Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Calm before the storm

Things have been a bit quiet round here of late. I've been folding, but in terms of everything else, it's all on hold until September (when the funding will come through, and it will be a mad panic of rigging up the lights etc).

Last night I hit 800 cranes, and 200 seems completely doable (heck if need be, I think I could do 200 in a weekend, so there's no way I'll not make 1000). It feels a bit flat though, like because there's not much else going on there's no excitement over such a milestone; and because everything is just "ticking over", it's all feeling a bit ho-hum. I'm still mega-excited about Light Night, but at the moment there's few people to bounce it off, and those not involved are bored of it by now (and some who are involved!) and those who are are getting on with their own projects.

I've not lost my Light Night mojo, I've just temporarily misplaced it. I think we need to organise a Light Night drinking session to get the energy back up.

Want to get involved in Light Night?

This is taken directly from the Light Night website, but thought it may be of interest to some...

Light Night is an annual arts festival run by the council, which takes place at numerous venues across the city centre. It is a celebratory showcase of diverse creativeness, and gives visitors free access to art and venues that they might not normally see.

This year we are looking for a group of volunteers to work on Light Night with us and join our pool of volunteers for future events. This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone looking for experience of working in the arts, or just to enjoy Light Night from a different point of view!

Most of the volunteers will be required to provide information and collect feedback from audiences and performers (through asking people to fill out feedback forms). Some volunteers may also be asked to help with events. You will be expected to work for a shift, but we will make sure you have time to enjoy Light Night as well!

Volunteers must be age 18 or over and the deadline for applying is 5pm Friday, 27 August.

Please note: Volunteers will be required to attend a short briefing session in the afternoon on either 28 and 30 September, and will receive a Light Night t shirt.

Please send your CV and a covering letter explaining why you would like to work on Light Night to Mo Rowlands on or ring 0113 247 6419 for further information.

Further details on Light Night here:

Monday, 9 August 2010

Folding for Peace - The Event

Last week a group of people gathered to fold. Ten volunteers folded 160 cranes in just a few hours. The people there weren't origami experts or professional artists - they varied from bankers to a couple of tourists on a day trip; and all of them donated their time for free. This is the result:

It was so lovely to see, and I was so proud of the Foldageddon regulars who came, as they barely needed reminding how to fold a crane before they were teaching others:

The reason these lovely people were folding so many cranes was to commemorate the Hiroshima and Nagasaki disasters, when atomic bombs were dropped on cities. This year is the 65th anniversary, and there are still many people feeling the aftereffects of the bombs.

The Lord Mayor of Leeds organises a memorial service each year in Park Square, where there is a memorial stone and a tree that was planted by the mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Today (the anniversary of the Nagasaki bombing) I attended the memorial service. It was very moving, and there was a really good turn out. At the end of the ceremony people were invited to take a crane and place it around the memorial stone, or to fold their own. We showed several people how to fold cranes, and the whole thing seemed to really have an impact.

Thank you to everyone who passed on the word about this, everyone who came to fold, and everyone who came today. I was so proud to be a part of this, and I'm so glad that the awful events of 65 years ago are not forgotten.

Here's some pictures of the memorial after the ceremony: