Akira Yoshizawa: what I did not know about Origami…

If you had clicked on Google today,  like myself and the millions of people out there, you would have noticed their interesting image today, which is this:

I was curious enough to click on the Google  icon today because I liked the origami styled words  and I am glad I did because I learnt a little more about Akira Yoshizawa (1911-2005) who was considered to be the grandmaster of origami.   Akira Yoshizawa is  still highly revered in Japan and worldwide  for his contribution in raising origami to living arts and today, 14 March was his birthday.

Akira Yoshizawa contributed vastly to art of origami once considered as  childrens’ craft to pass time turning it  into figurative art, now embraced by so many nowadays and yet I wonder how many of us knew of Akira Yoshizawa?

Before learning of this today, I have not even heard of Akira Yoshizawa and  his amazing passion for origami .Like many out there, I just took origami as it is without thinking too much about how much history there is behind origami, the art of folding . But today, my perspective has changed because of this one man and the impact he had on this art form.

I personally find origami to be one craft which perplexes me because my limited amount of patience but undeniably,it is one beautiful craft which is portable, easy to learn even when sitting on your own couch and in your own time!:)

Akira Yoshizawa

Akira Yoshizawa was so dedicated to his art that he left his full-time occupation as a technical draftsman to pursue origami and due to this dedication, he lived in poverty for 20 years, earning money by selling preserved fish door to door ( now that is real passion!)

His   passion paid off because at the end of 1951, a Japanese magazine commissioned him to fold the 12 signs of the Japanese zodiac to illustrate its January 1952 issue.

The work raised his  reputation, leading to exhibitions in Japan and, in 1955, a show at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.

I am so glad there was once a man who loved creating art through folding using his understanding of geomatry, because without Akira Yoshizawa, origami would not be where it is today.

Monkey by A.Yoshizawa

To read more about Akira Yoshizawa, please click on the following links:

The New York Times and Akira Yoshizawa Origami Biography

Elephant: A Yoshizawa

At the moment, still really busy at work and not having enough energy at the end of the  day to work on my own craft..(sigh such is the life of a desk-jockey). I hope today’s sharing makes up for the lack of the crafting . xoRachel@NotaHati


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