See a Tiny City of 635 Architecture Models — Crafted Entirely from Paper

Charles Young’s year-long project goes beyond the traditional challenge of exploring design, architecture and model-building, culminating in true art.

Sydney Franklin Sydney Franklin

Architectural modeling is an arduous process. Long hours are spent piecing together the precise measurements for a project. What if this had to be done every day — consistently — for a year?

Edinburgh-based artist Charles Young took on a 365-day creative project to manifest a tiny paper-model city that makes foam-rolling large-scale construction look easy. Using thin, 200gsm watercolor paper and PVA glue, he designed and constructed one new object each day starting in August 2014. After one year, he’d created the small island of Paperholm.

Video via Sony Action | Cam

But he didn’t stop there. As of November 2016, Young had added 270 more buildings to his makeshift metropolis for a total of 635, creating five new islands in the process — an archipelago similar to Venice.

Image via Colossal

During his year-long project, Young also incorporated moving components into some of his structures that he photographed to create quick animations for his Tumblr. These bite-size models are brought to life on camera in a playful and quirky manner.

GIFs via Colossal

The breadth of work and time it must have taken to fabricate these ideas is overwhelming. Every day a new typology brings with it new problems to solve and new design intricacies to be learned. Three hundred and sixty-five–day creative projects are daunting enough. Paperholm goes beyond the traditional challenge of exploring design, architecture and model-building, culminating in true art. Young’s idiosyncratic talent is undeniable.

Image via designboom

A version of Young’s cityscape was on display as part of the Unfolding Pavilion at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia in May 2016. His work was more recently shown at the NEoN Digital Arts Festival last November in Dundee, Scotland.

The project is supported by New Media Scotland’s Alt-W Fund with investment from Creative Scotland.

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