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Artist creates origami crane memorial for coronavirus victims

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                Origami paper cranes hung in the Matter Studio Gallery in Los Angeles during an exhibit for those who have died in the U.S. of COVID-19, on Tuesday. Hundreds of origami now hang from the ceiling of Karla Funderburk’s Matter Studio with others sitting on tables and stacked in boxes waiting to be added to the sad reminder of the virus’ toll.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Origami paper cranes hung in the Matter Studio Gallery in Los Angeles during an exhibit for those who have died in the U.S. of COVID-19, on Tuesday. Hundreds of origami now hang from the ceiling of Karla Funderburk’s Matter Studio with others sitting on tables and stacked in boxes waiting to be added to the sad reminder of the virus’ toll.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                Artist Karla Funderburk, owner of Matter Studio Gallery, adjusted one of the thousands of origami cranes hanging during an exhibit honoring the victims of COVID-19, Tuesday, in Los Angeles. Funderburk started making the cranes three months earlier, stringing the paper swans in pink, blue, yellow and many other colors together and hanging them in her gallery.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Artist Karla Funderburk, owner of Matter Studio Gallery, adjusted one of the thousands of origami cranes hanging during an exhibit honoring the victims of COVID-19, Tuesday, in Los Angeles. Funderburk started making the cranes three months earlier, stringing the paper swans in pink, blue, yellow and many other colors together and hanging them in her gallery.

An artist in Los Angeles is memorializing each of the thousands of people who have died from COVID-19 in the United States with a delicate origami crane.

Karla Funderburk started making the cranes three months ago, stringing the paper swans in pink, blue, yellow and many other colors together and hanging them in her art gallery.

“I was feeling the loss, and one way to process that was I started folding cranes. Cranes are a traditional Japanese symbol of carrying the soul to heaven,” she said.

She tried making 10 cranes each night but when on May 14 the number of deaths ticked to 88,000 she realized it would take her 24 years to complete them and she asked for help.

Now volunteers drop off scores of the elegantly made paper swans daily.

“I started receiving boxes and bags. Sometimes I would get one crane with one name on it, some boxes had 300,” she said.

Hundreds now hang from the ceiling of her Matter Studio with others sitting on tables and stacked in boxes waiting to be added to the sad reminder of the virus’ toll. The gallery’s website also lists hundreds of names of virus victims.

“I feel like this space is holding, holding the place, for the remembrances of the souls we are losing.”

More than 165,000 people in the U.S. have died of COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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