Indian artist duo Deepti Nair and Harikrishnan Panicker, known collectively as Hari & Deepti, create magical sceneries that are made of paper, light, and shadows.
They started experimenting with paper cut shadow boxes in 2010 with hand painted watercolor paper which was then cut and assembled in a wooden box to create a diorama. They later on added lights and simplified their pieces by losing the colored aspect of the paper. They have since then evolved to add their own style of paper cut art incorporating back-lit light boxes using flexible LED strip lights.
“What amazes us about the paper cut light boxes is the dichotomy of the piece in its lit and unlit state, the contrast is so stark that it has this mystical effect on the viewers,” they write in their website.
Indeed, the dichotomy between the unlit boxes and the lit version is striking, bringing to life their intricate scenes that evoke the viewers’ imaginations. Drawn towards the imaginative aspect of storytelling, the duo believes that paper is a great medium to reflect the many shades and depths a good story contains.
“Paper is brutal in its simplicity as a medium,” they write. “It demands the attention of the artist while it provides the softness they need to mold it in to something beautiful. It is playful, light, colorless and colorful. It is minimal and intricate. It reflects light, creates depth and illusions in a way that it takes the artist through a journey with limitless possibilities.”
Take a look at their magical worlds in the gallery below.