The Sculpture of Ema Tanigaki

Folded Sheet Metal Sculpture

Jelly Form Vessel

3D abstract origami inspired folded copper mesh form, encapsulated in vitreous enamel. Coloration is achieved using a combination of the copper oxides combining with clear enamel and the judicial use of colored enamel. An intricate dance between time, heat and gravity.
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Title: Jelly form Vessel
Year created 2017
materials: folded copper mesh with glass enamel
dimensions :3.25" x 4.5" x 4.5"
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honorable mention Lewton-Brain Foldforming competition 2018

Blowing in Wind

This series of folded metal sculptures use curved folds. The precise curves are created using a Computer Aided Design software and fine grooves are machined into the sheet metal using a Computer Numerical Controlled spindle, however the final folding is done by hand
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The sheet metal curves allow for folding without any stretching or shrinking of the material. This allows for a form that can be folded and unfolded back into a flat sheet. This type of fold is termed a developable fold and is the basis for the handcraft of origami. The mathematical concept behind this design method is planar curved folding by reflection.
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Title: Blowing in Wind
Year created 2019
materials: folded copper with patina and walnut wood base
dimensions :17"x 17" x 8"

Balanced Blossom

It is particularly gratifying for Ema's folded works using origami concepts to be accepted into the realm of Public Art where it can be viewed in a non-commercial setting. Hopefully this will raise awareness of the process of folding in art and design. We hope more opportunities will arise that will allow us to help educate about the endless possibilities utilizing the theories that these works are based upon.
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Title: Balanced Blossom
Media: Copper Mesh and Copper tubing, bronze sheet metal
year created: 2018
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City of Albuquerque, Public Arts Collection
location yet to be determined

Modular Stainless Steel Lighting

In our minds there is no border between art and design. Presented here is one of Ema Tanigaki's light sculptures. This unit is a functional suspended light shade that is designed to attach to a SORAA SNAP system compatible lamp (light bulb).
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Title: Modular Lighting Series
Year Created: 2017
Media: Stainless Steel mesh functional lighting compatible with magnetic SNAP system

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left: three module light basket 1 + 2 + 4
dimensions: 15 inches height 18 inches diameter

This series will be available on our online store. Int he meantime contact us for the full series catalog.

A New Gateway

Commissioned Installation
part 2: wall top sculpture in progress
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Title:A New Gateway
Year Created: 2020
Media: Folded Perforated Stainless Steel Sheet functional gate

Grand Expectations

It is particularly gratifying for Ema's folded works using origami concepts to be accepted into the realm of Public Art where it can be viewed in a non-commercial setting. Hopefully this will raise awareness of the process of folding in art and design. We hope more opportunities will arise that will allow us to help educate about the endless possibilities utilizing the theories that these works are based upon.
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Title: Grand Expectations
Media: Folded copper sheet with bronze strip skeleton
year created: 2020
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City of Albuquerque, Public Arts Collection
location yet to be determined

Flames Blossom Vessel

The blossom vessels are a study of curved folding. These shapes were developed via trail and error using digitally hand drawn templates.
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Title: Blossom Vessel
Year Created: 2018
Media: Copper folded mesh with variable patina
Also available in bronze mesh.

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This series of copper vessels uses a chemical patina that varies depending on to temperature and duration. Each vessel has its own unique patterning and color. These vessels are available in three sizes.
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Photography that shows the color of each individual basket is not available due to the time it takes for high quality product photography. Please take time to see the units in person to see the full selection available.
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Currently the remaining pieces from this series are stranded in Japan. The were to be returned when the Sapporo Museum of Contemporary Art was closed due to the pandemic and they are not able to send the units back due to delays on international non-commercial air parcels by the US postal service.

Balanced Blossom

Simple straight folds can be used to create exotic forms. The nautilus forms use corrugation to create contour. This particular form (variation 2) is created using bronze material. The form is submerged in a patina solution, the thicker areas of mesh set at a different rate creating patterns of color in addition to the altering of the transmission of light through the mesh.
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Title: Nautilus Form Variations
Media: Folded Bronze Mesh with bronze sheet metal skeleton
year created: 2018

Three Blades

This modular form, three square pieces of sheet that interconnect to create a new form, is a pattern designed by Ema Tanigaki. It is a very minimalist variation of a traditional origami base.
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Title: Three Blade modular form
Media: Folded Bronze Mesh
year created: 2018
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Fire Bird

Simple folds in soft copper mesh encased in glass enamel create a new media of sculpture.
These works are have movement and flow in two meanings, they move in the heat of the kiln and develop colors as the copper dissolves into the clear glass.
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Title: Firebird
Media: Folded Copper mesh with glass enamel.
year created: 2018
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Dancer

Simple folds in soft copper mesh encased in glass enamel create a new media of sculpture.
These works are have movement and flow in two meanings, they move in the heat of the kiln and develop colors as the copper dissolves into the clear glass.
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Title: Dancer
Media: Folded Copper mesh with glass enamel.
year created: 2018
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Jelly Form Vessel
Blowing in Wind
Balanced Blossom
Modular Stainless Steel Lighting
A New Gateway
Grand Expectations
Flames Blossom Vessel
Balanced Blossom
Three Blades
Fire Bird
Dancer
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Bronze Welded Sculptural Basketry

Rebirth Basket

After years of sitting, sudden freedom allowed a transformation of work. Now hammering bronze sheet metal and welding; forming custom bronze wire and weaving: hot patinas were within reach.
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Title: Rebirth Basket
Year created 2004
materials: hammered and welded bronze sheet and tendril woven bronze. Ferric nitrate and silver nitrate patina
dimensions : 15" w x 25" h x 12 " d
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available for exhibition only

Second Harvest

Transparent patinas create a look of golden depth.
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Title:Second Harvest
Year created: 2004
materials: hammered and welded bronze sheet and tendril woven bronze. Ferric nitrate and cupric nitrate patina
dimensions : 13"w x 13d" x 11" h
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Second Harvest is was a commissioned work for a client based on the original work, A Quiet end to Summer.

Quiet End to Summer available for exhibition only.

Twisted Sisters

The Garlic Bulb form is one of my favorite shapes.
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Title: Twisted Sisters
materials: hammered and welded bronze sheet and tendril woven bronze. Ferric nitrate and bismuth nitrate patina, crochet gold plated stainless steel wire and glass spheres
year created: 2004
dimensions: 15" w x 16" d x 38" h

Summer Squash Suspended Basket

A bottom weighted base suspends conceptual fruit
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Title: Summer Squash Basket
Year Created: 2003
materials: hammered and welded bronze sheet and tendril woven bronze. Ferric nitrate patina
dimensions: 11" w x 7" d 15" h

First Born detail

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Title: First Born: detail
Year Created: 2003
materials: hammered and welded bronze sheet and tendril woven bronze. Ferric nitrate and bismuth nitrate patina
dimensions: 14" w x 14" d x 32" h

First Born detail

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Title: First Born: detail
Year Created: 2003
Media: Welded Bronze and bronze woven tendril wire hand crochet gold plated stainless steel with glass spheres
dimensions: 14" w x 14" d x 32" h

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Rebirth Basket
Second Harvest
Twisted Sisters
Summer Squash Suspended Basket
First Born detail
First Born detail
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next arrow