Callison Architect Tina Hovsepian's Cardboard Shelter Exhibited at Berkshire Museum

Cardborigami Receives $10,000 Annenberg Foundation Grant

Global architecture firm Callison is pleased to announce that Cardborigami, a temporary reusable shelter made of folded cardboard designed by Tina Hovsepian, an associate in the firm’s Los Angeles office, is included in the Berkshire Museum’s latest exhibition, PaperWorks:  The Art and Science of an Extraordinary Material. PaperWorks opened June 15th and continues through October 2013.

Origami, the ancient Japanese art of paper folding, inspired the design—and the name—of the shelter Ms. Hovsepian devised initially to help the homeless population in Los Angeles. She was in her fourth year at the USC School of Architecture when she made her first prototype. Ms. Hovsepian chose standard cardboard because of its structural qualities and its natural insulation.

“While researching the uses people have devised for paper, I have been repeatedly amazed at how inquiring minds have so deftly taken advantage of paper’s versatility,” noted Mira Mingalone, Director of Interpretation and PaperWorks curator for the Berkshire Museum. “Among them are architectural applications such as the paper emergency shelter designed by Tina Hovsepian. Tina made use of age-old paper folding techniques along with paper’s best properties of strength and affordability and applied them in her Cardborigami shelter to solve some very real issues we face as a society.”

Cardborigami provides compact, portable protection from the elements and can be opened or closed in under a minute. Ms. Hovsepian recently received a $10,000 grant from the Annenberg Foundation to support production of Cardborigami and has set up a non-profit organization by the same name to fight homelessness.

“What makes Tina a remarkable young designer is her ability to push boundaries, such as shepherding an idea for a school project into a full-fledged non-profit organization,” said Bill Lacey, Callison Chief Design Officer and Principal in the Los Angeles office. “We are delighted to see Cardborigami featured in the Berkshire Museum’s PaperWorks exhibit.”

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Tracy Schneider