Did you enjoy crafting with paper as a child? I certainly did! Folding, cutting, gluing, assembling, coloring, and drawing. The possibilities seemed to be endless until I became an adult. As an adult, it became something I took notes on when I received phone calls, or stuck on my computer to remind me of deadlines. It has lost its magic, unless I am watching Toy Story. I have recently found a heavenly place where magic lives on in its full glory, the realm of paper art. Let me share it with all of you paper lovers, young and old.
Shining a Light on Paper
Paper is not only a medium that encompasses art, it is also a material that casts a spell of creativity. One of the most popular forms of paper art is paper cutting. I too love its delicate work and the gentle texture of the material. (Search for “paper” on TRiCERA.NET and look under “materials.”) However, realizing the possibilities that these two artists bring out was very refreshing to my adult eyes, like taking a dip in a glacial lake on a hot summer day. Tetsuji Yamashita – his incomparable technique is called “paper quilting”; Lacy Barry – her lively figures are called “paper sculptures”; and I’m sure you’ve heard of her.
Dig deep into what you see and listen to what it tells you.
Tetsuji Yamashita is an internationally acclaimed Japanese artist who draws inspiration from Africa, where he found his calling. At first glance, I almost thought it was a painting if the texture didn’t jump out at me. From the tribal colors and motifs of Africa, I thought it would be some kind of intricately woven fabric, but it was not. I was mistaken. It’s all little pieces of paper cut out, layered into larger pieces of paper, very intricate and detailed, very meticulously! His behind-the-scenes video is a perfect showcase of just how precise his handiwork is.
What makes his work even more unique is that his original poetry accompanies the visual pieces. The everlasting narrative message completes his work, as if to symbolize the impermanence of humanity. He says, “Paper is alive. This minute piece of paper is like a musical note, and the work is the score. Indeed, I feel I can hear the harmonious sound of his magnificent paper orchestra and lyrical poetry. Dig into what you see and listen to what it tells you.
Unbounded vibrancy and urban sophistication
Growing up in the Canadian wilderness, Lacey Barry “experienced the wonders of nature and culture, from the colorful Northern Lights to the colorful ceremonial dresses of the local First Nations tribes.” Her wonderful three-dimensional paper art crystallizes the beauty she witnessed. Unlike the works of Tetsuji Yamashita, it is immediately apparent that paper is the material of choice. However, I could not believe my eyes when I saw that it was paper. It could be in the shape of a feather, a flower, or a building. When I was a kid, I used to make composite origami and milk carton robots, but this was on a whole new level. There are no limits to her mastery of engineering with paper and cardboard.
Also of note are the works that skillfully combine unbounded dynamism with urban sophistication. For example, the bold use of color and gradation in “Unicorn Wings, Plate No. 1” brings the energy of Mother Nature to life. It is so realistic that you can imagine the various shades of aurora she must have seen. Her series of floral wall hangings stand out for their tribal and geometric patterns that surround the graceful flowers. Although the wearable art she creates has indigenous motifs, her interpretation is contemporary. Perhaps this artistic instinct is an asset that qualifies her to be called a “multifaceted artist. Her artwork may seem adventurous, but the polished pieces will adorn your everyday life.
Paper is more than just a medium for art. With artists like them, we art lovers can’t take our eyes off the realm of paper art. as one, I will be listing you to upcoming artists. For more fun discoveries like this one, don’t forget to subscribe to our ArtClip newsletter!