We all have heard about engineers accomplishing great feats by constructing marvellous gadgets and structures. But, have you ever heard of an engineer whose only construction material is paper? Hard to believe!
Meet Benja Harney, an Australian designer, labels himself as a Paper Engineer. So intricate and complex are his classy creative designs using only paper and glue that he has achieved world recognition.
However, he is not the only one to make the paper a medium of creative expression. Remember, Felix Semper? His creative use of stretchable paper makes his paper sculptures look like stone busts.
Harney’s fresh and original creations bring to life whatever he creates from his studio, aptly named Paperform. Little wonder he is much in demand by brands, shops, art galleries and connoisseurs of paper art.
Being a pioneer in this field, his decade-long experience has enabled him to push the boundaries of creativity in the paper medium. He is not only a professional creative artist but an educator too. His creations comprise animation, illustrations, paper sculptures, pop-up books, packaging, installations, fine art, fashion, set design and what have you.
Harney is no armchair creator, but a force multiplier for anyone who solicits his services. Take for instance Australia Post, this cardboard firm wanted to promote their Mighty Small campaign and took Harney’s help. Harney created a couple of awesome cardboard structures as part of the campaign that was freighted to the location, where the photoshoot took place.
One of his contributions was Pharrell’s ‘Supercolor’ collaboration with Adidas, in which 50 limited-edition Superstar sneakers were released. Adidas commissioned five leading Australian artists, including Harney, to interpret a colour from the range. Harney created a lobster that was blue in colour. Some lobsters do acquire this colour due to a rare genetic mutation that happens once in every two million years. Harney labelled it the superstar of the crustacean world!
The refreshing ways in which Harney creates is both awe-inspiring and educative. Goes to show for a creative mind material is really immaterial for it has the ability to create from any available material.
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