Artist Talk: "The Amazing World of Colette Fu: Pop-Up Book Engineer"

Colette Fu received her M.F.A. in fine art photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2003, and soon after began devising complex compositions that incorporate photography and pop-up paper engineering. She has designed for award-winning stop motion animation commercials and free-lanced for clients including Vogue China, Canon Asia, Moët Hennessy–Louis Vuitton, and the Delaware Disaster Research Center. Her pop-up books are included in the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Library of Congress, Metropolitan Museum of Art, the West Collection, and many private and rare archive collections. In 2014, Fu attended a 6-month artist residency at the Swatch Art Peace Hotel in Shanghai, where she continued her We are Tiger Dragon project, an extensive visual exploration of China’s ethnic minorities. There she also designed China’s largest (single-spread) pop-up book, measuring 2.5 x 5 x 1.7 meters high.

In her own words: “Pop-up and flap books originally illustrated ideas about astronomy, fortune telling, navigation, anatomy of the body, and other scientific principles. This history prompted me to construct my own books reflecting ideas on how our selves relate to society today. My pop-ups are a way for me to speak and inform; the real and implied motion in the pop-ups link to a temporal element and an inevitable corollary is to awe and unsettle. Constructing pop-ups allows me to combine intuitive design and technical acuity with my love of traveling as I try to understand the world around me. With pop-up books I want to eliminate the boundaries between people, book, installation, photography, craft, sculpture.”


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