Masayo Fukuda is a real master when it comes to the Japanese art of papercutting, known as Kirie. For the last 30 years or so she has explored the limits of papercutting and finetuned her work, crafting delicate pieces of art, cut by hand and using a single sheet of paper at a time.
Like most creatives, Fukuda’s love of art sparked early on, and as a child, she would spend many hours drawing and painting. “Ever since I was small, I liked to move my fingers, and I loved drawing and manga (Japanese comic books),” she shared with X-Ray Magazine. “I imitated manga characters and drew original characters by myself.”
Her first encounter with papercutting was at highschool. “When giving a birthday card to my friend, I felt that it was unsatisfactory to send just a square card,” she shared. “So, I cut the paper into a heart shape. After that, when giving greeting cards to family members and friends, I discovered that it was not so easy to cut their cards and present them with motifs such as flower bouquets and girls’ profiles.”
Her early interest in papercutting has grown since to a full-blown obsession. And with more than 42 thousand followers on Instagram, there’s no slowing down for Fukuda.
Focused mainly on animals, with a special interest in marine life and underwater creatures, her artwork has been featured in galleries around Japan and elsewhere. “I have liked creepy and mysterious creatures as well as marine life from an early age,” she explains. “Among them, I especially liked deep-sea fish and jellyfish, and made them motifs in my work.”
Take a look at some of her mesmerizing creations.