In the hands of artist Yuken Teruya, old newspapers sprout tiny plants and high-end shopping bags hold the night sky. On view at Josée Bienvenu Gallery in New York, each ordinary object is transformed using only an X-Acto knife, a few folds, and an extraordinary vision for what a piece of paper can do.
Beyond the unbelievable realism, each piece feels like a complex mathematical puzzle. The tiny paper sculptures are never fully cut from their source, leaving the original object fully intact with a complex network of holes that play their own aesthetic role.
Within the nine newspapers on view, collectively titled “Minding My Own Business”, there is often a complex conversation between the image and the tiny plants growing from it. In the piece pictured above, for example, a rape victim is pictured hiding her face. The upright flowers shelter her while the white empty cutouts give her a saint-like glow.