Owen Byrne

He Does It Again! Owen Byrne, Origami Salami Ridgewood(Queens) New York City, folds 1,000 Origami Cranes, for Folding for Good!

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When the call goes out to Fold for Good, Owen Byrne, President, Origami Salami Queens, New York City, answers big. He folded 1,000 for Operation Sandy Hook and answered with an encore for, “Folding for Good for Franklin Regional.” This time, he also strung his army of 1,000 and accented with a top ring of silver beads reading, “Peace; Hope; Love.” There is a white leader crane crowning the top. Do one good deed a day….or maybe a thousand when you make the time for it.

Here are Owen’s thoughts about Folding for Good for Franklin Regional.

Calista, 

Since I’m a firm believer in doing one good deed a day for others, it was an easy decision for me to participate in the Franklin Regional High School OS Project.

It took me two weeks and all of my free time, which I don’t have a lot of: between homework, research projects, saxophone and piano practice for concerts, scouting and few more activities, I had to stay up late quite a few nights to fold cranes. photo 3

Folding the 1000 cranes for FRHS meant a lot to me. I know that I can’t prevent violence in schools, but what I can do is to promote peace – that is what I want to achieve by making these peace cranes ‘armies’ for those schools which experience such sadness.

At first, my plan was to just make simple Senbazuru, but when I was at the craft store to get plain beads and string for it, I found beads with peace, hope, love words on them, and at that moment I knew I had to include them in my Senbazuru.

For me, peace in my design stands for: all kids deserve to grow up in a peaceful and happy environment. Schools should be a safe place for all.

Love stands for: show respect towards one other and be nice to the people around you.

Hope stands for: no more violence in schools. Hope that somebody will notice troubled kids and help them before they use violence as a way to be seen or heard.

As I was folding the cranes, I was thinking about the life story of Sadako Sasaki and her words: “I will write peace on your wings and you will fly all over the world.”

Peace to You,

Owen

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Folding for Good: Art Meets Science @ the Carnegie Science Center

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Detailed Description of the Five Origami Window Panes at the Exhibit

The repetitious folding of cranes as a mental discipline in an effort to do good is as satisfying as it is productive. It is a physical representation of your hopes and wishes of support for the recipient. A profound act of kindness.

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Thousands of people joined together for our “Operation Sandy Hook” initiative through which I collected over 10,000 cranes and crane projects for the new Sandy Hook school.There are many individual and personal stories that come with our “Operation Sandy Hook” initiative, and with the donation of the over 10,000 origami cranes which were folded in 13 countries, then mailed to me in Pennsylvania. Every parcel was carefully packaged, so that no delicate crane or crane project arrived damaged or crumpled.

I am getting requests for more descriptive information about the exhibit design and plan, and I am happy to provide more details.

First of all, “Folding for Good: Art Meets Science” included a fun interactive component—I invited Carnegie Science visitors to Fold for Good with me and many dear teaching folding friends on Thursday, October 3, and Saturdays October 5, 12, and 19, 2013.  We greeted over 750 science center visitors at our post on the third floor in the beautiful Overlook Room. Many of the visitors were first time folders who left behind 234 origami cranes, which I strung into the cascade shown here. Other volunteers who taught the crane include members of the Japan America Society of Pennsylvania, Origami Club of the University of Pittsburgh, the Origami Club of Pittsburgh and Folding for Good leadership.

Only 5,050 cranes of the 10,000 cranes collected were included in the exhibit due to space limitations and safety concerns. In the background of the photos is the skyline of the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Five Window Panes of Origami Peace Cranes

Pane 1 AfricaPane 2 JapanPane 3

                      Window 1                                                  Window 2                                                 Window 3             

Window 1                      

Origami for Africa, Kyoko Kimura, Director, contributed the central cascade, which is comprised of 634 strung cranes with beads. These cranes are multicolored and folded from all types and sizes of paper. It is a colorful tapestry representation of peace.

Window 2

The central senbazuru in Window 2 was folded and strung by Janet Locke of Tochigi, Japan and sent as a gift to her sister, Julie Ash of Olympia, Washington, USA, to commemorate a family event. In turn, it was forwarded by Ms. Ash to us. These 1,000 cranes are perfectly matched and constitute a “senbazuru,” the traditional 1,ooo cranes folded for a single wish.

Window 3

Window 3 features another 1,000 cranes senbazuru folded by Owen Byrne, President Origami Salami Iota, Ridgewood, New York. Owen’s “1001 Crane Army” was received packaged by 100’s and then was strung for the exhibit with assistance from the Origami Club of the University of Pittsburgh.

Pane 4 USA red white blue FoldingForGood_CSCExhibit-0481photo (42)

                        Window 4                                               Window 5                                                              Full Display

Window 4

The 1,000 red, silver, and blue metallic cranes centered in Window 4 were folded by Kimi Ego and family, Torrance, California, USA. All were received packaged and sorted by 100’s, and then were strung by me and a few friends.

Window 5

The central cascade of Window 5 represents the crane wishes of hundreds of participants worldwide. A few friends and I strung the center cascade from many sizes of paper and lots of patterns to create a tapestry of color that coordinated with Window 1 from Origami for Africa. The single, oversized crane that dangled from the cascade was folded by Sydney Perrine, President, Origami Salami Kappa and Folding for Good 10, Melbourne, Florida, and was the only window composed in this way. Sydney’s crane appeared to be flying over the “Point,” which is the spot in Pittsburgh marking the convergence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers to form the Ohio River. It is a lovely spot, and made for a striking background.

Set up

I strung all of the 10, ten foot long strands which flanked the centered cascades. It starts as a slow process, but as you get used to it, it is quite a bit of fun and very relaxing a mental exercise. I added facetted beads to the bottoms of all of the strands to catch the sunshine.

The facilities staff of the Science Center hung all of the crane senbazuru, cascades, and strands.

In closing, I am pleased to say that the touching messages written on so many cranes form the text of a photo essay in progress. Operation Sandy Hook became much more than an expression of sympathy at the happenings of the school murders there. It became a multicultural experience that gives everyone everywhere hope in the face of inexplicable tragedy.

Again, thanks everyone.

Owen Byrne joins Calista Frederick-Jaskiewicz to Fold for Good with Visitors at the Carnegie Science Center

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On October 5, 2013, I welcomed Owen Byrne to the Carnegie Science Center, to fold with visitors from noon-2 pm in the Overlook Room. Byrne, who is the President of Origami Salami Iota in Ridgewood, New York, staged several events involving hundreds of students in support of our Folding for Good initiative, “Operation Sandy Hook: Peace,” through which we have collected over 10,000 origami peace cranes from participants in 13 countries in support of the Sandy Hook Elementary community, Newtown, CT.

CSC Overlook 10.5.13On December 14, 2012, a gunman entered Sandy Hook Elementary School and murdered 20 students  and six teachers and staff.

Byrne folded 1,001 peace cranes himself, which I layer strung with members of the University of Pittsburgh Origami Club. Byrne calls his contribution, “Owen’s Army,” and included just one extra peace crane which is different from all the others. Owen says that the one plaid crane, amid 1,000 floral cranes, is the “captain crane!”

Thanks to Owen and to his family for making the trip to Carnegie Science Center to see our exhibit, “Folding for Good.” Our 5,050 strung origami crane cascades are on display through November 3, 2013, in the OMNIMAX atrium windows, and can be viewed without paying an admission fee. Or just look over at the Science Center from across the street at Heinz Field; you can see it from there.

Also see press coverage in Owen’s hometown: Times Newsweekly, serving Queens and Brooklyn.