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Sefton student turns origami hobby into art

06 July 2015

John Edwards

Muriel Hayes-Sinclair combines paper and technology for 3d sculpture

A Sefton student has used her passion for origami to create an impressive 3d sculpture as part of her final year project at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

Muriel Hayes-Sinclair, from Hightown, spent two months carefully building her four-layer sculpture before using the latest technology to project an image and video on to it, bringing the piece to life.

An origami enthusiast since the age of eight, Muriel has turned her hobby into an art form since joining the University’s BA (Hons) Fine Art course. However, as traditional origami naturally causes paper to reduce in size, the 22-year-old had to adapt her work for her final project.

Utilising origami tessellations, which allows artists to connect individual pieces, Muriel was able to create a large paper sculpture. She then used computer software to project an image of fairy lights onto the sculpture, as well as a video which gives the perception that the piece is moving.

The former Holy Family Catholic High School pupil hopes the technology behind her work draws the audience into her abstract piece.

“Since joining UCLan my lecturers have encouraged me to experiment with origami so I’ve progressed my use from craft to a fine art form.”

She said: “My main aim is to make people want to travel into my work. I don’t want them to just look at it, but feel as if they want to go into it and the 3d projection software allowed me to achieve this. The colour in my piece comes from a photo of fairy lights and I like how they make it vibrant and highlight different shapes, which I wanted to show to my audience.

“I was inspired by projection artist Pipilotti Rist. Her installations are so big you feel like you are travelling through a story of her work.”

A chance visit to a charity shop as a child started Muriel’s passion, when her mum bought her a children’s origami book.

She added: “When I looked at the book I was really impressed that you could make a penguin or a whale. I found it magical that you could make toys from paper and that’s what excited me.

“Since joining UCLan my lecturers have encouraged me to experiment with origami so I’ve progressed my use from craft to a fine art form. I’ve enjoyed learning new ways to use origami and I’ve realised I don’t have to create anything specific, but that it can something really abstract, which was my aim with this piece.”