Artist Cybèle Young's wondrous miniature tableaus are made entirely from paper. The Canadian artist has perfected the meticulous practice of Japanese papercrafting, rendering ordinary objects using colorful pieces of paper. Her sculptural works are surprising, in color and detail that deceive the eye into thinking they are in fact the real thing.
Young focuses on one particular kind of paper for her delicate sculptures: Japanese paper that can be emblazoned with etchings or markings, and are printed in lurid color. Armed with this fine paper, the artist sets out to recreate elements from ordinary life, assigning them a fantastical quality with her sculptural creations.
Snippets of Young’s life appear in paper, such as food from her kitchen, finds from a shopping trip, patches of grass from a trip to the park, animals and even elements from the interior of her own home. Each of these inspirations is represented in her sculptural scenes, but then Young allows paper and imagination to morph into scenes of fantasy.
In one, a delicate guitar case is rendered perfectly in paper on a shelf. Above it, the artist’s imagination runs wild, using the shape of the guitar case to create a series of colorful organic shapes that seem to burst from the picture plane.
With the minimal materials of Japanese paper, glue and scissors, Young is able to reinterpret mundane life into colorful, vibrant scenes, inviting viewers to look at their own lives through a new, creative lens.
All images © Cybèle Young, Courtesy of Forum Gallery, New York