Origami for White Night in Košice was folded by everybody – children, students, the handicapped, pensioners and even prisoners

Amongst the firsts recorded about this year’s White Night/Nuit Blanche 2013 will also be the participative work by the French artist, Mademoiselle Maurice. It will be made of 30,000 pieces of colourful origami and installed on the wall of the Executioner’s House of Mikluš Prison. Its magic also lies in the fact that the wider public will also participate. This week in Košice schools, dormitories, and children’s clubs as well as in social services homes and prisons, folding of the necessary origami is finishing.

Mademoiselle Maurice lives in Paris and creates her works mainly using paper and thread. As she says, she loves their malleability and the emotions which these pieces can induce if they are placed in a public area and disturb the city drabness. The old Japanese art of paper folding – origami – attracted her during her stay in Japan. In the country of the rising sun, she experienced earthquakes, a tsunami as well as the explosion of the nuclear power station in Fukushima. These tragic events, together with the story of the little girl called Sadako, who believed the old legend that if she folded a thousand paper cranes (orizuru) she will recover from leukaemia caused by radiation from the atom bomb, led her to create street art works using origami.

hk copyIt isn’t just people from Košice, but people from the entire region who were given the opportunity to participate in her art.  Almost 20 Košice primary schools, secondary school students, university students accommodated in Košice dormitories, as well as clients from the DOMKO Košice social services home, ANIMA Michalovce and SUBSIDIUM in Rožňava, visitors to the Stonožka Family Centre, students from the School of Applied Arts as well as prisoners from the Institute for Imprisonment and Remand in Košice were involved in the origami. Also taking part were the management and Mayor of Košice, Richard Raši, who, as a former student of the Šrobárova secondary grammar school, went back to his alma mater and on Tuesday, 24 September, together with its current students, will be making origami for White Night.

However, the White Night team from Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 is inviting everybody who would like to join in, “We really invite everybody. Due to the magnificence of this art piece, on Wednesday, 25 September at 5.00pm in the Barracks/Culture Park, we are preparing a public workshop where we are going to teach people how to create origami with us. Everyone who wishes to join in can do so. You can also apply via the email address alexandra.varcholova@kosice2013.sk and will be sent the necessary instructions,” stressed the Curator of White Night, Zuzana Pacáková.

Mademoiselle Maurice’s installation is being created thanks to the support of the Košice self-governing region within the Terra Incognita programme. “Cooperation with actors in the sphere of culture is very important for us. We don’t want the situation where the existence and development in this area is just in the hands of professionals who work and act in the area of culture,” stated the Head of the Department of Culture and Tourism of KSK, Jana Kovácsová and she clarified that this idea is perceived mainly as an opportunity to involve schools and social services facilities. “Especially if you realise that education via art is meaningful not only for the sick but also for the healthy. It is a tool for lifting the spirit and the mind as well as for developing skills and crafts. In our long term Terra Incognita programme, cooperation with those involved is crucial, including those who haven’t been involved to date. We are really looking forward to the results and we believe that we’ll be able to use this experience elsewhere since this is also a pilot project for us and we would like to build upon it. We are the founders of secondary schools, social services facilities and cultural institutions, and this is the potential which can be built upon,” added J. Kovácsová.

This work will be one of six created by French artists and can be seen during this year’s White Night in Košice also thanks to the fact that the main partner of White Night 2013 is the French Institute in Slovakia/Institut Français de Slovaquie. Alliance Française de Košice will also provide significant partner support as well as VSE RWE Group and EU Japan Fest.

PARTICIPANTS in creating origami for White Night/Nuit Blanche 2013 in Košice:

Primary Schools: ZŠ Gemerská 2, ZŠ Belehradská 21, ZŠ Tomášikova 31, ZŠ Bukovecká 17, ZŠ Kežmarská 30, ZŠ Kežmarská 28, ZŠ Bruselská 18, ZŠ Postupimská 37, ZŠ Krosnianska 2, ZŠ Mateja Lechkého, ZŠ Ľudovíta Fullu, ZŠ Námestie Laca Novomeského, ZŠ Trebišovská 10, ZŠ Spojená škola, Vojenská 13,

Secondary grammar schools: Gymnázium Šrobárova, Gymnázium Milana Rastislava Štefánika, Gymnázium Alejová,

School dormitories: School dormitory at Medická 2, Anton Garban School dormitory, Werferova 10, School dormitory at Považská 7,

Social services homes in Košice self-governing region: DSS DOMKO Košice, DSS ANIMA Michalovce, DSS SUBSIDIUM Rožňava,

Public figures: Mayor of the City of Košice Richard Raši, Deputy Mayoress of Košice Renáta Lenártová,

Others: Stonožka Family Centre Košice, School of Applied Art Košice, Institute for Imprisonment and Remand in Košice.

NOTE: The list of origami creators is not complete as it is gradually growing to include all those to take part and like Košice White Night

For more about Mademoiselle Maurice go to:



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