Wait until you hit the 0:25 second mark!
Li Hongbo, a Chinese artist based in Beijing, makes paper sculptures that bend the mind and turn objects into games.
To make his sculptures, Li uses a stencil to paste glue in narrow strips across large pieces of paper that he then sticks together to form blocks of 500. He stacks the blocks to the desired height (an average bust is over ten blocks or 5,000 sheets of paper high), then cuts, chisels and sands the large block just as if it were a piece of soft stone.
Li says: “At the beginning, I discovered the flexible nature of paper through Chinese paper toys and paper lanterns.” Inspired by the idea of tradition that paper embodies, Li creates a hidden element of surprise in his paper sculptures that stretch in infinitely many ways.
In his recent works, Li has consciously produced perfect replicas of classical busts. The denatured human forms makes some people squirm. “People have a fixed understanding of what a human is, and think that a human cannot be physically manipulated, so when you transform a person, people will reconsider the nature of objects and the motivation behind the creation. This is what I care about,” Li said.
At his exhibits, gallery assistants pull the twenty pieces around on their plinths for visitors, but not being allowed to touch pieces themselves leaves some feeling unfulfilled. Li is aware of this irony, and at a show in Sydney provided small models for the audience to play with.