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Explore Origami and Paper Sculpture through Woodson Art Museum Programs

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WAUSAU, WISCONSIN: Paper artistry comes to life at the Woodson Art Museum through snow sculpture, hands-on origami and paper sculpture programs, and a community art project, Flock to Fold, a mobile featuring paper cranes folded by visitors.

Elegant origami artworks and intricately cut paper sculptures comprise “Folding Paper: The Infinite Possibilities of Origami” and “Calvin Nicholls: Paper Sculpture by Design,” on view through April 7 at the Woodson Art Museum. With Nicholls and origami artists as inspiration, an array of hands-on programs explores the creative possibilities of paper. Visit www.lywam.org for a complete listing of events and programs.

During Calvin Nicholls five-day residency, “Paper Cuts,” March 5-9, the Canadian paper sculptor leads a workshop for all ages, programs for school children during Museum visits, a program for individuals with blindness or low vision, and a gallery walk.

Night Out @ the Woodson in March features Calvin Nicholls leading a combined Art History 101/Hands-on Art: Sculpting Paper, 5:30-7 p.m., when he shares how he creates striking three-dimensional paper sculptures of animals and directs participants in fashioning their own paper creations. The noon-hour version of Art History 101: Paper Cuts Revealed will be presented, Wednesday, March 20, 12:15-1 p.m., by Museum educator Catie Anderson.

Individuals with vision impairments or blindness hear Nicholls explain his process and experience his artwork by feeling the texture and detail of the artist’s intricate work in Art Beyond Sight, Saturday, March 9, 10:30 a.m.-Noon. Call 715-845-7010 or email jhintz@lywam.org to register.

All ages accompany the paper sculptor for a Nicholls Gallery Walk, Saturday, March 9, 1-2 p.m., to learn more about how he creates his detailed depictions of animals.

This year’s snow sculpture carved by Team USA Snow Sculptors, February 1-2, is inspired by Nicholls’ paper sculpture of a tree frog. Mike Martino, Tom Queoff, and Mike Sponholtz, worked their winter magic for the 23rd year at the Museum.

The most famous of traditional origami forms – the crane – has become associated with long life and peace. Today, origami spans cultures thanks to internationally recognized paper-folding notations of numbers and arrows that enable people worldwide to follow directions to create forms and contribute to collaborative public projects. Everyone is invited throughout the exhibition to fold origami cranes to add to a community art project, Flock to Fold, which remains on view through April 7. The folded animal shapes that introduce many children to origami will be featured in Art Park, the Museum’s interactive family gallery, where all ages can explore the art of origami.

Sunday-afternoon SPARK! programs for individuals with memory loss facilitate social interactions with an accompanying friend or family member as pairs discuss ideas sparked by Nicholls’ paper sculpture animals, March 17, 1-2:30 p.m. After the gallery experience, participants engage in an art activity. Call 715-845-7010 to register for this free, monthly programs.

Toddlers, 18 months-4 years, gather for Toddler Tuesday: Animal Origami, Oh My!, March 19; 10:30 a.m.-Noon.

River Flow Yoga classes are offered on Thursdays, February 28 through March 21, 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Fee: $10 per class with four-class commitment or $15 drop in. Work clothes and comfortable attire welcome; bring a mat and blanket. To register, email vandalfsens.heather@mac.com or call 715-574-8787. Yoga @ the Woodson is part of a national initiative, Let’s Move! Museums & Gardens, launched by First Lady Michelle Obama and the Institute of Museum and Library Services to promote healthy choices and activities through interactive programs.

During Art Park Open Studio on the first Saturday of each month, 1-3 p.m., all ages drop in to try different art projects with provided materials; March 2, make handmade paper with the Museum’s mobile paper lab; April 6, create colorful animal scenes with paper in various shapes, patterns, and textures.

“Folding Paper” traces origami’s history, rooted in a rich Japanese and European tradition of paper folding, through its mid-twentieth-century rise from classroom craft to a sophisticated art form, and explores its modern-day influence on technology, design, and the global peace movement. The paper crane, origami’s most iconic form, has become a worldwide symbol of peace. Youngsters learn how to make a paper crane, discover the related story of Sadako Sasaki, and create an origami mobile to take home during Little Masters: Create Cranes, 5-7 years, Tuesday, March 19, 4:30-6 p.m., and Young Artists: Crane Dreams, 8-12 years, Thursday, March 21, 4:30-6 p.m. Call 715-845-7010 to register for these free programs.

Teens are invited to experiment with origami techniques and try patterns with origami enthusiasts Roger Zimmermann and Wausau West High School student Roman Baca during Teens Join the Fold, Friday, March 22, 6-8:30 p.m. Teens also fashion papier-mâché artworks during a fun-filled night that includes food and music.

All ages learn a variety of folded-paper forms during Origami Round Robin, Saturday, March 23, 1-3 p.m. Learn to fold a crane and add your creation to Art Park’s Flock to Fold community artwork.

During April’s Night Out @ the Woodson, adults learn about Charley Harper’s fanciful designs during Art History 101: Charley Harper’s Delights, Thursday, April 4, 5:30-6:30 p.m., from curator of collections Jane Weinke. During Hands-on Art: Scenes of Whimsy, that same night, 5:30-7 p.m., all ages select basic paper shapes in varied patterns, textures, and bold colors to create wildlife or nature scenes.

“Paper Cuts” artist residency funding comes from a Community Arts Grant from the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin, with funds from the Wisconsin Arts Board, Community Foundation, and the B.A. & Esther Greenheck Foundation. This project also is supported in part by a Challenge America Grant from the National Endowment of the Arts and a grant from Target.

“Paper Sculpture by Design” is drawn from the collection of Follett Library Resources, McHenry, Illinois. Follett Library Resources is a part of the Follett Corporation, a provider of products, services, and solutions to the educational marketplace.

“Folding Paper” was curated by Meher McArthur, and the tour was organized by the Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, and International Arts & Artists, Washington, D.C. The exhibition was generously supported by the E. Rhodes & Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.

January 26 – April 7, 2013

Folding Paper: The Infinite Possibilities of Origami

Rooted in a rich Japanese and European tradition of paper folding, origami rose in the mid-twentieth century to a sophisticated art form and exerted its modern influence on technology, math, science, design, and the global peace movement. The most famous of traditional origami forms – the crane – has become associated with long life and peace. “Folding Paper” features more than 100 works by forty artists from thirteen countries, was curated by Meher McArthur, and the tour was organized by the Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, and International Arts & Artists, Washington, D.C. The exhibition was generously supported by the E. Rhodes & Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.

January 26 – April 7, 2013

Calvin Nicholls: Paper Sculpture by Design

A Canadian paper sculptor who utilizes only X-ACTO knives, toothpicks dabbed in glue, and paper, Calvin Nicholls creates complex three-dimensional artwork from limited materials. Like origami, the works comprising “Paper Sculpture by Design” are strikingly elegant, which belies their complexity. Nicholls will work with students and lead public programs during his artist residency, March 5-9, 2013, at the Woodson Art Museum in Wausau, WI, celebrating the beauty and benefits of paper as an art form.

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Visit Extras

Audio Tours
Enriching audio tours on an iPod touch offer insights into selected changing exhibition artworks.
Activity Guides
All ages explore exhibitions via fun, interactive exercises in printed in-gallery activity guides.
In-gallery videos expand on exhibition themes.
Available for purchase.

Artist Residencies

See video of visiting artists.


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