japanese artist Naoki Onogawa has been fascinated by the traditional art of origami since childhood. Now he incorporates folk craftsmanship into his own work of art. Using nothing more than her hands, the artist folds hundreds of tiny origami cranes small enough to fit on her fingertips. These tiny paper creatures are then used as leaves on the delicate branches of his asymmetrical tree-shaped sculptures.
Onogawa began creating paper cranes after witnessing the devastating effects of the Great earthquake in eastern Japan in 2011. Amid all the destruction, he saw a pile of paper cranes placed near the wreckage of a local school and was struck by the sacred and solemn beauty of their presence. From that point on he was driven to incorporate them into his art and channel their deeper meaning through his own creative process.
“Making a place for origami cranes is part of my creation,” Onogawa told My Modern Met. “I understand the past history of origami cranes in my own way and bring it to the present day by creating works of art. I believe that everyone who is familiar with cranes has their own story with them. What each person feels for themselves and keeps these cranes in their minds is unique, but I hope that my works will allow a new dialogue. Through this dialogue, I hope that there is something – whatever it is – that stirs the hearts of the viewer. “
Several pieces by Naoki Onogawa are currently on display until May 5 at the Setouchi City Art Museum. To see more of his incredible work, follow the artist on Instagram or visit his gallery website to order a part of your choice.
Japanese artist Naoki Onogawa makes hundreds of tiny origami cranes using nothing more than his hands.
He then uses them as leaves perched on the delicate branches of his tree sculptures.
By his creation, he made a space for these cranes to exist.
Each individual crane he folds is small enough to fit on his fingertip.