Nature-Inspired Paper Sculpture Artist by Tania Póo

Tania Póo in California has been working as a paper sculptor artist, most often creating natural life forms, for the past ten years. Her vibrant sculptures can't help but attract attention and are currently on display in a solo exhibit titled EXTRA+ORDINARY PAPER at the Gallery of the Consulate General of México in Los Ángeles. 


Note: For those with a fear of snakes, the post contains several reptile images.


vivid blue and orange handmade paper sculpture fish with feathery fins in front of paper coral

A native of Mexico City, Tania obtained an Architecture Degree at the Universidad Iberoamericana (IBERO) before emigrating to the U.S. She credits skills and meticulous work habits learned via model making during her studies as the reason she has been able to create such a diverse range of ocean and land creatures. 


biright blue fish with feathery, almost transparent fins

Raised by diving instructor parents and as the relative of a zoo worker, she was led early in life to a love of nature that provides her with limitless inspiration. 


vivid green and gold paper viper snake displayed on solid black background

Building each sculpture is a precise process that requires patience and many hours. She cuts, embosses, and layers individual scales and other body components over a framework and then applies paint, using a variety of techniques to bring the creature to life. She likes to add glossy varnish as a final step, not only to provide protection, but to give the look of a wet finish. 


decorative paper gold and white feathered serpent

A representation of Quetzalcoatl, a deity in Aztec culture, whose name comes from the Nahuatl language 

and means precious serpent or serpent feathered quetzal.


detail of gold and white paper serpent scales and feathers

Tania would like to find a way to make this vivid coral wreath available for a coral bleaching awareness campaign. She says that coral reefs are one of the most beautiful things she has ever seen and encourages us to use sunscreens that do not contain oxybenzone and octinoxate as a small way of helping the cause. 

handmade paper wreath decorated with a large number of corals of different vivid colors

This quote by Tania will surely resonate with paper lovers: “It seems to me that paper is undervalued. We consume it and dispose it with scandalous ease… but we have forgotten that behind its apparent simplicity, it hides the soul of nature.”


orange, black, and white paper striped clownfish displayed with sea corals, also made of paper


A Los Angeles Times article (translated from Spanish at the link) tells more about her work with paper, as well as the EXTRA+ORDINARY PAPER exhibit that has been extended and will continue through December 5. The Consulate General of México in Los Ángeles is located at 2401 W 6th Street, 90057.


invitation to exhibit of handmade paper art that shows detail of green and gold snake head and scales


This post on Instagram of photos taken at the opening show the wide range of sizes of Tania's paper sculptures. Some are quite enormous!

smiling woman stands next to elaborate handmade reptile at museum exhibit

Visit Tania Póo Art and stay up to date with her latest work via Instagram or Facebook.



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Ann Martin
Ann Martin

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