sipho mabona

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A swarm of locusts made entirely out of money. New installation by Origami artist Sipho Mabona on display at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles.

Money, our prime signifier of both ambition and perdition. Money has gone from being an elementary medium of exchange to being a means of exploitation: a colossal cloud of hot money [and incomprehensible financial instruments] buzzes above the global economy like a biblical swarm of locust - Sipho

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Swiss origami artist Sipho Mabona believes that origami deserves its place alongside painting or photography as an independent and serious art form. That is why Sipho Mabona intends to produce more conceptual work and to take part in exhibitions. Through his work, he wants to make statements that mean something to people, to examine areas of conflict in everyday life, to stimulate thought and reflection, to encourage critical analysis. For him, folding paper is about more than simply reproducing objects; it is a beautiful metaphor for life itself: “When you come into the world, you are not a finished article. You have to find your own way, to develop and work on yourself”.

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Paper art  from Mabona Origami

Sipho Mabona is a Swiss origami master. He started making paper planes when he was just five years old but ran out of designs for the planes by the time he was 15 and turned to other inspirations. Mabona was the first-ever foreigner to have his work grace the cover of the official magazine of the Japan Origami Academic Society (JOAS) Convention in 2008. Mabona was commissioned by an advertising agency to create an origami stop motion video for Japanese sports brand ASICS. The video won a Grand Prize at the Eurobest, gold at the New York festival, gold at the London International Awards, silver at the Clio in Miami and two times bronze at ADC Germany.  via wikipedia

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Sipho Mabona’s newest origami installation, The Plague, is an awesome swarm of locusts made entirely out of money! It's now showing at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles until August 26, 2012.

“As he says, ‘Money, our prime signifier of both ambition and perdition. Money has gone from being an elementary medium of exchange to being a means of exploitation: a colossal cloud of hot money [and incomprehensible financial instruments] buzzes above the global economy like a biblical swarm of locust. Thus money as bane. Yet money per se, plain as the one-dollar-bill, always retains its basic ability to function as a pragmatic unit of accounting for goods and services. Hence money as blessing.’

Each single specimen was folded from an uncut square of US currency sheet and the entire installation took Mabona 4 to 5 hours to complete. It will be on display, alongside approximately 150 other works from more than 40 international artists, in the museum’s exhibition Folding Paper: The Infinite Possibilities of Origami. It’s a thought-provoking look at the modern advances of origami through contemporary artworks, origami-related woodblock prints, murals, videos, an interactive origami-making station and even an origami dome tent that visitors may enter. This is the first major exhibition to explore the rich history of paper folding both in Japan and Europe.”

[via My Modern Metropolis]