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One-fold Swan | by origami_madness
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One-fold Swan

I've been meaning to upload this for awhile; here it is. This is an exercise to show that one-fold origami can, indeed, be representational, and even make an artistic statement. I feel that Paul Jackson didn't really take this idea as far as he could've, although maybe I shouldn't say that because all I've seen are the ones on his website.

 

It bugs me when people don't think as highly of minimalism as a form of expression; admittedly I'm a little obsessed with the idea, but origamists especially should know better. Origami is, essentially, an art of abstraction; we must choose which details to include, and which to leave out. Paper cannot render the world around us in perfect realism, and we should not necessarily expect it to. Not to be trite, but sometimes less really is more.

 

That is not to say that anybody that folds something minimal has automatically created an artistic statement; quite on the contrary, often they do not do this very well. If the statement is effective enough, though, it can be more powerful than a more complex one.

 

Think about it: in art class, we are told to put less detail into the background than the subject, and to keep any distracting elements out of the composition, unless they have a purpose. This is because the subject carries any meaning or connotation the artist wishes to invoke. This is equally valid in art; we take out excessive detail to let the character of the piece come through.

 

Another thing that I have heard thrown around a lot is that a minimalist or easy piece is folded by a person who is lazy or not technically advanced enough to do any better. But I would disagree; instead these models require more from a designer and/or folder, because the subtle nuances of the character are that much harder to bring out when you're working with such a limited set of tools, which is in a sense just a projection off of the rules we already impose upon ourselves, those being no cuts, folding from a square, no glue, etc.

 

Wet-folded from a two-inch sheet of bond paper.

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Taken on October 22, 2007