47-year-old Akira Nagaya, a self-taught artist in Japan, transformed common paper into amazingly exquisite paper artworks with his hands and a utility knife. Paper cutting is also called Kirie (切り絵) in Japanese. In his early 20s, Akira Nagaya was inspired by sasabaran, a technique of creating food decorations out of bamboo leaves, at a sushi shop about 30 years ago, the artist discovered his passion and began creating from then on. Akira Nagaya displayed his Kirie at his own restaurant, where these intricate creations were noticed by a local newspaper and they suggested to Akira Nagaya that he should exhibit his artworks in a gallery, “that was the first time I even considered what I had been doing as art,” said the artist.
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