Origami Heaven

A paperfolding paradise

The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell

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Macromodular Sculptures
 
Macromodular sculptures are second generation modular designs built by combining complete modular assemblies into larger structures either with, or without, the use of joining or separating pieces.

My macromodular sculptures are intended to be partnership art, a concept that expresses the partnership that often exists in origami/paperfolding between the designer, who first conceptualises and defines the design, and the folder, who realises one expression of it at one particular point in time, so that both contribute in equal partnership to the finished work.

Many of these designs are explained in my book Building with Butterflies.

Larger pictures of many of these designs can be found in the Gallery of Macromodular Sculpture.

 
Towers
 
  Name: The Columbus Tower, also known as the Columbus Cubes or Tower of Columbus Cubes, is made by the simple expedient of stacking Columbus Cubes one on top of the other. Columbus Towers can be combined to form walls and forests.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Columbus Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1989.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN // On-line diagrams are available on the Modular Designs page of this site.

 
  Name: The Tower of Columbus Cuboids is made by stacking Columbus Cuboids one on top of the other. Towers of Columbus Cuboids can be combined to form walls and forests.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Columbus Cuboid is made from 6 modules folded from A4 or US Letter size sheets of paper using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 2015.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: The Crooked Tower is made by combining Paul Jackson Cubes and Robert Neale Octahedra alternately in a stack

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Paul Jackson Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Helterskelter - a macromodular sculpture made by stacking Gamma Antiprisms.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Gamma Antiprism is made from 8 squares using stahdard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1999.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: The Icarus Tower - a macromodular sculpture built from Icarus Cubes using joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Icarus Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each joining piece is folded from a one sixteenth size square using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1998.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: The Leaning Tower - a macromodular design made by combining Paul Jackson Cubes and Tricornes in a stack

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Paul Jackson Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each Tricorne is made from 3 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1998.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: The Octahedral Tower - a macromodular design made by stacking Robert Neale Octahedra with the aid of joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each joining piece is made from a square using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1998.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Treesnake - a macromodular design built from Diamond Prisms.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Diamond Prism is made from 8 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1998.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
Pyramids
 
  Name: Alpha Pyramids - a macromodular sculptures built from Alpha Prisms using joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Alpha Prism is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Columbus Cubes can be combined with separating pieces to produce the Columbus Pyramid shown here.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Columbus Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each joining piece is from a square using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Damocles - a macromodular design made by combining Alpha and Beta Prisms.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Alpha Prism and each Beta Prism is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Mothership - design made using Paulo Mulatinho's UFO as a macro-module - from squares.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each UFO is made from 2 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 2001.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Four Octahedra - four Robert Neale Octahedra linked with joining pieces from squares. Larger versions are possible. .

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each joining piece is from a square using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 2016. Update of work from 1995.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: The Octahedral Pyramid - single colour version - a macronodular design made using Robert Neale Octaahedra as macromodules and linked by joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1998.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Paul Jackson Cubes and Robert Neale Octahedra can also be combined to create a version of the Octahedral Pyramid that I call the Octacube Pyramid.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Paul Jackson Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: Slide is made by combining Columbus Cubes, Paul Jackson Cubes and Tricornes in a pyramidal form. The cubes and Tricorne's are linked together with joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Paul Jackson Cube and each Columbus Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each Tricorne is made from 3 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 2010.

Diagrams: In Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Temple of the Winds - a macromodular design made from triangular prisms and joining/supporting pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each prism is made from 2 squares using standard folding geometry. Each joining piece is made from a square using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 2014.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
Rings
 
  Name: The Ring of Cubes can either be made by glueing five Columbus Cubes together or by linking together five Ring of Cubes macromodules, which are provided with the necessary tabs and pockets to make this possible without nedding to use glue. The unmathematical geometry of the design was analysed in passing by Jeannine Mosely in an article in Origami3 - A K Peters Ltd - ISBN 1568811810 entitled 'The Validity of the Orb, An Origami Model'.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: 30 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1990 (both versions).

Diagrams for the pure origami version can be found in Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Ring of Elites - 5 Elites linked by joining pieces. A ball of 20 Elites is also possible.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules from silver rectangles.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1993.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: Ring of Elite 2s - 5 Elite 2s linked by joining pieces. A ball of 20 Elite 2s is also possible.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules from silver rectangles.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1993.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: Stargate - 5 Artifacts linked by joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules from silver rectangles.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1995.

Diagrams: In Complete Origami - Collins and Brown - David Mitchell - ISBN 978-1-84340-397-5

 
Balls
 
  Name: The Ring of Cubes design can be extended, using either method, to create a Ball of Cubes. Further macromodules can be added to produce more complex forms.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: 120 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1990 (both versions).

Diagrams for the pure origami version can be found in Building with Butterflies - David Mitchell - Water Trade - ISBN 978-0-9534774-7-0.

 
  Name: Nexus - 20 Artifacts linked by joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules from silver rectangles.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1995.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
Lattices
 
  Name: The Octacube is made by combining eight Paul Jackson Cubes and six Robert Neale Octahedra. Larger versions can be constructed by adding more macromodules.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: Each Paul Jackson Cube is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry. Each Robert Neale Octahedron is made from 6 modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1997.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: Borromean Lattice - lattice made by combining Borromean Links designs using simple joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules from squares using standard folding geometry.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1999.

Diagrams: Not yet available.

 
  Name: The Elite Hypercube - made by combining 20 Elite or Elite2 macro-modules using joining pieces.

Modules / Paper shape / Folding geometry: All modules and joining pieces folded from silver rectangles.

Designer / Date: David Mitchell, 1991.

Diagrams: On-line diagrams for the Elite version are available on the Modular Designs page of this site. Diagrams for the Elite 2 version are not yet available.