Straw Dinos, Snakes, and Insects Amaze at Wara Art Festival

This Japanese artist takes “straw art” to an entirely new level.

Every year, the Niigata Prefecture in Japan holds a very special harvest festival every 31st of August. the “Wara” festival, or rice-straw festival, encourages local artists to set their hand to turning humble straw into gargantuan works of art. All it takes is a wooden frame, a hundred or so bushels of straw, a team of helping hands, and a vivid imagination to bring these creations to life.




Amy Goda, a local artist, has made a name for herself creating these larger-than-life sculptures. She has kept the tradition alive ever since 2013, and has placed the Wara Festival on the map to the wonder and delight of people online. Employing different techniques from construction methods for thatched cottages to coiling, basketweaving, braiding, her works of art are an amazement to behold, whether from afar, or up-close.


The Triceratops as a work-in-progress. Teams of volunteers band together to bring the beast to life.


The sculptures, which can stand up to 16 feet tall, are so structurally sound, they make it possible for visitors to interact with them, from anything to posing underneath them to standing atop them as fun photo opportunities without any fear of accidents or injuries. Some straw sculptures even float on water as a clever variation, such as one not-so-little duckling.



Visitors were keen to share their experience with the straw behemoths on Twitter.

If you have a mind to view them for yourself, these gentle straw giants will be on display at the Uwasekigata Park in Niigata City’s Nishikan Ward, where they will remain until the beginning of November.

[Image sources: 1, 2]

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