A festive world of paper

The sight of glittering papers, fancy shapes and miniature models brings a smile to the face. “Origami is all about spreading happiness,” says Ruchie Bhalla, vice president of Origami Oritai as she welcomes Metrolife to the annual origami exhibition ‘Love and Peace’.

The word ‘Utsav’ written at the entrance of the gallery, is a reference to the festivals that form the theme of this event.

Festivals stand for celebration and spread happiness and so does the sight of exhibits that are displayed inside the gallery hosting the exhibition by Origami Oritai.

Infusing life to paper, the members of the club have put up their hard work to create a dream land with paper. From the Tulip Festival of Kashmir to Hinamatsuri (Dolls Festival), the exhibition covers all the major festivals of Japan and India.

It is exciting to see cut outs of Japanese people in the model depicting Diwali. A true amalgamation of Indian culture and Japanese art! What one falls in love with is the detailing. For instance, The Tulip Festival of Kashmir shows not just the ‘golden shi­kara’ laden with tulips but also represents the river or pond in which it is floating through blue paper.

Similarly, the view of the set up of Diwali, with artificial lights lifting the display, a model temple with cutout of Goddess Lakshmi placed in it, is beautiful.
The finesse of the cotton silk flowers makes one wonder if these are really made from paper? These flowers on a tree make way for a perfect set up for the festival of Holi. Alongside, the Holi as played by Radha-Krishna is also displayed.

Though one is familiar with these festivals, for Indian vie­wers, it is a visual treat to see the Hinamatsuri, Kodomono-Hi (Children’s Day), Tanabata (Star Festival), Natsu Matsuri (Summer Festival) and Oshogatsu (Japanese New Year).

To celebrate the growth and happiness of their girls, the Japanese celebrate Hinamatsuri. A string of hanging cubes (fo­lded in complicated but beautiful patte­rns) represents this festival. While this is for the girls, the Japanese boys get attention on Kodomono-Hi. Though now celebrated for all children, earlier the festival started for boys in Edo period.       
There is also a thematic display of Christmas (with Santa and sledge) and Indian Republic Day. The latter is elaborate with the depiction of the who­le boulevard where tableaus are shows moving towards the India Gate along with dancers in their paraphernalia. Mind you, all this is created by folding paper in different ways!  
The exhibition is on display at The Japan Foundation till December 16.

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