By Leo Black via SWNS
An artist is trying to break into the exclusive fine art world with his exquisite - balloon animals.
Masayoshi Matsumoto, 52, has been creating intricate balloon animals since 2008 and uses no glue or tape to hold his creations together.
He uses a variety of techniques, such as layering deflated balloons on top of inflated ones, using deflated balloons to tie things together, and inflating balloons inside each other.
Masayoshi, originally a chemical engineer, wants to bring balloon art into the mainstream and take it to the same level of "high art."
The artist began making his pieces after he joined a juggling club, where he was exposed to circus skills, and also took inspiration from animal documentaries.
Masayoshi, from Hadano, Japan, spends hours on his pieces, with the quickest to complete taking two to three hours - and the longest around six.
He wears gloves coated in wax to avoid popping the incredibly fragile balloons
while making his pieces.
Incredibly, once Masayoshi had completed each creation, he photographs the pieces, and promptly pops them.
"My intention is to create high art," he said. "I chose balloons because I like their texture and soft presence. I also like how they deflate and droop quickly."
"It reminds me of the transience you feel in the art of flower arrangement.
"I choose motifs according to my mood at the time. I like living things, so I often choose living things as motifs.
"I would be happy if balloon art became more famous. I think that many people, including myself, should promote their work through the web and other means.
"Unfortunately, I don't think there will be a big increase in balloon artists."
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