Japanese Artist Turns Old Newspapers into Epic Works of Art
One Japanese artist has stepped up her recycling game by literally giving newspaper waste “life.”
Through a process that takes cutting, rolling, twisting and perhaps anything you can do with a bunch of old newspapers, Chie Hitotsuyama makes realistic animal sculptures like you’ve never seen anywhere else.
Born in Shizuoka, Japan, Chie graduated from the Department of Design at Tokyo Polytechnic University. Along with creative director Tomiji Tamai, she formed the Hitotsuyama Studio, located at Shizouka’s Fuji city.
The studio was built from an old warehouse of a paper strip manufacturing plant once operated by Chie’s own family.
Now, the studio is home to Chie’s real-life-looking animals, all created in a technique that involved rolling strips of wet newspaper.
So far, she has created Japanese macaques, lizards, sea lions, and a rhinoceros, among others.
“More than anything else, I’m particular about the realistic feel of the animals. Animals that live in nature are equal to us in the sense that we live together on this planet. Sometimes they sleep. Sometimes they eat. They are living ordinary everyday lives just like us. I would like keep insisting on reality and producing my life-sized work as much as possible in order to convey their lives.”
Chie’s preference for paper as her primary art medium stems from her childhood:
“I was born into a family that has operated a paper strip-making plant since my grandfather’s days. For that reason, I’ve been surrounded by an enormous volume of paper ever since I can remember. Needless to say, paper was something for me to play with. Sitting next to older women working hard in front of big machines, I kept interfering with their work.”
Chie currently runs an exhibit at MOAH:CEDAR in California through January 7, 2017, Colossal said.