VMFA TAke And MAke
Celebrate the Ar t of Japan: Origami Animal
Origami (Japanese words oru meaning folding and kami meaning paper) is the traditional Japanese art
of paper folding. Japanese origami dates back to the 17th century and has been widely used in Japanese
culture. For example, in some Japanese wedding celebrations, origami butterflies represent the bride and
groom, and Samurai warriors adorned gifts with good-luck tokens made of folded strips of paper. Origami
is made by making a series of “mountain” and “valley” folds on a single square piece of paper to create a
sculptural or three-dimensional form. A work constructed by cutting, gluing, or taping is not considered
origami. Practice your folding skills by making your own pet pal.
1. Using scissors cut out the large square below.
2. Fold your paper in half along the dotted line to create the shape of a triangle.
3. With point “a” of the triangle facing you, fold toward you along the solid lines downward to make
the ears. The middle diamond shape is the new face.
4. Using markers, colored pencils, or cut paper, make a face for your new friend!
it’s your art.
v i r g i n i a m u s e u m o f f i n e a r t s
2 0 0 n . b o u l e v a r d
w w w. v m fa . m u s e u m