Ten years ago Osaka born paper artist Tetsuya Nagata started collecting wooden moulds with which Japanese traditional sweets are made. Having collected more than 2,000 molds, Nagata created three dimensional embossed groupings of sea breams, peonies, chrysanthemums, deities and more. The material used is Japanese paper, washi, made from mulberry, mitsumata, and ganpi. By pressing Nishinouchi washi into the carved wooden molds he created delicate sculptural works that celebrate tradition with a contemporary flair. He learned this technique of natural sculpting at Tokyo University of the Arts Faculty of Fine Arts.
“I would like to leave a memory of Japanese beauty and tradition that people have forgotten. I am fascinated by the beauty of Japanese design that has been put into wooden moulds. Those moulds have in themselves the history of each craftsman’s work.”
You can follow the artist here on his website.
Images: Courtesy of Tetsuya Nagata.