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Otto Nordström : the BOS papers #5

The World's First International Exhibition of Origami (Paper-folding) Ever to have Been Held in the Northern Finland .....

.... was held between January 16 and 19 in Kurt's living-room window (as explained in Report no. 4) and was a great success. Unfortunately, his electricity meter broke on the second day, so the exhibition could not be lit up to be seen except for the one hour a day when the sun was up. Fortunately though, the visitor could still see it if he shone a torch through the glass... and it looked very nice! Kurt had repainted the window-frame and sill, and his mum (see Report no. 4) had made some new curtains. A large sign (see Report title) hung in the window to attract passers-by, and also those waiting for a bus at the stop across the road.

The exhibition featured some of the traditional classics from the Northern Finland ( see Report no. 1), stuck on bits of cardboard. It's centre-piece was an animal scene of elephants, polar bears and spiders with some pigeons, ostriches and other birds hung on bits of string above them by Montroll, Jackson, Wall and other origami superstars. There wasn't much room left for anything else. Lots and lots of nice paper was used to show how good the models were. I gave demonstrations every day, sat on a chair facing the window, and was pleased to see that quite a crowd gathered until their bus came.

We wrote to the Japanese Consul informing them of our important exhibition. They sent us a polite letter back, enclosing a photocopy of an entry from a Japanese encyclopaedia which, we think, told us what origami was. The entry included a photograph of the traditional the Northern Finnish the "Flapping Duck". The local press were also informed, but their reporter unfortunately came during the dark part of the day after the electricity meter had broken (see paragraph 1) and could not find it. A reporter from the national radio station was coming to interview me, but got stuck in a snow-drift and has yet to arrive. Nevertheless, despite the lack of publicity, we estimate that some 193 visitors walked past the window during the time that the exhibition was up. A remarkable total!

Several people knocked on the door to ask questions about the show. Most wanted to know where could they buy the nice papers that we had used, and how were we coping with no electricity? Some said that they would like to know more about origami, but couldn't be bothered to do so. One person was very interested and says that she might come to one of our meetings (see Report no. 4). A convert! Origami is getting big in the Northern Finland!

What did we learn from the exhibition? Well, we learnt that the electricity Council is slow in mending broken meters, that buses don't run to time, that glass steams up when you breathe on it, that the 'group exhibit was more popular than the individual one and that we didn't use quite enough nice papers.

Our thanks to those folders who contributed models to the show. They will receive a photo of the window with Kurt, his mum and me in front of it, a comprehensive catalogue and instructions showinc how they too can make an important contribution to the world.

My next Report in the next issue of this magazine will describe a teaching session that I did recently at the local Christian Magician's Youth Institute for Women. It is revelatory.

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