Mathematical Paper Folding Exhibit

- Introduction
- Interview with Dr Robert Lang
- Single Cut Origami
- Curved Crease Origami
- Business Card Menger Sponge
- Links to Other Sites and Resources

Curved Crease Origami

The cosmos of the classical origamist is a square, and, hence, for practical and aesthetic reasons the traditional origami crease has been a straight line. In the 1970’s, however, the great pioneer of computational origami Dr David Huffman began to investigate the possibilities of curved creases. Dr Huffman, a theoretical computer scientist who discovered a particularly elegant method for encoding information, spent thirty years exploring the mathematics of straight and curved folds. Initially inspired by the work of Ron Resch, another pioneering technical folder, Huffman was the first to formally describe the mathematical relationships underlying a wide range of folded forms. Though he was interested in many kinds of folded structures – particularly what are known as “action origami” figures, which change shape dynamically – Huffman became increasingly interested in how to make paper bend and curve. Over the last two decades of his life, he developed an extraordinary body of work that remains unique in the annals of origami history. The models he left behind constitute some of the most beautiful and idiosyncratic folded structures ever devised – including the beautiful concentric circular tower pictured below. This image was used with the kind permission of Dr. Huffman’s family, and we thank his daughter Elise Huffman for making it available to the Institute.

See New York Times article about Dr Huffman’s curved folding.

Dr. Huffman’s concentric circular tower.
Photo by Tony Grant. Courtesy of the Huffman family.

Very few origamists have attempted to work with curved folds. One who is doing so is Dr. Jeannine Mosely, an electrical engineer and computer scientist in Boston. Mosely, who is also an expert on business card origami and minimalist origami, is working on a series of curved models that resemble buds and seedpods. Her first “Bud” model was featured as an Artist’s Project in Cabinet Issue 17, in conjunction with the IFF’s article on computational origami theorist Dr. Robert Lang.

Dr. Jeannine Mosely's "bud" models.
Download pdf of instructions for making your own Origami Bud.
Courtesy of Brian McMullen/Cabinet magazine

Download pdf of Crease Pattern for Origami Bud.

Designed and diagrammed by Dr. Jeannine Mosely
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