1,000 Swallows in a French Olive Tree

Updated: Nov 21, 2019



The annual White Picnic, Saint-Paul de Vence

How long does it take to make 1,000 paper birds? Three birds per string, 333 strings? Deadline: 30 days.

The math: 33.3 birds per day for 30 days. 3.3 minutes per bird. Total: 55 folding hours. Repetitive stress injury in left thumb, not to mention back & shoulders.

Installation begins in the very wee hours of the morning before the event

By sunrise the flock is flying.


The birds were hatched in a house just below the village churchtower

Guests fill plaza with white tablecloths and white summer dresses

In France, swallows are a protected species. 2019 is the national Year of the Swallow and House Martin.


Most of the city's olive trees are pruned to resemble a lacy parasol when you're standing underneath. Except with a hole in the top.

A thousand thanks to the City of St. Paul de Vence for the invitation to participate!


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