Benja Harney is a self-taught paper engineer based in Sydney, and he creates beautiful and complex works of art from a very delicate medium. Harney has been engineering high-quality pop-up books and paper constructions for the past six years, and his work is now on display in the Queen Victoria Building. Large, vibrant sculptures of lush foliage, blossoms, butterflies, dragon flies, and bees are suspended from the central dome of the building. This is Harney’s largest and most ambitious installation, and it is on display until the end of September.
Elly Mackay is one of my favorite artists. She lives and works in Owen Sound in Ontario, Canada. She creates breathtakingly beautiful, fanciful, storybook-like Yupo paper works on a small scale. Then, in a small stage setting, or ‘theater’, she photographs the drawings to create the finished product. The end result is akin to a picture out of the most beautiful, timeless storybook imaginable. She is currently working on children’s books.
UK-based designer Jonathan Shackleton designed a campaign for Fedrigoni, an Italian paper company, by making templates for potential clients to create their own paper tuxedos. Shackleton’s book contains different paper samples so clients can mix and match colors and patters to see what paper best “suits” their needs. Shackleton’s design offers a creative, fun, and hands-on experience for Fedrigoni’s advertising campaign.
I stumbled upon these intricate, gorgeous, delicate paper sculptures by accident. They are part of a collection called Tokyo From Memory and were created by Australian artist Miso (aka Ukrainian-born Stanislava Pinchuk). They are currently on show the Hugo Michell Gallery in Melbourne.
Some people paint, others do origami. What Simon Schubert does, might best be called ‘something right between the two’. The German artist folds and unfolds paper until a ‘ghost image’ appears. His recent work includes a collection of more than 100 pictures resembling different views on the interior of a villa. I have no clue how someone can think of an idea like that, but it is surely marvelous.
I recently came across Helen Musselwhite’s beautiful paper sculptures. Inspired by nature, her stunningly intricate layered designs draw you into a fairytale world of forests, flowers and hedgerows. Her framed pieces make beautiful wall art, but it’s her haunting sculptures in glass domes that really stick in my mind.
Wow, we thought we’ve seen everything that can be done with tree sheets until we saw these installations. New York artist, Mia Pearlman, who describes her process as ‘very intuitive, based on spontaneous decisions in the moment’, sculpted these tempestuous forces of nature from paper.
Lisa Nilsson is an artist from Massachusetts who seems to have an obsession with anatomy charts. At least, that’s what it looks like judging from her recent tissue series. The artwork is made of Japanese mulberry paper and the gilded edges of old books. They are constructed by a technique of rolling and shaping narrow strips of paper, called quilling or paper filigree. Quilling was first practiced by Renaissance nuns and monks and later overtaken by 18th century ladies to spend their time creatively. Lisa Nilsson says: ‘I find quilling exquisitely satisfying for rendering the densely squished and lovely internal landscape of the human body in cross section.’
Jen Stark is an American artist whose work spans many medians. She has some fantastic 3D work as well as being involved in drawing and animation. Her use of colour and contrast is creative and mesmerising. You can easily become lost in her work. She uses space well so wherever you look there is always […]
In Scotland, magical paper sculptures are being mysteriously left in libraries. These book objects are seemingly the work of one artist and we would all like to know who this talented and generous individual is. It is a mystery, albeit a very artistic one.
Every time I see Benja Harney working on something I am amazed, not just at the intricate detail of everything, but the deadlines he works to and the clients he is working for. He is a paper engineer, making sculptures, illustrations, pop up books and objects out of paper. I recently went to an exhibition […]
Helen Friel is a Paper Engineer and Illustrator, working in the lovely Papered Parlour, London. She graduated from Central Saint Martin’s in 2009 with a First in BA Graphic Design.
If there was a pageant for paper sculptors, Jeff Nishinaka, a native of Los Angeles, would win top prize. His work is breathtaking in its cleanliness, complexity, and kinetic movement.