429: Satoshi Kamiya’s Lyrebird

You may have guessed I am a bit of a fanboi when it comes to the works of Satoshi  Kamiya:

As previously stated, my wife and I spent some time in a rainforest cabin and that inspired me to have a go at his Lyrbird – a deliciously complicated crumple that needs to result in a characteristic fan tail, 2 side tail things, wings, legs, body and head.

I am happy to report, although this presentation of the model is not my first fold (I left that for the cabin owner), this fold was just as successful as the first one.

I had some lovely mango and banana leaf paper, bought recently and I had sort of ear-marked it for this model, however I had NO IDEA how difficult it would be to coax this lumpy/twiggy paper into taking the much-folded shape without ANY paper fatigue – yep, fairly proud of that effort actually.

There is so much to love about this model – scale, morphology, form – so good – we come to expect that of a Satoshi fold but it further underlies his design genius. There is much about this model that would probably horrify “pure” origamists, as the density of paper, layering and torsion of some of the folded elements (base of the fantail, 2 side tail things) have NO chance of staying in place without help.

I used a combination of wire and MC (methyl cellulose – a paper stiffener) to shape and pose this model – the only way I could encourage this paper to maintain a stance/pose – I think it is beautiful – do not really care if you disagree. There is a certain karma in this model – the paper is made of leaf litter – Lyrebirds make their home in leaf litter … it gets all “circle of lifey” when you think that way.

The best thing is the model backlit -you see the twigs, leaves and other bits of random fibre – so lovely. I MUST buy more of this paper, it is truly beautiful but I have to report that folding it resulted in my first EVER origami-caused SPLINTER – lol.

I made a base, from a discarded jar lid, covered with a small offcut – it is sculptural – when completely dry it will be spray-sealed and goes straight to the top shelf of my paper museum.

It may be obvious that I am so happy to have made this one so nice – I took my time, concentrated on accuracy, rested the paper after each furious bending session (yes, that helps it to not crumble) and was very particular about when I “set the crease”, using finger pressure until I was sure a crease was a necessary keeper – the end result is a lovely thing (and I have a little of the paper left over to make something else).

Reading about specialist papers, I think I “should” have painted the paper with MC and let it dry all over BEFORE I folded it – it would have been more paper-like and less fabric like I guess – must try that technique with some unryu tissue some time.

6 thoughts on “429: Satoshi Kamiya’s Lyrebird

  1. Nice work! Although, it is EXTREMELY difficult to fold this kind of paper without treating it with mc. Its practically like fabric. Mcing the paper beforehand makes things a LOT easier.

    1. it was very fabric-like, indeed. After the folding I then stabilised the pose with MC – I had folded it first using Nicolas terry’s “tissue foil” and it splayed and fell apart, so I do not think this model is achievable without help (MC, wire, foil core paper etc) – the curly tail things need help to keep their shape, the wings do not naturally cover the base of the tail etc.

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