May 6, 2007 10:44 PM   Subscribe

Moneygami is origami made from U.S. currency; the subtle genius lies in the way the artist incorporates the prints on the dollar bills into the facial characteristics of the finished figures. More moneygami here. Via.
posted by jonson (14 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
Dollar bill vagina
posted by puke & cry at 10:53 PM on May 6, 2007 [1 favorite]

These are fantastic, but there's one I wouldn't touch with a 3.5m Cracoviak.
posted by rob511 at 11:05 PM on May 6, 2007

That's pretty damn cool.

In college I wanted to learn origami so I could construct little barnyard scenes during seminars. Unofrtunately that dream never materialized. Moneygami would've been even cooler.
posted by slogger at 11:07 PM on May 6, 2007

omg jonson, those are amazing! Dang, you find great stuff!

The moneygami sculptures are actually beautiful and surprisingly inventive.They are small works of art. Wonderful.

Banknote tessellations by Eric Gjerde.

Here's a fun cat moneygami. A shirt and tie moneygami. And other links to moneygami pages.
posted by nickyskye at 11:11 PM on May 6, 2007

I guess "moneygami" is the obvious name folks would've come up with for this, but of course it's a little dumb because the "gami" part means "paper", and the "ori" part means "fold". So we're talking "money paper" here as a meaning. "Orimoney" doesn't quite roll off the tongue the same way, though, so I guess it's unavoidable. Loan words from other languages and how they eventually get sqeezed into new boxes is an ever-interesting phenomenon.

Oh, and the pieces are nice! Thanks for the post.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:58 PM on May 6, 2007

These are amazing!
posted by LeeJay at 12:31 AM on May 7, 2007

I saw a several books of these at the LATimes Book Fair last weekend, and I almost bought them for my son. And then I realised... teaching a 5 year old to make fabulous origami out of Mom & Dad's precious money maybe isn't the best way to occupy his time.
(Also, we NEED that money for smokes, hooch, and antique humor magazines. He can use our flimsy reciepts for his arty-farty swans and frogs and what-have-ya.) Nice FPP anyways, jonson!
posted by maryh at 1:07 AM on May 7, 2007

pamy's got other interesting posts on her site, too. The Rapex sounded like an idea whose time has come.
posted by pax digita at 4:55 AM on May 7, 2007

Hi there!

As a serious origami addict (and thanks for the links to my pieces!) I always appreciate seeing paperfolding links on Metafilter.

usually, this is called money folding. Sometimes also called bill folding, or banknote folding, or other such derivative terms. I'm not really sold on the Moneygami name- there's a real trend lately to do such things, primarily because people figure out "oh, that must be money origami" or something to that effect.

Origami itself is an invented term; while it comes from oru (to fold) and kami (paper), my understanding is that these were put together sometime in the last century in the West as a Japanese-ish terminology for the art. (Just like papiroflexia (paperfolding) in Spain, an invented term for a traditional pastime.) Old things I have seen in Japan refer to traditional paperfolding as orikata, etc. I'm not an origami historian, though, so details on this are a little fuzzy for me.

Anyway, I think I have seen these pictures of folded money before- the use of patterns in the paper to create the eyes and facial features is rather distinct. I'm not sure the person posting these images is actually the creator, or if they lifted them from somewhere else. Several of the designs are well-known patterns by other origami artists, in any case.

Money folding is amazingly popular- I think because it's something we see every day, a commonplace item, transformed into something unique and unexpected. I don't like to leave folded tips at restaurants, because I know the staff would rather spend the money; but occasionally I fold something anyway and inevitably a small crowd of people gather around and look at it when it's completed. (So make sure to fold a nice tip!)
posted by EricGjerde at 6:11 AM on May 7, 2007

I was going to say, Eric, that if the average person knew how to do just a couple of these designs, they'd be a hit at every bar and restaurant they ever went to... :)
posted by darkstar at 10:09 AM on May 7, 2007

Glad you came to the thread Eric, thought you might. :) Hey, I went to an art and science lecture last week and met the guy, George Hart, who does the modular kirigami, thought of you. You'd like him and I think he'd like you too, in a talking geometry and origami/kirigami kind of way.
posted by nickyskye at 10:13 AM on May 7, 2007

Recently I made a shirt as a birthday present for a girlfriend. It was easy and extremely well-received! The above author is the same one that nickyskye linked to above, but sans the annoying header.
posted by Xoder at 10:31 AM on May 7, 2007

Yes, I know George as a friend of a friend- hoping to get to know him better in days to come. we both have some work in an upcoming book on kirigami, actually- although of course his pieces are the real show stealers :)

I love simple designs like this money folding, or the little things that kids fold from gum wrappers, etc. They're wonderfully viral memes that spread throughout a school or equivalent young population faster than a bad case of the flu! I've long been tempted to collect a bunch of fun little paper folding things together in a book for kids.

My favorite construction as a child was a paper catapult- what little schoolboy is complete without projectile weapons made of paper?
posted by EricGjerde at 4:49 PM on May 7, 2007

So cool Eric that you're going to get to know George better. He's an excellent speaker and a very likeable polymath.

Neat you're getting a viral meme paper toy book together. The moneygami (it's a good name, however linguistically incorrect) is something I really think kids will like.

The big paper folding meme when I was a little rascal was a cootie catcher/fortune teller.
posted by nickyskye at 7:30 PM on May 7, 2007

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