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Li Hongbo’s Flexible Paper Sculptures Will Blow Your Mind

Chinese artist Li Hongbo’s sculptures look no different from the classic white Roman-style plaster busts that many sculptors create. But the real magic begins only when you get close and touch them. What appeared to be plaster, reveals itself to be multiple layers of very thin paper.

Li’s technique is stunning – He sketches his ideas before pasting glue in narrow strips across pieces of paper, and stacking them up to the desired height. He uses up to 8,000 layers for a single head. He then cuts, chisels and sands the block of paper using a band saw and angle grinder, just as though he were working with stone. So you could literally touch and play with the busts that Li creates. You could stretch the faces and distort features to reveal an accordion of paper layers, and then snap everything back together with ease.

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The Awe-Inspiring Paper Sculptures of Allen and Patty Eckman

Allen and Patty Eckman create detailed cast paper sculptures inspired by Native American culture, using a special technique they themselves invented.

Allen Eckman took an interest in art and design after returning from Vietnam, where he served as a Sargent. He attended the Art Center College of Design, where he met Patty, who obviously shared his passion for the arts. They married, had kids and managed an advertising company in the Los Angeles area for about 12 years, after which they decided they had had enough of their stressful careers and agreed it was time for a fresh start in something they were truly passionate about, art.

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The Mind-Blowing Origami Sculptures of Eric Joisel

Eric Joisel was one of the most gifted origami artists the world has ever seen, and even though he recently passed away, he lives on through his amazing folded paper masterpieces.

Eric Joisel dedicated most of his life to art, in many of its forms, including drawing and sculpting. He took up origami in 1983, and just four years later had his first exhibition, in Paris. It was proof of his immense talent, but the French artist knew that it took a lot more hard work to take his art to the highest possible level. Whenever someone asked him how long it took him to finish one of his paper artworks, he would say “35 years, because that is how long it has taken me to get to this level.”

Unlike the paper boats or birds people usually associate with the art of origami, Joisel’s works are more like paper sculptures created from a single sheet of paper. The blueprint for a single figure could take several years to complete, and the folding process lasted hundreds of hours, but the result was truly magnificent. By dampening the sheet of paper, the artist could curve it into intricate shapes, allowing him to create details like furrowed brows or veined hands. Some of his larger creations, like the paper rhino you’re about to see below, were created from giant sheets of paper, measuring 15 feet by 25 feet (about the size of a studio apartment).

Although his works sold for thousands of dollars, Eric Joisel lived in a modern farmhouse, and spent several hours a day working on his origami sculptures. He died on October 10, 2010, from lung cancer. He was just 53 years old, and had so much more to give to the art world…

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The Paper World of Jeff Nishinaka

Los Angeles based Jeff Nishinaka is one of the world’s best paper manipulating artists. He creates amazing 3D paper sculptures, by handling paper in the least invasive way.

Although you could swear Jeff Nishinaka has been creating paper sculptures since the day he was born, he didn’t discover his passion for this art form until he attended the Art Center College. He was determined to become a painter, when he was given assignments in both graphic design and fashion drawing to experiment with different art mediums. He had what he likes to cal an “ah-ha!” moment when he discovered paper, and has remained faithful ever since.

He began working with different types of paper, learning how to shape, bend and twist them onto various shapes that ultimately became amazing artworks. Because he treats paper like a living, breathing thing, Jeff Nishinaka manipulates paper in the least invasive way, trying to maintain its integrity. This makes his works special, and easy on the eyes.

Jackie Chan, a close friend of Jeff Nishinaka, owns the biggest collection of the artist’s paper masterpieces.

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