Amazing Paper Art: Li Hongbo

The art that fascinates me is the art created by an someone who has an idea and follows it. Even if other people don’t love it, even if others don’t understand it, the creative force that changes the world and how we understand it continues making art.

Li Hongbo works in Beijing. He turns pure white paper into art. Pure White Paper is the name of the exhibition you want to see if it comes your way. He creates amazing sculptures that expand and collapse. They look like porcelain, and move like magic. Here’s the video.

Li is a book editor and designer, and spent thousands of hours gluing sheets of paper together to form shapes inspired by the Chines paper gourd children’s toys. After that, it became art. You can see more photographs by seeing the exhibition at the Dominik Mersch Gallery in Australia.

Quinn McDonald is amazed at the inspiration that makes art.


18 thoughts on “Amazing Paper Art: Li Hongbo

  1. Astonishing! The first one I saw made me gasp. After that, I was just mesmerized, and wanted the museum representative to stop talking, and show me more, LOL. Thanks for the link.

  2. I’ve been thinking about the process of “having an idea and following it.” Maybe one reason why I’m not an artist is that it doesn’t work that way for me. One thing to keep in mind here, of course, is that I’m trying to examine my cognitive system with itself, and recursion is often tricky. But as near as I can tell, the ideas I apply to things come afterward, or at least in between, and there’s never just one idea, and there generally isn’t just one sequence of events or connections.

    Ideas appear to be so abundant as to be effectively infinite. I don’t mean to suggest that “an idea” is the kind of thing that exists independent of everything else; this is just a convenience of expression. To me ideas are very much like combinations. Three objects — a rock, a ribbon, and a box — can be put in six different combinations. And that’s only the basic physical sequences; it doesn’t count combinations like “things can be put in the box”, “ribbons can be tied”, things like that. Each one of those combinations is like an idea. The number of combinations skyrockets as you add objects. There are 24 combinations of 4 items, 120 for 5, and so on. Again that’s just the basic sequences; the most elementary notion of “combination” there is.

    Human minds traffic in rather more sophisticated sorts of combinations, and perceive more kinds of things than just independent objects. Numbers so large it doesn’t make any sense to try to express them arise immediately. Hence “infinite”. The ideas are there; I just notice some of them.

    Then there’s sequence, acting and noticing combinations where each each act suggests more combinations and each combination suggests more actions — except it’s not just one sequence; it’s many, and I strongly suspect they’re not sequential in the conventional sense. This is difficult to express, so in the interest of what brevity there remains (hah!) I’ll leave that for another time.

    • Yes, I can see what you mean and agree with you. But when I write, I rarely write in universal truths. I write in lightning flashes of understanding, and that means a fraction of a second of what I see lit up, and never the world in full sunlight.

  3. Wow; amazing is right! What fantastical creations…thanks, Quinn. More proof that there are absolutely no limits to the force which is Creativity. I love it when people’s imaginations becomes reality.

  4. I see it but it’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that it’s made of layers and layers of paper. It looks like marble sculptures. Fantastic! I hope his show comes this way.

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