Paper, Glass, Light: The Magnificant Creations of Ayumi Shibata

Under Ayumi Shibata’s hands, paper turns into magic. Using dozens of layers of paper for a single project, she constructs whole cities and landscapes which she then places in illuminated glass vessels. The end result is both personal and spiritual. “Kami is the Japanese word meaning ‘god’, ‘divinity’, or ‘spirit’,” she explains on her website, “but it also means ‘paper’.”

Working within this cultural framework, Shibata uses the traditional method of Japanese paper cutting to bring attention to the delicate relationship we as humans have with the environment. “In the religion of Shinto, white paper is considered as a sacred material,” she writes.

But it took Shibata some time and experimentation with different materials to find her creative voice. “Because my mother is a quilt and patchwork maker, I started to play with needles, string and left over fabrics in her atelier shop and at home when I was a child,” she recalled in an interview with ModeArte. “That is the foundation of my art.”

As a teenager, she got into music, and sang and wrote songs. She switched gears after moving to New York. That was also when she started to make art pieces by paper while taking a stained glass workshop. “I enrolled in the Printmaking and Sculpture, Mixed media department for four years in the National Academy School in New York under Maurizio Pellegrin and Kathy Caraccio,” she notes. “During that time in NY, I had several group shows and two solo shows in soho,NY and Omote-sando, Tokyo. In 2015, I moved to Paris.”

Nowadays her work is showcased around the world both in group and solo exhibitions. But you can also peek into her paper cities by following her on Instagram.

View this post on Instagram

パンドラの壺・かみのてのなか The Pandora’s pot. In the Jar -within the hands of god- 闇の中に浮かぶひかりは、希望のひかり 全ての生きものが授かったわけみたま、魂の輝き それはパンドラの器に残った希望という一粒のひかり ____________________________________ ・柴田あゆみ/ Ayumi shibata ・夜明け-かみのてのなか/ the dawn is breaking -In the Jar- within the hands of god ・グラスの中に広がる小さな紙の世界は、私たちの世界(ミクロ)、地球や宇宙、他の宇宙、次元を表しています。大きな森は、私たちの宇宙の外(マクロ)創造の源を表しています。 森羅万象の中にカミ(魂などのマナ)が宿るという自然崇拝を基に、私は紙を使い作品を作り出しています。 カミは時間、空間を越えて、あらゆる万物の中に宿るという考えから、多くのものや事柄に対し”畏敬や畏怖の念を抱く”という考えがあります。 またそれは、ものを大切にする、大事にするという考えにつながり、様々なものにカミが寄り付くと考え寄り代として祀ってきました。 さまざまなものが、すぐに捨てられる現代世界。 一枚の紙も、命が宿る宝になる。 私たちは万物、自然、様々なものに生かされている感謝と畏怖の念を忘れずに共存することができるよう、心と繋がれるよう、思いを込めて作品を切りだしています。 Let’s us go back to humanity. ・こんなにも世の中はクリエイティブで溢れている“を知ることで、心ある世界を共有する事ができという目的に共感、心ある世界を世界と共有できますよう。 ・@artgoeson2020 #artgoeson #アートゴーズオン _____________________________________________ #oneness #onelove #oneworld #sunrise #dawnisbreaking #ayumishibata #ayumishibatart #柴田あゆみ #inspiredbynature #loveandlight #lightart #light #lightandshadow #handmade #cutout #paperart #papercut #paper #japanese #artist in #japan #everydayblessings #dreamon #world #thankyou for the #guidance #inthejar #inthejah

A post shared by 𝙰𝚢𝚞𝚖𝚒 𝚂𝚑𝚒𝚋𝚊𝚝𝚊 (@ayumishibatart) on