Artist Creates Illuminated Sculptures Inside Glass Vessels By Using Traditional Japanese Paper Cutting

Published 2 years ago

Ayumi Shibata, an artist from Yokohama, Japan, creates intricate cut paper sculptures by employing traditional Japanese paper-cutting techniques. She uses translucent white paper that makes her sculptures pop out brilliantly with all the intricate details.

In an interview with DeMilked, the artist revealed, “I started paper cut 12 years ago when I was in NY. The city was noisy and everything was so fast but when I was cutting paper, I felt peace and quietness. So I just enjoyed paper cut to go back to myself.”

“I continued cut paper as my hobby for two years. After that, I got into art school and enrolled in mixed media and printmaking for four years. I started three-dimensional paper cut in the first year of school,” she added.

Today, we are featuring some of her cut paper sculptures placed inside illuminated glass vessels. Check out some of her beautiful masterpieces in the gallery below.

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Image source: Ayumi Shibata

Ayumi tried various mediums such as clay, metal, water color, wood, etc in art school but she didn’t feel any connection with any of them. “I naturally feel a connection when I’m working on paper. There’s no description, I just love paper,” she says.

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

The artist further explains that “Kami” is the Japanese word that means god, divinity, or spirit. It also means ‘paper. “In Japanese worship and in my religion of Shinto, invisible “Kami”; spirits dwell in various objects and events, places, as well as in our houses and in our bodies,” she elaborated.

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

“Ya-o-yorozu no kami, (literally means eight millions of spirits, uncountably many spirits ) who live together all around in the world. “Kami” is connected to nature. They move freely beyond time and the universe. Also “Kami” dwell on paper. In the religion of Shinto, paper is considered a sacred material,” the artist explains.

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

Ayumi uses her technique to express thankfulness to the “Kami” spirits for having been born in this life. She says, “Each cut,each page is a prayer. My process helps me to be quiet and clean up my mind in meditation or prayer. Through cutting the paper I feel purify my soul. By interacting with the “Kami” Spirit – material, I can connect to the “Kami” spirit’s world and our world.”

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

Ayumi’s paper sculptures are perfect balance of Yin and Yang – “Paper represents Yin, also represents material/our sensible world. The cut out space represents Yang, also represents immaterial/invisible world,” she says.

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

She further explains “Light represents spirit and life. The sun rises and breaths life into the world.”

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

The artist says, “I make space/Yang into paper/Yin, Yin and Yang melt together and become one finished piece, then light it up, light imbue spirit and life reside in.”

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

At last, Ayumi emphasized, “I believe my piece is a place to meet the material world and immaterial world.”

Image source: Ayumi Shibata

Saumya Ratan

Saumya is an explorer of all things beautiful, quirky, and heartwarming. With her knack for art, design, photography, fun trivia, and internet humor, she takes you on a journey through the lighter side of pop culture.

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