Golden Venture Folding

origami swan

Golden Venture Folding (also called Chinese Paper Folding or 3D Origami) is a type of modular origami. Here, paper is folded into a simple triangular unit. Hundreds of these units are inserted into one another to create elaborate sculptures. The number of units needed depend on the level of complexity and the size of the model. Typically it would take 250 to 500 units to make a swan or a pineapple.
[Photo: traditional swan by L Surber].

origami pineapple

Chinese paper folding was probably invented in China. The art form was popularized in 1993 when a ship called the Golden Venture brought illegal Chinese immigrants into USA. While the Chinese refugees applied for political asylum, they were put in prison. To pass their time, the Chinese prisoners folded and assembled paper models. Some of the models were given as gifts to those who helped their cause. Some models were displayed in a traveling exhibit. In 2006, a movie was made depicting the conditions the illegal immigrants endured.
[Photo: traditional pineapple by A Mak].


There are very few diagrams for these types of models because, given enough units, you can make almost anything!

More about Chinese Paper Folding

origami chair

Books about Golden Venture Folding

  • 3D Origami: Step by Step Illustrations by Boutique-Sha (book review)
  • More and More 3D Origami by Mieko Baba, Ikuko Mitsuoka, Yasuaki Okada, and Yoko Ishiguro
  • More 3D Origami: Step-By-Step Illustrations by Joie Staff
  • click here to see books in: USA, Canada, UK, Germany

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