Origami: Art or Science

“OrIgami Engineering is a thing?

– JOshua Suber (ME)

This semester I had the opportunity to join and participating in the Origami Club at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Each Friday, students from all majors, come together and attempt a variety of origami challenges. Our faculty advisor, Glaucio H. Paulino, teaches CEE 4803 Origami Engineering, and would often give insight on various real-world applications of origami. The Origami Engineering course introduces students to the history, art, and applications of origami, and attracts students from every major, much like the club.

What is origami?

“Origami has shown To be one of the most natural and effective techniques to teach math?

– Professor Paulino

Modern origami is characterized by “open access patterns and sequences” created by a diverse background of individuals. Many origami techniques are even copyrighted and considered intellectual property.

Although many view Origami as an artful past time, our modern understanding of the craft as evolved past mere paper folding. Our knowledge of origami basis in geometry and mathematics has allowed many researchers to find new and unique applications within complex mechanical and programmable materials. Origami has become the solution to many technological problems. It is truly amazing, when a craft can serve as both a calming afternoon activity, and the foundation to an evolving technological approach.

Origami Rose


Origami Engineering?

Much of the recent development in origami research is supported by Professor Pualino. While serving as a program director for the National Science Foundation he introduced the idea of origami engineering as a topic for the NSF’s Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation. Professor Paulino’s research focuses on the advancements of material science with the goal to create a positive influence in the world.

A great example of origami in practice is the Miura-Ori structure. The Miura-Ori is one of the most famous patterns in origami engineering, and is one of the technique Professor Paulino introduced to Origami Club members. It is a compact tube structure that is easily able to transported, combined, and layered. It helps demonstrate many of the key components of origami, while also being easy to fold.

Professor Paulino, along with Tomohiro Tachi and Evgueni Filipov, have even developed a unique new origami tube structure based on the Miura-Ori pattern.


I’ve learned so much during my short time at orgami club, and I wanted to share it with you! Hopefully you see the art of origami is a extremely versatile medium. I’m passionate about the intersections of art andtechnology, and the innovations this combination can bring to the world. This also proves there there is always something in STEM that you can find that could interest you!

Origami Club group picture.



(n.d.). Retrieved from https://engineering.nd.edu/spotlights/1BusEng1st20004000TurnerApplicationPackageComplete.pdf

BETWEEN THE FOLDS | History of Origami | Independent Lens. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.pbs.org/independentlens/between-the-folds/history.html

Purby , T. (n.d.). The Class, The Art, The Future .


Joshua Suber
4th Year Computational Media Major (also minoring in Industrial Design) at the Georgia Institute of Technology. In my free time, I like drawing, animation, and playing soccer.