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Chris Palmer’s Polypouches

I’ll be perfectly honest: I never understood what Chris Palmer was doing with his “PolyPouches”. I had tried going to his website a few times to find out information about his work (no luck there!) but all I found were these things he was calling PolyPouches, and it asked me to buy a subscription to find out more.

I just shrugged it off at the time, having no idea what they were thus not a lot of interest. However, the other day I came across this site which features photos from an Origami USA convention in 2001.

And by looking at this wide array of them, I figured it out- they are the shapes that are formed at pleat intersections; the kind that those of us just getting started in tessellations are discovering as we go along. He’s already mastered all of this, of course, but for us it’s new.

Once I realized that was what these were, it really opened my eyes to some of the possibilities inherent in 3d pleat junctures and just how many things are possible. It’s like he was making a catalogue of them for his own reference and decided that other people might find them interesting as well. I wish I knew more about them, but I don’t think that will happen.

Anyway, if you have folded tessellations with non-flat-folding pleat intersections (Melisande, Fredrik, Jane, etc) you might recognize some of them here. Take a look at some of the other ones as well, and notice what other possibilities are in store for all of us as we continue folding…

So I owe an apology to Chris for thinking these polypouches were not related to his previous tessellation work, as they certainly are! I wish I had more insight into his works and his design methodologies, without having to reinvent the wheel here; but I do respect his decision to keep his art (and income source) a private thing. It’s his choice, after all.

Thank you, Chris, for creating these works and giving us a glimpse of what must be a fascinating world of mathematical art you live in!

If you have issues with the images not working (the geocities host that the images are on is very bandwidth-limited) let me know and I will post alternate links to the images locally.

3 Comments

  1. Administrator says

    I’ve used the wayback archive to look at his older work, too- I’m guessing since he hasn’t asked them to remove it, that he doesn’t mind. Either way it’s a publicly available resource, so to a certain extent what’s there is there.

    Thanks for the link, though, I had forgotten about that! Much appreciated.

    -Eric

  2. Joel Cooper (origami joel) says

    Thanks for that link. This is one of those sites that got me started on this tessellation kick all those years ago. I must admit, I’d poached ideas from that site all the time starting out, and I can’t blame him for keeping them under wraps these days. It’s his bread and butter, after all.
    But I’d still like to know how he does all that work in silk.

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