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Yarnbombing – 65 Yarnbombed Trees Ruttopuisto Park , Helsinki , Finland

29 Sep IMG_9976

There were 65 yarnbombed trees in this unprecedented and unparalleled yarnbombing action called Knit n ‘ Tag  in Ruttopuisto Park , Helsinki , Finland .  Aug 25 until Sept 27 2012 .

3  Great Things About This

1 This yarnboming of Ruttopuisto park was organized by The Youth Department of Helsinki part of The World Design Capitol 2012 programs . Ruttopuisto Park is also called ” Old Church Park “and ”  Plague Park . “

2 . The Youth Department took pictures of all the trees in the park and invited any one in Finland to pick a  tree and cover it . You could make anything you wanted , no jurying , everyone was welcome . If you couldn’t make a whole tree you could just send a little piece of knitting and it would get sewn into something bigger . The Exhibition was named Knit n ‘ Tag .

3 . The day of the installation there was a huge party , 4000 people came , there was music , food and contests. For weeks after ward people flocked the park to stroll around all the yarnbombed the  trees and take pictures .

This is an unimaginable amount of knitting  , crocheting and sparkling creativity to make 65 yarnbombed trees . 

Lets look at what it took just to make one tree by Palone Design Concepts Store .

The Tree of Dreams

Molla Mills , one of the designers at Paloni ,  made the directions for a crocheted chain . 4 workshops were set up to make chain and tens of crocheters aged 4 to 82 obsessively crocheted chain .  Paloni also decided to include little signs that described peoples’ dreams for the new City Library . The finished chain was 130 meters , roughly 650 meters of crocheting .

Their message was  ” textile graffiti brings joy , brings joy and cures our handicraft trauma . “

so that’s 2 of the 65 trees. more here .

Here are a few more of the yarnbombed trees from this lavish art exhibition.

these beautiful pictures are by Susanna . her blog is here

So I have 3 things to say about this

a. Part of what is great about yarnbombing is it includes everyone , anyone can do it anytime , children , new knitters , serious artist, lone yarnbombers , youth groups , old age homes , anyone who wants to . This is an amazing terrific exhibition and it had no jury .

b. The Art World is so compressed , only a few people can get to be artists . What if everyone was welcomed to be an artist ? What if woman’s work was considered  as something worth looking at ? Well covering a whole park of trees with textiles –  it  lets you look .

c. I’ve always been excited to find one yarnbombed tree  . 65 trees !  I had to look at a few and then go take some deep breaths . I can’t grasp how many people enjoyed getting to yarnbomb.

As well as the 65 trees Knit n’ Tag  also yarnbombed this lovely gold plastic cow.

 

Yarnbombing – A Yarnbombed Bus In Iceland

21 Aug

The Reykjavik Underground Yarnstormers yarnbombed a bus for Culture Night Aug 18 2012 in Reykjavik , Iceland .

30 knitters and crocheters worked for 6 weeks to make the installation .  It took  20 yarnbombers 8 hours to install .  The yarnbombing will stay up until it wears out .

What I Love About This

The Reykjavik Yarnstormers were asked to do this – I love that yarnbombers are being asked to contribute to everything now , festivals , country fairs , museums , city improvements , libraries , gallery shows . It’s such an act of generosity by the knitters – they usually do it for love and fun not money . This bus is beautiful and filled with finely detailed crocheted lace and fair isle knitting , you would feel like you are in your home while you were out in public . A chance to ride around in art .

Plus it’s Iceland , it seems like all the buses should be knitted . It’s bus 196 if you go see to Iceland to see it .

All pictures and the story are from Reykjavik Underground Yarnstormers  here .

Yarnbombing And The Seattle Mariner’s Glove

30 Jul

                                                                                                             photo by Suzanne Tidwell

The Seattle Mariner’s Baseball Glove sculpture outside Safeco Stadium yarnbombed July 26 2012 .

3  Great Things About This

1 . The Glove was yarnbombed for Stitch And Pitch , A festive occasion for people who like to knit and cheer at baseball games .  And there are many.

2. This was knit through World Visions U.S.A. with Knit for Kids Initiative . That means all the knitting will be sent to children when this yarnbomb is taken down . The knitting itself was done by Pacific Fibers with the great Seattle yarnbomber Suzanne Tidwell consulting and knitting the spine .

3. The first pitch at the game was thrown out by writer Debbie MacComber who often writes about knitting .  I think more knitting writers should go into professional baseball . Also The Mariners won .

Creative secret :   We all need a reason to create . We need to have it clear in our mind – or we won’t create – we will  just wash the dishes instead .

Here are 2  great reasons – make a great yarnbomb  to delight the Mariners baseball fans  and then give all the knitting to children afterwards .  Art and charity and knitting  .

Aesthetics  ;  A giant knitted glove  – your eye can clearly see that this is a baseball glove and it’s so humorous to see it knit . We all have had knitted gloves to wear so when you look at the knitting you can feel it in your body  .  It’s beautiful and reassuring at the same time .

more about Suzanne Tidwell here

Yarnbombing And Knitted Tractors

26 Jul

This yarnbombed tractor was created by The Athenry Craft And Chat group for The Athenry Agricultural Show in Galway Ireland July 8 2012.  Photo By  Helen Jennings .

3 Great Things About This

1.This tractor was knitted over 4 months by 29 members of the Craft group . How they must have chortled together imagining a tractor !!! covered in knitting . And crocheting  .

2 . How does one come up with an idea like ” You know – we should yarnbomb a tractor ! “

This is how :   A member of this group was busy yarnbombing with A Galway university knitting group . { It seems that everyone in Galway yarnbombs with great fortitude , even the children } So this woman was talking to a member of The Athenry Agricultural Show who thought a yarnbombed tractor would be a great draw for the show . So they found a farmer with a restored tractor and persuaded him that it should be yarnbombed .

3. This tractor is now in a prettiest tractor in Ireland competition .

Creative Secret  : This is really one of the most delirious yarnbombings I’ve seen . So – think of the most crazy idea you can possibly come up with and get all your friends to help .

Aesthetics ; Many textile artists are interested in the contrast of male and female and use knitting with guns and tanks and men’s locker rooms . I like the  pretty colorful knitting on a nice metal tractor . But it’s a cliche to say men drive tractors and woman knit.

It’s a truth to say we all want to create what ever we want to create .

There is  the satisfying image of a farmer driving this tractor through the fields . Yarnbombing has this comic  quality that transforms an every day object into something delightful .

So while you are thinking this over I leave you with this another bonus yarnbomb .

Yarnbombed porta potty by Sue Caldwell and the patrons of her knitting store ” Lovelyarns ” in Baltimore Maryland .  ArtScape festival June 21 2012 Baltimore Maryland .

more here and here

yarnbombing And Knitted Houses

13 Jul

Image

This knitted house was made for The London Architecture Biennale by the group Knitting Site in June 2006.

3  Great Thing About This

1 . The house was knit over a 2 storey scaffolding on the site.

2. It was knitted from all recycled materials , plastic  , garbage bags and rope. The group said they really like building materials .

3 .A quote from the group ” While some people think knitting should remain behind walls , we build walls that are knitted “

Creative secret – Use odd, old and recycled materials to knit with . Knit very big , make a shelter from knitting .

Aesthetics – The plastic makes this house transparent so you can see the houses behind it . The earthy colors look like grass – nice contrast to the coarse urban materials.

Yarnbombing And The Galway Hooker

25 Jun

This Sail sculpture  in  Eyre Square , Galway , Ireland was yarnbombed Monday June 4 2012.

3  Great things about this:

1 . This yarnbomb was made by the school children of a local school – Tirellan National School . A teacher at the school – Karla Bodeker  – saw a book on yarnbombing and asked the children at the school if they would like to make an installation .  At the beginning most of the children could not knit and were taught by their grandparents , aunts , uncles and friends. The knitting took almost 5 months. 134 students knit and made 2086 patches.

2 .  This sculpture refers to a traditional fishing boat called  ” The Galway  Hooker. “

3.The yarnbomb was installed and then guarded over night to stop vandals. I hope it was the children guarding.

Creative secret ; Children are great artist , loose , confident , playful , unafraid of color.

Making art is natural .

Aesthetics ; The repeating squares are like musical beats. Color and pattern look wonderful over 3- d shapes, the sail shapes are especially exhilarating covered with color . Wonderful.

Links. http://galwayindependent.com/stories/item/2805/2012-25/No-more-plain-sailing!

Yarnbombing And Global Yarnbombing

24 Jun

I hate yarnbombing puns but global yarnbombing sounds so much like global warming which yarnbombing does in an arty way .

I find myself consumed with reading about yarnbombing all over the world and taking illegible notes in my ruled notebook. I am always getting obsessed with something and I have learned to just go after it . I have been sitting and waiting for a long time for someone to thoroughly document everything about international yarnbombing . It would be such a valuable , time consuming , thankless , unpaid and odd undertaking.

Perfect for me.

So I’m starting a new series here to document the fantastic yarnbombing streetart of others . With some of my undertakings shoved in too.

On that note – this well chronicled North Berkeley Library bike rack has had a ridiculous ending – someone stole it last week after  only 2 weeks of it being up .

What did I learn from this .

Maybe that it’s not worth all the trouble of asking permission for an ephemeral out door undertaking that can be easily swiped.

Maybe that I would like to do some bigger legal commissions. We shall see.

Image

yarnbombing And Patience ; Yarnbombing The North Berkeley Library The Second Time

11 Jun

 

You may remember when I yarnbombed The North Berkeley Library for their opening in April  –  the knitting got taken down by the library the next day .  At that time I vowed that I would get permission to put them back up  , what ever it took . I knew that I needed to wait a while – other wise the library could feel like I was nagging .  I wanted them to feel like this was something good and pleasurable – not arm twisting .  After much waiting and thinking  I came up with this – I proposed that I would put up new knitted tags on a date of their choice and remove it on a date of their choice . It is true I can’t argue – the knitting can get very dirty when it is up for several months . There was some slow negotiating and  I finally got permission. After waiting for 2 months  I was feeling pretty neutral   , I was ready to do get those yarnbombs sewn up and get it done .

I put up  2 new  knitted tags and 2 old ones from the failed April yarnbombing  . My friend Nancy  helped me sew the first time helped me put them up again which was nice and symmetrical .  I think the piece looks darker and calmer   –  that’s good , it’s how I feel .

For the last 2 months , every time I have driven past those bike racks  I have looked over at them thinking the knitting might be there again.  Now the bike racks finally look like they have been in my imagination all this time . They looks warm and well permitted.

An article in Berkeleyside here

yarnbombing And Yarnbombing Your House

23 May

‘Have you ever yarnbombed your home ? ” The magazine editor asked ” I’m really interested in interior design “

This was a very interesting idea to me and also very funny. Yarnbombing my home !  My home had been bombed with yarn completely in just the terrorist mess way , there is yarn  and knitting everywhere.  Not in a home decor sort of way.

I like it when some one else gives me some structure so I decided to yarnbomb some furniture . I didn’t want to yarnbomb a whole room , my work is to colorful and I need my home to be a still calm  place .  But I thought it would be beautiful to see knitting on a small complex stool . Actually I thought it would be fine to yarnbomb 100 of them but perhaps start with one . I bought 2 stools from Wal Mart and sat down and waited for them to be shipped .

I got tired of waiting and decided to yarnbomb a stool I had already . When you have a new idea and you are excited it’s important to start right away and use that excitement as fuel . I had to knit many tiny fussy strips and measure constantly. It took a really long time . I talked to myself in an encouraging way-

” This is just the first one, it’s ok to mess up “

“You learning something new, that is a slow thing “

” You are going to get to keep this, it’s ok that it’s taking your time – time is converting into art “

After 2 weeks the stools arrived at Wal Mart and I went to get them . That was scary , my heavens .  However the stools were amazingly good. I started sewing up my knitting . Learning , learning.

When I finished I had looked at it for so long that I couldn’t see it anymore. I took many pictures and liked the knitting best outdoors. More yarnbomby .

I’m fascinated , perplexed, anxious and pleased about this yarnbomb. Hmmm 99 more to do.

Yarnbombing And Commissions Part 2 : The Sonoma Valley Museum Of Art

10 May

I just did not want to climb up that 15 ft ladder and hang the yarnbombed sign from the awning . We had driven over to The Sonoma Valley Museum of Art to put up a lot of knitting they had commissioned to go with their “Color ” show. I also had brought a big street art piece that was a real yarnbomb – which is to say questionably legal sort of legal.

Maybe I could get Christine the intern to climb up and hang the sign .

“Can you climb up the ladder and hang the sign ? ” I asked sweetly .

“I’m too short ” she answered.

I went trailing after Margie , the educational director. ” I think someone who works for the museum should climb up the ladder ” I whined ” You know , for liability “

“Well – I have an appointment , so I can’t ” Margie said. Oh drats.

” But ” she said  changing the subject ” You know we have all these high school students here – would you be willing to talk to them about yarnbombing ? “

This sounded good to me , so we all piled into the little library . The students seemed unusually awake. I decided rather than tell them about yarnbombing – I would teach them to be yarnbombers . So gave them the steps-

Look all around at the city , find a pole or a rack , measure it carefully , knit or crochet a tag [or get someone you know to knit or crochet a tag } Sew it onto the pole very tightly , take a picture , post it on Facebook .

Change the city.

They all seemed pretty open to this idea . I pictured mobs of high school students beautifying. I went outside and yarnbombed the cafe table.

The students rode away on their bikes . I went back into the workroom to sew my yarnbomb over the vinyl museum sign . I rolled around my worries – would the yarnbomb fit over the sign ? Would the sign stay up or would it fall on someones head ? Would the police bother me ? Why couldn’t I ever find my scissors ?

Hah ! The big magnets on the sign had grabbed them . In came Emily from the Sonoma Index to interview me. I really really like to talk about yarnbombing. I was hoping she would write something thoughtful and not just make lots of  yarn puns . Emily was very smart and I learned a lot about the trials of the journalist in this internet age .

I finished sewing up my cover and Emily called Robbie to come take picture . We all trooped out to the street to watch me sew up the uncommissioned graffiti yarnbomb I had knit for the big street light . Robbie showed up and took pictures and talked to me about Picasso as I sewed my huge swath of knitting . I’ve been watching a lot a of art documentaries streaming on Netflix to get me through all day knitting binges  . When the pole was all sewn up we dragged the cursed ladder over and I slid this long yarnbomb up 15 ft . That was fun. I had never been able to get a yarnbombup that high before. Ah , knitting looks so good when it’s enormous.

The director arrived . Oh good. ” Would you like to go up the ladder and hang the yarnbombing sign ? ” I asked politely

” Oh no ” the director said ” I think you should do it “

So I climbed up with my sign and stuck it to the green metal awning with the big magnets .

” How does it look ?’ I asked Christine the intern .

” It needs to be over more ” she said . Oh dear .

I took hold of the sign and pulled down really hard The magnets releases suddenly . I swayed back . My knee slipped. ” How about this ? ‘ I  said bravely and stuck it the sign up again .

” No “

A few more pops and swings we got the sign placed. Very sweaty.

Margie returned.

” Can I help sew up the door handles ? ” She asked . Great yes wonderful .

Margie sewed , I sewed , I tore out the knitting , I reknit the knitting, we got the little handles all covered with knitting. Small children admired them.

The real world is very tiring. The museum looked changed and friendly covered with knitting . I hear that the knitting has stayed up for a week now. I hope it helps everyone stay more relaxed.

The Sonoma Index article is here.

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