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.

Yarnbombing And Commissions ; The Sonoma Valley Museum Of Art – Part 1

2 May

I was measuring a large piller in the main gallery of The Sonoma Museum Of Art when the director looked over at me and said ” Oh -you can’t yarnbomb in the gallery bitself , it changes the curation of the show that is here. ‘

Ok that made sense . The Sonoma Museum had invited me out to discuss a yarnbombing commission to go along with their gorgeous Color show. I was very pleased to be asked to yarnbomb this museum , usually I do yarnbombing unasked in front of museums as an alien landing . I had tried to yarnbomb The Sonoma Valley Museum last summer but it’s poles were to big and I couldn’t do it.

So here I was very excited to be asked. Apparently the local yarnbombers had been asked first and had been to busy. I was the ringer.

I abandoned measuring the pillar and headed for the cafe .

” Mmm You can’t yarnbomb the cafe either ” said the director ” The Color show will be in there too . Or any of the furniture in the cafe “

“Ok , is there any thing else to know ? ” I asked

“You can’t yarnbomb the front awnings or hang anything off the front of the building – the city won’t allow it. “

Oh boy , that had been my whole plan . I was feeling bad so I told myself wait , wait , wait , let something new come along . We stood and looked thoughtfully at the museum.

‘What about the hanging signs ? We have 3 signs that hang from magnets , you could cover them with knitting !’

This was brilliant – the signs are already accepted by the city and it makes the yarnbombing have more meaning – the sign about the museum becomes the art itself . It was such a good idea and all the more interesting because there were no signs up that day , that had all fallen down in the heavy winds.

It’s best to not give up , even when you ‘ re told that nothing can be done.

So I will be yarnbombing the sign , a table pedestal , 2 door handles and a large unauthorized secret real yarnbomb this Friday  May 4 in Part 2.

A Small Yarnbombing Disaster : Yarnbombing The North Berkeley Library

9 Apr

We were having a good time yarnbombing The North Berkeley Library last Friday , getting ready for their grand reopening. We had 4 glass blowing inspired knit tags and they really looked good against the new rosy tile. Lots of locals were stopping and taking pictures and thanking us. I love libraries so much and have yarnbombed many , many of them. The librarians had been pleased.

I was a little perturbed too though , the maintenance man had come by and said ‘ They will make me cut those off for sure !  I didn’t believe him- I’d done this all over Berkeley and Oakland and everyone had always liked them  .Besides -what was I going to do , be scared and just go home ?

Saturday morning I wanted to take more picture before the opening so we drove by.  The whole installation had been totally removed . I felt punched . We noticed 2 woman talking on the steps so I went over . ” Hi- I put up a knitting installation for the opening -” I started to say .

“Yes ! ” said the librarian . ‘ We took that right down ! This is the opening, people are coming to see the construction . You shouldn’t have done that ! You should have asked for permission ! You shouldn’t do anything here with out asking permission ! Don’t ever do anything here again in the future unless we ask you ! ‘ And she turned and walked away .

I was so startled. No one has ever yelled at me for making them a yarnbomb. Even policemen have always been very nice.

The other woman was smiling at me kindly .”We have it inside  ” she told me and went and got it . As she handed it to me she said ” We were very careful with it .

I looked in the bag and the pieces were flawless. That was something.

I was truly stunned . I thought about this all day and was alternatively discouraged , mad , hurt and confused .Wasn’t the whole point of street art that you don’t ask permission ? That the artist can interact with streets and cities and people on the street freely and immediately ?

Aren’t libraries for the whole community ?  Don’t they belong to us all ?  Should only one person decide everything ?

I woke up on Sunday with that feeling that something bad had happened and my mind started to churn .

I thought ” OK , you have to get past this . Find some good thoughts ! ‘

I tried – You didn’t do anything wrong . No help there

You should stop doing graffiti . nope.

Then I thought  ” This is yarnbombing ! You don’t ask permission for yarnbombing -you don’t have to get any one’s permission to do what you want to do !

That was it – I was ready to jump up and live to fight another day.

Just another yarnbombing story !

“Thank you Berkeleyside for the article here

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