1000 Cranes is inspired by an ancient Japanese legend: if a group of 1000 origami cranes (known in Japanese as senbazuru) are hung in one’s home it will act as a powerful and benevolent charm and bring good luck.
The senbazuru legend found new and poignant relevance in Japan through the actions of a young girl tragically affected by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945. Sadako Sasaki was exposed to dangerous levels of radiation from the bombing and by age 12 had developed leukaemia. After months in hospital, Sadako-san was inspired to begin the intricate process of folding 1000 origami cranes.
She became too weak to finish the project but after her death, her classmates completed the senbazuru in her honour. Influenced by her story the practice of senbazuru grew in popularity throughout Japan.
The artists who created 1000 Cranes, Ambient & Co believe that the senbazuru legend has great significance for today’s world, deeply affected by constant negativity.
They have created a canopy of hanging origami cranes that light up as visitors move through the space. As the crowd grows more cranes light up until 1000 cranes are fully illuminated.
The artists also invite individuals to post their own aspirational messages at #hope on Twitter. Their sentiments will be analysed and reflected back to the installation through changes in the colour of the illuminated cranes.
The aim is to unify the community around Vivid Sydney and send a positive message into the nightsky.
Ambient & Co: Christopher Simpson (Australia) / Anthony Zeater (Australia) / Isabella Bain (Australia) / James Rotanson (Australia) / Khanh Nguyen (Australia)
According to ancient Japanese legend, anyone with the patience to fold 1000 origami cranes will be granted a wish by the gods. What the legend fails to mention are the late nights and fast food it apparently takes to get the job done if you happen to be on a strict deadline - as was Vivid designer Isabella Bain... ~ By Nick Galvin
Updated 24 May 2018 — 4:46pm first published at 4:16pm