Tuesday, 30 October 2012

uncanny spaces – horrorgami

The kirigami horror houses of Marc Hagan-Guirey, otherwise known as Paper Dandy, have gone viral over the past few days, even prompting a BBC news video. It's not a surprise, given that his tributes to 13 famous houses of horror films – including The Shining, The Amityville Horror, The Addams Family and Beetlejuice – are a singular vision of spookiness, each carefully cut from single sheets of paper, then presented as silhouettes in lightboxes. Traditionally, the haunted house upends our ideas of livable spaces, upsetting our ideas of home as a place of safety and comfort and, certainly in cinema, they upset our sense of perspective, both psychological and literal. Here, those ideas are magnified by presenting the haunted house in an unnatural three-dimensional form, and then shrunk. Although small and fragile enough to crush in one hand, they have, like their cinematic reflections, driven out the inhabitants. Here also, the lit-up houses are not even haunted by a presence; it is the houses themselves that haunt us, luring us into the nightmare of being trapped in the demonic dolls house. They're so cute, it's terrifying.

Horrorgami, Gallery One And A Half, 1 1/2 Ardleigh Road, London, N1, 1-14 Nov

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