The coronavirus pandemic’s impact has been devastating in the United States. When this project started, the death toll was nearing 100,000. It has since grown to over 600,000 lives lost in the U.S. and over two million deaths worldwide.

The 100,000 Folds project seeks to help us visualize the scale of these deaths by creating 100,000 triangular origami pieces, folded by our community, that represent the first 100,000 deaths from the pandemic. I invite you to participate, if you are able. Participants will fold between 250 and 1,000 triangular units. In the process of folding each piece, you will commemorate and observe each of these lives lost, while contributing to something larger — a physical manifestation of the toll of this virus in our country. The collected 100,000 origami triangles will be constructed into sculptures to memorialize the people who’ve died. We need to remember those souls, and also to be reminded that we need to do better.

Update on 12/25/2020: Although we have enough participants in 100,000 Folds to complete our initial goal of 100,000 pieces of origami, I recognize that there are others who would like to participate in this COVID memorial project. As such, see the participate page to request a mini-mailer with 50 pieces of pre-cut red paper. This community sculpture project supports our collective grief over the coronavirus pandemic and I am honored as our paper folding community continues to grow.

Please visit this website periodically for updates and progress photos and follow us on Instagram @100thousandfolds.

A red piece of paper folded into a triangular shape.

One folded triangular origami piece; these units are the building blocks for the finished sculpture.

Close up image of a stack of red paper.

The powerful color of red was chosen for this project to symbolize the blood shed by COVID-19 victims and our anger around the mismanagement of this crisis.

“What you remember saves you”

W. S. Merwin, Green with Beasts


This sculpture project began in May, 2020 amidst the coronavirus pandemic.


  • joanna@100thousandfolds.com


Philadelphia, PA 19143