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Radical Objects: Origami and the Anti-Nuclear Movement

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Take a perfectly square piece of paper. Fold it in half along a vertical axis. Open it out. Now fold it in half along a horizontal axis. Open it out again. Fold the paper diagonally from corner to corner to form a triangle. Fold this triangle in half to form an equilateral triangle. On each fold, run your fingernails along the fold-line to impress the line deeply on the paper. Take one corner, open out the triangle and fold it to form a square…

    If one wanted to teach someone how to fold origami with words alone it would be well-nigh impossible. It is a skill which can only be learned by observing someone else do it and by going through the motions with one’s own hands. This learned skill has been transmitted from individual to individual and has gradually spread around the world.

    Here is a pamphlet produced by the anti-nuclear organisation, ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons). The flat orange background and white slogan ‘Ban Nuclear Weapons Now’ contrast with the blue, three-dimensional origami crane attached to the pamphlet. In the lower left of the front page the ICAN logo also appears – an adaptation of the peace symbol used by nuclear disarmament groups, modified with the addition of a broken nuclear missile.

Publication Date


  • 2015

Citation


  • Mackie, V. C. (2015). Radical Objects: Origami and the Anti-Nuclear Movement. History Workshop Online, 03 August

Volume


  • 03 August

Place Of Publication


  • http://www.historyworkshop.org.uk/radical-objects-origami-and-the-anti-nuclear-movement/

Abstract


  • Take a perfectly square piece of paper. Fold it in half along a vertical axis. Open it out. Now fold it in half along a horizontal axis. Open it out again. Fold the paper diagonally from corner to corner to form a triangle. Fold this triangle in half to form an equilateral triangle. On each fold, run your fingernails along the fold-line to impress the line deeply on the paper. Take one corner, open out the triangle and fold it to form a square…

    If one wanted to teach someone how to fold origami with words alone it would be well-nigh impossible. It is a skill which can only be learned by observing someone else do it and by going through the motions with one’s own hands. This learned skill has been transmitted from individual to individual and has gradually spread around the world.

    Here is a pamphlet produced by the anti-nuclear organisation, ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons). The flat orange background and white slogan ‘Ban Nuclear Weapons Now’ contrast with the blue, three-dimensional origami crane attached to the pamphlet. In the lower left of the front page the ICAN logo also appears – an adaptation of the peace symbol used by nuclear disarmament groups, modified with the addition of a broken nuclear missile.

Publication Date


  • 2015

Citation


  • Mackie, V. C. (2015). Radical Objects: Origami and the Anti-Nuclear Movement. History Workshop Online, 03 August

Volume


  • 03 August

Place Of Publication


  • http://www.historyworkshop.org.uk/radical-objects-origami-and-the-anti-nuclear-movement/