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Wild (folded paper) animals on the loose in Botanical Garden

HUNTSVILLE — Art and nature merge into one exciting experience at Huntsville Botanical Garden with the “Origami in the Garden” exhibition. 

Created by Santa Fe artists Jennifer and Kevin Box, 18 pieces from the collection of larger-than-life sculptures inspired by the ancient Japanese art of origami will temporarily call the Garden ‘home’ through Aug. 27.

Box has taken origami, which means “folding paper” in Japanese, in a new direction. After years of experimentation, he developed a technique that led to severalcastings of paper into bronze.

“This exhibit is a perfect fit for Huntsville Botanical Garden,” said CEO Sue Wagner. “Paper is made from plants, origami is made from paper, and the origami sculptures that will be displayed in the Garden reflect elements of the natural world. It’s a beautiful melding of subject and setting.”

(Huntsville Botanical Garden contributed)

The Boxes collaborated with origami masters Te Jui Fu, Robert J. Lang, Beth Johnson and Michael LaFosse to create designs that eventually became statues of museum-quality metals dotting the Garden’s landscape and adorning the atrium.

The highlight is “Master Peace,” a 25-foot-tall sculpture of hundreds of origami peace cranes towering over the Aquatic Garden.

Kevin Box said seeing the sculptures amid the natural beauty in the garden makes it more of an immersive experience than one would get while viewing them in a museum with hushed whispers and recycled air.

“I think that there’s nothing more enchanting than experiencing art in the outdoor environment,” he said. “Botanical gardens are museums for plants. It’s just the perfect setting.”

Origami in the Garden is included in the regular admission.

“We are so grateful for the support from PNC Bank that helped bring this delightful yet sophisticated exhibit to our community,” said Wagner. “We feel confident that people who come see this exhibit will leave with a sense of inspiration.”

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