In 2018, Amanda Cook, an artist and poet in Gloucester, Massachusetts, initiated an art project to remember the victims of gun violence in the U.S. — more than 37,000 each year.
Her goal was to collect and exhibit 37,000 orange origami cranes as a symbol of hope and healing. Cook’s announcement spread to origami enthusiasts nationwide.
Bonnie Hurley, a member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Venice, learned of the project through her involvement with Origami USA. Hurley shared her own knowledge and passion of origami to teach adults, teens and children from the congregation and wider community how to make the paper cranes. In addition to using origami paper people had on hand and paper sent by Cook, the folders cut squares from orange construction paper, calendars, magazines, and catalogs.
Their first flock flew north in June 2019. Recently they made a third donation, which brought the group’s contribution to Cook’s exhibit, so far, to nearly 3,000 cranes.
Because orange has long been used as a symbol for both danger and safety, it was selected for the crane project. People are encouraged to wear orange on National Gun Violence Awareness Day, which takes place every June.
For more information about the origami crane project, visit orangeorigamicranes.blogspot.com