Awesome Origami in New York City

During the last weekend of June this year, in New York City, more than six hundred and fifty origami lovers met for four days of learning, teaching, exhibiting and sharing in all aspects of origami. At origami conventions there is usually a bit of everything and enough of it to please those who love origami and those who admire the art of folding paper.

Coinciding with the convention, there was a fantastic origami show in view at The Cooper Union (More about it below).

This year’s 2014 OrigamiUSA convention met all expectations. There was representational origami, abstract origami, practical origami, simple origami, complex origami, miniature origami and giant origami. The floral arrangement shown in the photo above, made by John Blackman, is a gorgeous example of the origami models shown at the convention exhibition.

Exchanging ideas, folding paper, and having conversations with old and new friends is something I look forward to. Thank you to all those who expressed your love and appreciation for the work shared here at Origami Spirit.

What I learned


1. Sparrow Songbird (S. Stemberg) :: 2. Sakura (T. Tatsumi) :: 3. Basket (M. Miyamoko) 
4. Dogwood Flower (Unknown) :: 5.Inflatable cat (O. Esteve) :: 6. Anemone (S. Fujimoto)
7. Cross (M. Green) :: 8. Four-piece modular  (Unknown) :: 9. Frog (B. Johnson)

Thank you Talo Kawasaki, Kathy Hammell, Mariko Miyamoko, Susan Wettling, Kathleen Sheridan, Janet Jelle, Matthew Green, Char Morrow and Donna Walcavage for your perfect demonstrations on how to make these figures.

What I taught


Horses have been a popular theme for this Year of the Horse. My idea for making a carrousel came to me from combining the lovely origami horses of José Tomás Buitrago with a super spinner created by David Donahue. I added my own base and the Carousel came to life!


The carousel class that I taught at the convention sold out. With a room full of twenty terrific students it was a success and we had a lot of fun!

Origami Pin Exchange


The pin exchange has become a tradition at origami conventions. It is a delight to see what models people choose for making their pins, and the creative ways in which these pins are presented. Shrikant Iyer does a terrific job in organizing and coordinating it. The photo above shows most of the pins that were exchanged at this year’s Origami USA event.

Origami Fish -pins

This photo  shows the set of origami fish pins I made using black-and-white patterned paper.
(Origami fish tutorial HERE)

Large-size Origami Competition


Organized and hosted by Sok Song. Convention participants love this fun-filled activity!  For more pictures of the origami convention, visit our Facebook Gallery.

Surface to Structure

Parallel to the Origami USA convention, the Surface to Structure exhibition  at The Cooper Union, was the cream of the cake! This exhibit brought together the work of 88 artists from five continents and marked the 55th anniversary of the very first origami exhibition held in the United States, also at Cooper Union.

What a treat this origami show was! Here is a photo album featuring 36 of the pieces shown at Surface to Structure.

Click an image to enlarge in Lightbox mode.

15 thoughts on “Awesome Origami in New York City”

  1. Hola Leyla. Me gustaría hacer el carrusel. ¿Dónde se encuentra el diseño para el spinner de David Donahue? Muchas gracias.

  2. It’s my 1st comments not only on origami but althrough everything. I love folding something rather than lying a piece of paper joblessly, but I like your way of folding and teaching.

    Though I can’t fold more than very few of basic origami. Thanks.

  3. WAUW…it seems that you have had a great Origami-weekend Leyla.
    Just had a look at the face-book photo’s, just wonderful those giant folded pieces.
    I got some new ‘pin’ ideas for next years origami-weekend in the Netherlands ;o)
    Thank you for sharing it all.

  4. Thank you for sharing your wonderful time in New York! You must have been so inspired by all of the beautiful work and I know they were inspired by yours too! It’s beautiful how this gentle craft is shared by so many around the world.

  5. Beautiful and neat presentation, indeed. And here to say hello to Rosemary, you should and WILL come one day!

  6. WOW! What a beautiful presentation of models and experiences. It is like inspirational eye candy. Origami Heaven to be sure. I particularly like the B&W photo of you teaching the little girl. Thank you for sharing your experiences at OUSA 2014 Convention, Leyla; as always, done with impeccable style. One day … I will join you :-)

    Best wishes always,


  7. What gorgeous pieces! I would have loved to be able to go. The OUSA I might go sooner or later, but Surface to Surface was a once in a lifetime event. Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos with the world.


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