Paper Works in the Digital Age

As designers and makers we have been practicing the Japanese art of origami for over a decade, folding paper into the miniature and the monumental. The story of origami is one of a tacit tradition that has evolved alongside the digital. 

For hundreds of years the practice of origami involved hand folding paper into traditional forms that suggested nature. Origami arts was a relatively static medium until the early 20th century.

Paper folding as practiced by students of Josef Albers at the Bauhaus School of Art and Design translated the traditions of origami into that of paper engineering, with hand folding processes creating a slick aesthetic that mimicked machine production. 

The introduction of computer technology in the late 1960s opened up a new field of origami, ‘computational origami’, with new complexities and an increasing sophistication of paper folding techniques.

We are revisiting these hand craft techniques and exploring how digital technology can integrate with hand processes to make textiles and objects. Caroline is currently investigating this hybrid approach through Arts Council England funding Developing your Creative Practice focusing on laser cutting and other digital fabrication techniques within FabLabs.