Do you remember making your first paper airplane or paper crane? Although commonly known in Japan today as a childhood pastime, origami (折り紙) has evolved into a major medium for artistic expression, with leading artists transforming simple geometric shapes into awe-inspiring imaginative forms.
Soft, translucent, and durable, traditional Japanese paper, called washi (“wa” literally means Japanese and “shi” means paper) boasts a history of over 1300 years and is still very much a part of daily life in Japan. In fact, Washi was registered as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage in November of 2014. What makes this type of paper unique and loved both in Japan and around the world?