By Yoshihide Momotani
For complicated origami fanatics.
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Extra info for Origami Alpine Flowers (Yama no Hana Origami) (in Japanese)
It is an almost pointless exercise to add that such a feat could only be realized through the change of the representational paradigm introduced by the Renaissance, which submitted every image as a specular reflection, as an extension of reality. In the light of this, we might also have expected Alberti's treatise on new painting to contain - within the concept of the image as a mirror of the real - the entire theory of this new art of projecting shadows, as illustrated by Masaccio's fresco. However, this expectation is not fully realized since Alberti is much more concerned with the relationship between light and colour than with the creation of cast shadows.??
The bottle of aftershave (whose name appears twice in the image as though truly and accurately duplicated) is a desirable object in as much as the 'the reflection' presents it as having more consistency than the shadow and more reality than the mirror: in other words, it is presented as being 'the same'. It is an almost pointless exercise to recall that such a manipulation is only possible within a culture that, on the one hand, turns manufactured goods into fetishes and, on the other, details its own visual mechanisms from the time of that great invention - the photographic image.
This outcome is in keeping with his new conception on art, which Vasari defined as follows: [Masaccio] reflected that, as painting is nothing more than an imitation of all natural living things, with similar design and colouring, so he who should follow Nature most closely would come nearest to perfection. [... he] introduced movement, vigour and life into the attitudes, giving the figures a certain appropriate and natural relief that no painter had ever succeeded in obtaining before. . His works possess harmony and sweetness, the flesh-colour of the heads and of his nudes blending with the tints of draperies, which he delighted to make in a few easy folds, with perfect nature and grace.