Meet Kelli Nyman

April 26, 2024

Kelli Nyman’s abstract wall art defies definition, but it’s endlessly customizable.

Text by Robert Kiener

As she chats in her light-filled Cambridge, Massachusetts, home, abstract paper artist Kelli Nyman laughs when she admits it is hard to explain exactly what to call her innovative artwork. “Some have called it origami art, others wall sculptures, and still others paper wall art,” says the thirty-eight-year-old. “I think ‘wall art’ covers it, but I’m more interested in creating it than labeling it.”

While Nyman’s art may be based on the traditional craft of origami, it is far more inspired, complex, and multilayered. Nyman’s pieces, which are typically framed like paintings and designed to hang on a wall, combine the rigid, geometric patterns of origami and the free-form elements of painting. “I start with traditional interlocking origami paper shapes, but then I get inspired and add different colors, shapes, and textures to each piece,” she explains. “It’s that infinite combination, the blending of elements, that intrigues me. It’s almost like I am painting with paper.”

Interestingly, that marriage of the traditional and the artistic is also part of Nyman’s personal history. After earning a bachelor’s degree in design and
merchandising from Drexel University, she worked in fashion merchandising and marketing for more than a decade. In her spare time, Nyman discovered origami and was instantly attracted to its possibilities. “The more I experimented with it, the more I realized I could use it as a starting point to express myself,” she says.

In 2017, Nyman opened an Etsy shop, and her work began selling widely. A large four-panel commission for Washington, D.C.’s Grand Hyatt hotel helped convince her to quit her full-time job and launch her art career. She named her new enterprise Kaleidowall, based on the Greek words kalos (beautiful) and eidos (shape).

In addition to her studio work, she has also completed numerous commissions for residential settings. “It’s so challenging—and fun—to collaborate with homeowners,” she says. “I like creating art that is specially related to the space it will occupy.” Working out of a Somerville, Massachusetts, studio, Nyman continues to explore her unusual artistic niche by, as she explains, “playing with light, shadows, colors, and textures.” She smiles and adds, “I am so lucky!”

EDITOR’S NOTE: To see more of Kelli Nyman’s work, visit

Find A Resource

Search from hundreds of home services, products, destinations, and real estate opportunities.

View All Resources