Thursday, December 18, 2008

Origami - The Japanese Art Of Paper

A way to pass time for some, for others just a simple game, Origami is in fact, alongside the tea ceremony and ikebana, one of the most important aspects of the Japanese ancient traditions. It is a truly unique art, a melange between simpleness and armony, in true Japanese manner.
This ancient art of paper folding originated somewhere in China, almost 2000 years ago and it was adopted by japanese aristocracy a few hundred years later. Used in the past for decorating ancient Buddhist temples, origami products have became nowdays a part of the day to day japanese life, being used in various occasions, such as decorating the modern japanese houses or as gifts for weddings. To give you a clue about the impact oregami art has on japanese society, I could tell you that these people are considering building an origami plane to be launched from space. Recently a prototype passed a durability test in a wind tunnel on March 2008, and Japan's space agency adopted it for feasibility studies.
Origami doesn't just cover still-lifes, it also covers moving objects; Origami can move in clever ways. Action origami includes origami that flies, requires inflation to complete, or, when complete, uses the kinetik energy of a person's hands, applied at a certain region on the model, to move another flap or limb. Some argue that strictly speaking, only the latter is really "recognized" as action origami. Action origami, first appearing with the traditional Japanese flapping bird, is quite common. One example is Robert Lang's instrumentalists; when the figures' heads are pulled away from their bodies, their hands will move, resembling the playing of music.

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