Student Makes Iron Man Costume Entirely From Cardboard

Ralphie Aversa

Kai-Xiang Xhong takes ordinary cardboard boxes and turns them into extraordinary pieces of art. The 20-year-old's latest work is a full sculpture of Tony Stark's Iron Man suit, and you would be hard-pressed to find words that can do it justice.

Xhong is a student in Taiwan and began turning sketches into sculptures when he was in high school.

"I have since produced lots of artwork with cardboard," Xhong told the Stan Winston School of Character Arts. "For example, Optimus Prime from TRANSFORMERS, skeletons of the T-Rex and a Pterodactyl, an IRON MAN suit, and so on. And the last three of them were all made full-size."


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The detail in the costume is incredible. Xhong painstakingly carved out nearly every notch and indent in the "armor," along with creating the hinges and joints throughout the life-size suit.

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"For my cardboard IRON MAN SUIT, I used pepakura technique," he explained, referencing a method that uses buildable and foldable 3D models. "But I did not add any special color on the surface. Keeping the cardboard color and texture was deliberate. That's my style."

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It took the Taiwanese student almost a year to complete the project, as he worked on it only in his free time. Xhong's art is now receiving international recognition.

"Creating is the most important part of my life," he said. "I hope I can keep going in the future."

His newfound fanbase hopes for the same thing, and cannot wait to see what "out of the box" idea he comes up with next.