For as long as I can remember, the driving impulses behind art, science, sculpture and math have felt deeply connected—all ways of interpreting our experiences in a language that's universal. A bit of our cultural treasure. All of us involved in this project have been energized by the challenge of making a film about ideas—their evolution, their beauty, their inevitable paradoxes and mystery. I'm proud of Eric beyond words. It screened at more than 45 international film festivals and was recognized with numerous audience and jury awards.
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There remains a collective sense of sorrow, from friends, acquaintances and strangers alike. As they converge on the unlikely medium of origami, these documentay and scientists reinterpret the world in paper, and bring forth a mix of bold sensibilities towards art, expressiveness, creativity and meaning. Muslim and Jewish students learn origami at a school in Israel.
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All of us involved in this project have been volds by the challenge of making a film about ideas—their evolution, their beauty, their inevitable paradoxes and mystery. Surprisingly, as a documentary project, this film has been less about telling a story and rather about finding an idea—layers of ideas.
Squirrel from handmade paper. When I first learned about the curious phenomenon of fine artists, scientists and mathematicians from all over the world working in the very same medium of origami, I knew there had to be something special about it—that in the simplicity of a paper square must be hiding some untold potential for new connections and ideas.
Between the Folds
It seems that when an artist dies, we lose a bit of ourselves. With the death of Eric Joisel, the French artist featured in Between the Folds, comes an immense and, in many ways, indescribable sense of loss. I'm grieving," shared another.
It pains me deeply to think of what more Eric would have done in the years ahead—thoughts that won't be had, things that won't be made, creations hhe never get to see.
The potential of an uncut paper square.
The comforting converse to this, of course, is the gift artists so generously endow us with: Their remarkable stories resonated so strongly with me upon abandoning my own former work, that I was determined to bring their inspiring stories of transformation to light. Eric was at the height of his career.
And, yes, grief follows. Messages of sadness were emailed, tweeted and posted from all corners of the world. For me, as a filmmaker, this has also been a project about transformation—not only of colds squares, but of people and lives also.
This led to the making of OBIT. Mere paper draws visionaries and virtuosos. Most of those featured in the film left traditional lives to devote themselves to the thing they love most—paperfolding: Origami as a tool to teach advanced mathematics. It received a Peabody Award in Talks about the role of realism in origami. It reveals origami itself as richer and more intricate than you could imagine A bit of our cultural treasure.
Portraits of Eric—one from Vietnamanother from Australia.
For, from a simple worktable docunentary a farmhouse outside Paris—armed with fantastic imagination and a mere stack of paper—Eric gave the world a most glorious gift.
The artist incorporating pastels. Australian Eric by Steven Casey. For as long as I can remember, the driving impulses behind art, science, sculpture and math have felt deeply connected—all ways of interpreting our experiences in a language that's universal. The potential to see things differently. Documentayr by Lynton Gardiner.
It screened at more than 45 international film festivals and was recognized with numerous audience and jury awards. I'm proud of Eric beyond words. Therefore, it was of great importance that its themes be presented subtly and flexibly, so that every viewer can experience the film documdntary ways that are both universally resonant and personally meaningful.