Living in the Big Apple means easy access to all of the best museums (OK, Louvre fans, some of the best museums!). An all-time kid fave is the American Museum of Natural History, especially awesome for its cool event line up year round! Holiday time is no exception. OK you’ve seen a bunch of trees out there, but have you seen an origami tree? Standing at 13 feet, the origami tree proudly stands on display from now until January 11th 2015. An annual tradition for more than forty years, the tree is delightfully decorated with more than 800 hand-folded paper models created by local, national and international origami artists.
Each holiday season, the traditional origami tree follows a different theme, and this year’s is Night at the Museum. Enjoy origami models of Theodore Roosevelt, the Tyrannosaurs rex, the Rapa Nui Moai (Easter Island figure), and many more. Connecting the tree, the museum and one of every kids’ favorite fantasy flicks is a surefire winner.
How the tree is made
Ros Joyce and Talo Kawasaki, volunteers from OrigamiUSA and the designers of the Museum’s Origami Holiday Tree, seek inspiration in many ways. “Often,” says Joyce, “we see something in the Museum that we want on the tree that has never been folded, so we have to design a model and find a way to fold it.” The duo solicits origami masters from all over the globe and from every age group to make the ornaments adorning the tree. Any more needed is not a problem, as their archives are bursting with designs used over the 40 year history.
After amassing the ornaments, Joyce and Marshall start designing the completed work. “Ultimately we look at the color, size, and texture,” Joyce explains. “We sketch to see how the models are going to fit together to give the tree depth and shape.” The decorating takes less than a week, and then voila, it is revealed to the world. “It’s a long process but it’s a labor of love,” Joyce says. “In the end it’s all worth it to see the kids and adults light up when they see the tree year after year.” – Quotes via The American Museum of Natural History
Learn how to origami
Think you have what it takes? OK, if you’re not quite there yet, OrigamiUSA runs many classes at the American Museum of Natural History throughout the year, ranging from beginners classes to advanced workshops.
Upcoming events in the month of December include:
Special Folding Fun Session – December 7th
Origami For Members – December 14th
So gather the family for some fun, creative time!
Visit the museums website for an online application to be a part of the origami extravaganza!
-Via Origami at the museum www.amnh.org