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The history of origami: the art of paper

Matome Culture & Lifestyle
Wednesday, February 01, 2017 at 10:29

What is origami

Origami is the art of paper folding, which is often associated with Japanese culture. In modern usage, the word "origami" is used as an inclusive term for all folding practices, regardless of their culture of origin. The goal is to transform a flat sheet square of paper into a finished sculpture through folding and sculpting techniques.
Source: Wikipedia
Origami is a unique art culture peculiar to Japan. Actually there are similar culture in Europe, but Japanese origami developed far deeper and widely among people.
Most of Japanese elementary schools adopt origami into class to develop artistic sense. Therefore if you ask random Japanese to make some origami art, some of them likely to be able to make origami arts.
The paper used for origami is "origami paper" or "chiyogami".
Origami paper is a squared paper with various colors. chiyogami, on the other hand, is a squared paper with very decorated Japanese designs.
Origami paper
Origami paper
If you visit Japan and go to bookstore, you can easily find origami paper or chiyogami along with various books on origami art.

Now, let me introduce you about the history of origami and study how it developed in Japan.

The history of origami

At the beginning of 7th century, paper technology was imported from China. And as usual, Japanese people improved it and created Washi (和紙) which is thin but strong paper.
In early years, Washi was used for sutra copying or recording history and make books.
But soon they started to use Washi to wrap a gift to Gods. Afterward, Japanese people realized that when folding paper, there will be a beautiful crease on the paper.

At Muromachi era (1336 – 1573), Japanese distinguished family such as Ogasawara family and Ise family started to found a official manners to fold papers. This manner was used to wrap up gifts to someone. The Noshi paper culture today is the reminder of this manners.
The time comes closer to today at Edo era, Japanese people started to enjoy folding paper itself. It is the beginning of origami culture.

At 1797, the first book on origami was published which is called "秘傅千羽鶴折形" (Secret way to fold thousand paper cranes). This book explains how to make various unique paper cranes for detail.

秘傅千羽鶴折形
秘傅千羽鶴折形
秘傅千羽鶴折形
秘傅千羽鶴折形
At Meiji era (1868–1912), origami was adopted to kindergarten eduction. These education resulted in making origami to be a popular culture widely among Japanese people.

Let's take a look at beautiful and artistic origami art

@origami0825
折り紙職人@origami0825
「 キングドラゴン 」と 「 ブラックドラゴン 」木村良寿さんの「 おりがみのはこどうぶつ」より。
各15㎝折り紙2枚使用。
この2体の違いは、2本足か4本足かの違いです(^_^)
どちらもカッコイイ!
#折り紙作品 https://t.co/4bSfxLFjhv
https://t.co/4bSfxLFjhv
@origami0825
折り紙職人@origami0825
小松英夫さんの「サイ 」折り直しました(^o^)/ このサイ用に買ってきた厚手のタントで折ったら破れることもなく、折りやすく、重厚感も出ました(^^) #折り紙作品 https://t.co/LciyQ0f9Zw
https://t.co/LciyQ0f9Zw
@origami0825
折り紙職人@origami0825
「 クジラ ( Whale )」ライアン・ドン
折紙探偵団コンベンション集vol.21より。17.5㎝折り紙使用。
このユル可愛いクジラ大好きです(^_^)
#折り紙作品 https://t.co/yXzGjSHuMv
https://t.co/yXzGjSHuMv
@Origami_sekai
折り紙☆ペーパークラフトの世界@Origami_sekai
ふくろう。枝にとまって毛をふくらませてる感じがわかります。
素晴らしいです。 https://t.co/h7pB9QCurg
https://t.co/h7pB9QCurg
@hikohiko93
カミタニヒカル@hikohiko93
姪っ子ちゃんが遊びに来てたから一緒に折り紙して遊んでたらなんか楽しくなってきて作っちゃったよね🐟
昔よく遊んでたやつ〜〜イタリア国旗みたい https://t.co/trbao2zXE1
https://t.co/trbao2zXE1
@genki_6byou
本気は感動になる!!@genki_6byou
折り紙を本気で作るとこうなる https://t.co/CzN8x1qeNd
https://t.co/CzN8x1qeNd

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