storied tradition provides personal inspiration.

Quilting began as a salvaging activity, utilizing and repurposing precious materials to extend and renew in a decorative manner. This convergence of practicality, ornament, and storytelling is foundational to Dolan's work and philosophy as well.

The transition from the precise geometries of the mosaics to the craft of quilting changed the context and allowed for stories and messages to be embedded in its layers with the prized imperfections of the hand of the maker. The resulting work is a timeless optical illusion, woven with the stories of the past emerging in their renewed state.

These pieces - Tumbling Block and Mama Made - are just some of Dolan's works featuring this style of pattern making. Dolan loves drawing on techniques of the past, reinterpreting in paper and bringing them to life in these tactile works.

Story of Tumbling Block, Dolan Geiman 2022



Each Dolan Geiman collage is crafted from hand-cut vintage papers sourced over decades of exploration and careful categorizing, held dearly until the perfect piece arrives to claim their colors and texture.

Learn more about the making of paper collages here.

Limited Series

Limited Series

Each work in Dolan Geiman’s portfolio is unique and hand-crafted. Works indicated with “limited series” are reiterations of a recurring theme or concept.

A Certificate of Authenticity is available upon request.

  • Each piece in a limited series is created with an inimitable collection of found materials: no two are exactly alike, although they may look similar at a glance.
  • Details, colors, specific materials, typography and frame will differ from work to work.

Learn More

Dolan Geiman Paper Collages

Dolan's signature paper collage artwork celebrates America's West and Southwest. Color, composition, and detail come to life in hand-cut vintage materials, many salvaged in Dolan's cross-country travels.

Creating the original collage starts with a wood panel. Dolan pulls vintage sheet music from his vast collection and applies these to the wood, first with glue, then with a top layer of whitewash paint. In many prints, this background layer of sheet music peeks through.

Next, Dolan draws the outline for the original collage in graphite atop the sheet music.

Dolan returns to his extensive trove of collected papers – think magazines, antique textbooks, handwritten letters salvaged from abandoned farmsteads - and begins pulling the ideal colors for the piece. He cuts each piece of material by hand and carefully layers into the artwork. These collages are carefully crafted from thousands of small papers: no two are exactly alike.

Dolan's paper collages are finished in a handmade frame constructed from salvaged metal or a modern, minimal wood or metal frame.