Produced between 2006 and 2009, Australian designer and illustrator Dan McPharlin's Analogue Miniatures are a marvel of papercraft. The tiny analogue synthesizers and pieces of recording equipment were pieced together with paper, framing mat board, string, rubber bands and cardboard, and appeared in everything from art shows to editorial spreads in magazines like Esquire. McPharlin is widely known for his retro sci-fi illustration work that appears on album covers and in limited edition prints, and he brings this aspect of fiction to these paper models as well. None of the objects are meant as exact replicas or recreations of real-life devices, but are instead speculative objects that draw aesthetic attributes from the audio technology of the 70s and 80s.
Estudio Guardabosques (previously) is a Buenos Aires-based design and illustration studio consisting of Carolina Silvero and Juan Nicolás Elizalde. The duo create a wide range of paper objects for editorial, artistic, and personal experimentation, each infused with geometric flair and a cheeky sense of humor. Seen here are a number of projects from the last year or so including an installation titled Gatos Furiosos featuring a group of ambivalent felines as they destroy an entire city that was built for the Furious Drawing Festival.
Paper engineer Aliaksei Zholner has wowed us before with his miniature V8 engine, and now brings his crafty talents to the musical realm with this working paper organ. The tiny organ has 18 functional keys that create tones with the aid of corresponding reeds, and of course a pipe organ can’t function without a steady air flow, a problem Zholner solves with a large balloon. (via Sploid)
Japanese artist Ayumi Shibata uses traditional methods of Japanese paper cutting to create miniature cities within vessels of glass. Her chosen materials reference the delicate relationship humans have with our environment and natural forces of our world, while also relating to the Japanese translation of “paper.” In Japanese, the word for “paper” is “Kami,” which can also mean “god,” “divinity,” or “spirit.” Kami are omnipresent in the Shinto religion, and reside in the sky, ground, trees, and rocks.
“Kami move freely beyond time, universe and places, appearing during events, as well as in our houses and our bodies,” said Shibata on her website. “These spirits also dwell in paper. In the religion of Shinto, white paper is considered a sacred material.”
Using this charged material, Shibata attempts to construct a sculptural dialogue about how we relate and respond to our natural world. Some of Shibata’s work is included in the three-person exhibition Passion Paper at Galerie Atalier Du Genie in Paris through March 27, 2017. (thnx Laura!)
Papercraft duo Zim & Zou (previously) are back at it with one of their most grandiose installations yet for Hermès in Dubai. Each piece is a miniature paper village populated with tiny characters, one centered around towers of fungi, the other based around blooming lotus flowers. Lucie Thomas and Thibault Zimmermann, the names behind Zim & Zou, specialize in designing and building installations out of tangible materials for advertising, product display, and as part of personal artistic pursuits. You can follow more of their recent work on Instagram and Behance.
Paper artist Matthew Shlian (previously here and here) combines his talent for sculpture with a knack for engineering, producing geometric works that are composed of tight-knit tessellations. Shlian’s receptively folded works have lead to collaborations with scientists at the University of Michigan, together working to visualize research by translating paper structures to micro folds.
“Researchers see paper engineering as a metaphor for scientific principals; I see their inquiry as a basis for artistic inspiration,” said Shlian in an artist statement on his website. “In my studio I am a collaborator, explorer and inventor. I begin with a system of folding and at a particular moment the material takes over.”