I am a contemporary artist, who expands upon the time-honored medium of paper to find new forms of expression through complex paper folding. The discovery of Chinese ‚ÄúZhe Zhi‚ÄĚ modular paper folding was a shared cultural experience taught to me by one of my art students. Now, working in this unique paper medium allows me to create my own geometric beauty and give a singular voice to the unity of many.
My abstract sculptural style is based on revealing the dynamic lines of various organic forms including birds and plant life. Natural forms allow me to explore their architecture, as well as their hidden mathematical beauty. I now use multiple folded pieces of paper to do this. Each folded paper unit becomes a point that describes the topology of changing planes. The original modular Chinese paper folding technique I use is called ‚ÄúZhe Zhi.‚ÄĚ This technique has greatly influenced my sculptural forms. Since it is modular in nature and I use it as a fine art sculptural medium, it may contain many more folded pieces of paper than the original Chinese folk art. My artwork may have as many as 6500 pieces of folded color acid-free paper, bonded with acid-free glue. Creating abstract contemporary sculpture from flat paper is a challenge that consistently reveals the architectural power of paper.
After I was introduced to this unique modular Chinese paper technique, further research revealed its ancient origins. Buddhist monks introduced paper as they travelled across Asia, ultimately introducing paper to Japan around 750A.D. The Japanese took paper making to heart and ultimately coined the world wide generic word for paper folding, ‚ÄúOrigami‚ÄĚ. The ancient ‚ÄúZhe Zhi‚ÄĚ Chinese modular paper folding technique was introduced to the west for the very first time in 1993. That is when Chinese immigrant artists were captured off the ship, ‚ÄúThe Golden Venture." The unique paper folk art they created while in an American prison served as my inspiration to explore this medium. The paper sculpture I now create attempts to honor these immigrants‚Äô struggle for freedom. My art reflects the fragility as well as the strength of both paper and the universal struggle for freedom.
‚ÄúWe entrust our dreams to the fragility of paper‚Ä¶‚ÄĚ said a Chinese immigrant.