Paper birds
September 29, 2014 5:14 AM   Subscribe

Diana Beltran Herrera sculpts beautiful birds out of paper. She's currently working on a series based on postage stamps; you can see some of the new birds on her Facebook page. [via]
posted by jacquilynne (12 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Wow! Her work is exquisite.
posted by Westringia F. at 6:28 AM on September 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

Absolutely gorgeous, thank you!
posted by spinturtle at 6:41 AM on September 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

Absolutely unreal. I bet those tropical birds were fun to make.

I wonder how she keeps the paper from absorbing the oil from her skin. One photo shows her holding a bird in her palm. I assume she must wear gloves when she's working.
posted by cranberrymonger at 7:33 AM on September 29, 2014

Amazing and beautiful work! I especially like how she shows her process in some of the photos on her Facebook page, the interior structure of the birds is really clever. Thanks for posting!
posted by blacktshirtandjeans at 7:34 AM on September 29, 2014

I would like a flock of these. However, I assume I can't afford them. And if I could afford them, I would want them for my solarium, which is a terrible place to put beautiful, colourful, irreplaceable things.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 8:14 AM on September 29, 2014

Absolutely gorgeous, and such a cool intersection of different arts (paper cutting, sculpting, maybe even a little taxidermy in there...)
posted by fermezporte at 8:37 AM on September 29, 2014

Herrera's work seeks to explore the chillingly disengaged relationship between humans and nature in modern society. Using paper as her primary medium she is able to present notions of temporality and change, emphasizing the process of transformation that continuously occurs in nature as well as humankind.

I've known several artists, and they each tended to have a "thing" they do. For one of them, it was windows. Photographs of windows, drawings of windows, etc. For another, it was teeth.

I'm always amused by descriptions like the above, because whenever my artist friends were getting ready for a gallery showing, they'd have to come up with something similar. Some deep explanation of how their work was "An exploration of the negotiated space between..." blah blah. Of course, they just really thought windows were neat. Or teeth.

That's not to knock them, or Ms. Herrera at all. Maybe those things are really what she has in mind when she is creating her birds. But I'll be relieved if there comes a time in which we can enjoy art in itself, and recognize things for their inherent value apart from whatever deep philosophical motivation ostensibly underlies their creation.

There's nothing wrong with making and enjoying beautiful things. And these birds are beautiful.
posted by jingzuo at 9:22 AM on September 29, 2014

Excellent birds.
posted by benito.strauss at 10:31 AM on September 29, 2014 [2 favorites]

Artist statements are, yeah. When I'm looking at art that I don't get, I look for the statements to get a sense of what the point is, from whence I can decide if my not getting it is my fault or if the project is just dumb. When it comes to stuff like this, where there's so much intrinsic value in the beauty and the craft that it doesn't need to have some kind of meaning tacked on, artists statements usually just strike me as silly made-up bullshit. Which means they're possibly also silly made-up bullshit in the cases where I rely on them for understanding. But, oh well.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:58 AM on September 29, 2014

I assume that I'm not the target of most artist's statements; they're there for the people who might fund the artist. And all of us, artists included, have had to sling massive amounts of bullpucky to earn our daily bread.
posted by benito.strauss at 11:20 AM on September 29, 2014

What impresses me most about this work is the artist's mastery of feathers, their functions and structures. Birds' feathers are remarkably specialized and the paper versions demonstrate that admirably. Wonderful work.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:08 AM on September 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

Wow — those are remarkable and beautiful.

It's interesting to me that the less-spectacular, non-tropical birds actually work better for me than the tropical ones. I'm not sure why that is. Maybe because I used to have a parrot and so am intimately familiar with the borderline-iridescent details of their feathers, which paper can't replicate? (And mine wasn't even a macaw or anything, she was a blue-headed Pionus, a relatively drab-colored parrot. Except for the tail feathers. I still have a collection of her shed tail feathers.)
posted by Lexica at 8:03 PM on September 30, 2014

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