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Monday, 21 October 2013 01:03

Me in an Origami Exhibition!

by  Gerardo
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I recently participated for the first time in an origami exhibition. It was also my first origami event: the 1st International Meeting of Origami Facatativá. Can you believe that the registration was free?! Anyhow, the truth was that I was really excited... I even arrived the night before, so I could be the first one the morning after in the exhibition room in order to choose the best table... Sorry, I really was excited! I also was extremely happy with the workshops I taught and the ones I attended, and even more with the people I shared with, but this article is just about my participation in the exhibition : )

I showed only seven models, of a good size, three of which I already had before knowing about the event. You can see all seven of them in the gallery of this article. Hope you like it all ; )

From my experience in this first exhibition I learned a couple of things I 'd like to share with you. They're basically just two lessons: (1) you can take several ideas from museums and galleries when you want to display
your models the best way possible and (2) you can take advantage of origami itself in order to develop these ideas. These are some of those ideas taken from museums and galleries...

Artwork labels: Next to the models, this is the MOST important thing in an origami exhibition. From my point of view, these labels suggest that you're facing an intellectual work rather than a "figurine "; know what I mean? There's always plenty to say about a piece of art that it
can't communicate by itself: Who created it and who folded it? What's its name? When was it created and when was it folded ? Through what technique? What materials were used? But also, I personally feel that there is always a story behind every creation and every model folded. If you print a large enough label, you can also share its story. The label can be a simple printed portion of a sheet of paper or it can be an origami model which purpose is to present the information in a striking way. That was the intention behind my latest creation: the Sandwich-board-style sign. In the future, I will officially present the model in Neorigami and I will hopefully also include photo-diagrams, but I don't know in what month I will do this.

Label of the artist: This is also quite common in museum and gallery exhibitions, that at the start of the exhibition a larger label tells a little about the owner of the mind and hands responsible for the pieces on display. In my case, I used this space to tell what I thought was important about myself and also to share a list of my own models : )

Frames: Some pieces are flat enough to look good against a wall. They don't have to be completely flat in order to do so, just as long as they don't have too much volume. It's worthwhile to present this type of models in some frames. The frame can simply
be an origami box with short walls. In fact, that's what I want to do next time; fold some traditional masu boxes in black poster board, with walls of 1/6 instead of 1/4 of height, for taping to the wall and place in them models like my Two pocket envelope and my Accordion card holder among others. KDianne Stephens created an excellent origami frame with that intention, perhaps you could create your own version.

Display stands: Small sculptures are usually placed on display stands in order to draw more attention to the sculpture, I'm referring to small pedestals that are placed on a table. The stand can once again be a simple origami poster board box, but this time placed upside down. I used a very simple design that doesn't need too much paper, but unfortunately the bottom edges tended to curve and the surface tended to buckle under the weight of the model on display. This can be solved through different options, one being using a box model that needs more paper like a traditional masu box or a completely closed cube. Another option is to glue small balsa boards on the back of each lower edge of the stand and another board below (and along) its surface. Now, if you don't want to raise the model or you don't want to fold a box, a simple piece of paper under the model is enough for it to catch more attention. In fact , you could save material and space if you simply print the label on a corner of a sheet of paper and place the model on top of the rest of the sheet. And as for the models that can't stay standing on their own, Vincent Achard created a display stand with a lifted tip that serves as support for the model. It's called the Pointed square and its diagrams will be part of the book of useful models we made with other people which we'll start selling soon ; )

Display cases: When I see something protected by a display case I get the feeling that it's something valuable that really needs to be protected. Bear in mind that I haven't tried the following idea and perhaps it will curve like poster board. In any case, I think you could also make a simple and inexpensive display case by using transparency paper. I would suggest not to fold it through origami, because the layers of the transparency paper would ruin the visibility of the model inside. Instead, it would be a good idea to cut the Red Cross symbol out of the transparency paper and simply fold down the four flaps, then you would just need to tape together the walls using scotch tape along all four vertical edges. That way you get a transparent case that protects and shows perfectly one of your models. If the sides do curve, you could glue a thin stick along each bottom edge of the case.

Folding screens: To create a division between your work and that of another artist, or to create a background for your own sculptures, you could place a rectangle of poster board with a couple of vertical folds. It's an idea I haven't tried out either. I don't think it would be too troublesome if it isn't very high, but if it is, it would be advisable to add thin balsa boards to make it firm.

Well, these were all my ideas. What I think is that if we are very proud of what we've folded, it isn't enough to just "put it in sight ." It is worth the effort to make your work stand out before the public. A good way to achieve this is through artwork labels, frames, display stands and cases, besides folding screens. Now, I can't conclude this without thanking Naty
Nefesh, Alexander Rodríguez and Sergio León Sánchez Gómez for allowing me to post some of their photos. I was tremendously flattered when I saw my models in their virtual albums.

One question, how do you exhibit or would like to exhibit your models?


  • Comment Link Magic Fingaz Thursday, 05 December 2013 21:28 posted by Magic Fingaz


  • Comment Link Gerardo Friday, 06 December 2013 01:36 posted by Gerardo

    Thank you Magic Fingaz

    : )

  • Comment Link Origami University Friday, 13 December 2013 02:37 posted by Origami University

    Sounds like fun. I hope one day I can go to a big origami event myself but I've never heard of any near where I live...

  • Comment Link Gerardo Friday, 13 December 2013 16:39 posted by Gerardo

    I hope you do too Origami University; I had a lot of fun. How about trying to find some other origamists near by and try to organize the event between all of you guys? It doesn't have to be a super mega event, you know?

    When I got tired of waiting for a challenge about useful models I organized my own and it went great =D

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