The delightful paper puppets by Haruki Nakamura, as you can see from the GIFs below, certainly trumps all the fancy, battery-operated toys kids have at their disposal today. Using the kirigami technique, an ancient art of adding cuts and folds to paper, Nakamura creates paper creatures that react to human touch much like karakuri — traditional mechanized puppets, or automata, as we previously covered here.

By prodding, squeezing or pressing the figures, Nakamura’s paper dolls lift masks to reveal their faces, or spring into the air and transform into balls upon landing. Whimsical and ingenious, it goes to show that despite all the technology we’re surrounded with, the simplest things can still awe the hell out of us.

Nakamura’s dolls can be purchased online, although you’d need a Japan address to receive them.

 Haruki Nakamura

H/T, images via MyModernMet, Imgur