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Art

Oversized Crocheted Doilies by Ashley V Blalock Climb Up Trees and Gallery Walls

March 21, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Artist Ashley V Blalock crochets enormous red doilies that she then installs in site-specific configurations ranging from galleries to stairwells to trees outside. Her ongoing project, Keeping Up Appearances, began in 2011 and has been installed at museums, galleries, and gardens across the United States.

The artist describes the meaning behind Keeping Up Appearances: “Although non-threatening in a domestic setting, in the gallery and at this scale the [doilies] overtake the viewer and cover the walls… Inherent is a compulsion to arrange and place and decorate in order to control or influence a perceived outward appearance. The red color gives away the futility of such an act and hints at the unease that lurks below the surface of an obsessive need to control and arrange.”

Blalock is based in Southern California. She received a bachelor’s and two master’s degrees in sculpture and art history. You can see more of her installation work on her website.

 

 



Craft Science

Crocheted and Embroidered Bacteria Grow in Elin Thomas’s Fiber Art Petri Dishes

March 19, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Elin Thomas creates petri dishes filled with mold, but she’s not using any week-old peanut butter sandwiches. The fiber artist builds her science experiments using a felted wool base, and then carefully crafts individual growths using crochet and embroidery techniques. Most of her creations are set in authentic 8cm borosilicate glass petri dishes, although she also makes free-form brooches and other accessories in a similar style.

Thomas has an MA in Visual Culture from Bath Spa University College, and she is based in the UK and Wales. The artist sells her work, including custom orders, on her website and Etsy store. (via #WOMENSART)

 

 



Art

Brittle Skeletons Crocheted from Discarded Textiles by Caitlin McCormack

October 31, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Philadelphia-based artist Caitlin McCormack (previously) continues to explore the decay and remains of once-living things in her intricate crochet work. McCormick constructs her pieces using a labor intensive process that involves stiffening discarded textile materials with enamel paint to create brittle bone-like material. She then crochets fantastical intertwined skeletons of humans, birds, snakes, devils, and two-headed bats, which are displayed with stark black backdrops, glass cases, and lathed bases that reference old-fashioned displays for scientific specimens.

Her new show, Lazarus Taxa, refers to the paleontological concept of species that disappear and reappear in the fossil record. Lazarus Taxa is currently on display at Paradigm Gallery + Studio. You can also follow her on Instagram.

 

 



Art Craft

Biodiversity Reclamation Suits: Extinct Bird Costumes for Urban Pigeons Crocheted by Laurel Roth Hope

August 15, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Paradise Parrot and Guadalupe Caracara, 2013. Crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequins, walnut stands.

When first engaging with these crocheted bird suits by artist Laurel Roth Hope it’s not without a bit of whimsy and an immediately appreciation for her skill with yarn and needle. The colorful one-of-a-kind sweaters are each designed to fit a standard urban pigeon, complete with a hood retrofitted with eye and beak holes. While the project isn’t without a bit of humor, its warning is particularly dire: each suit represents an extinct bird species and highlights the futility of restoring lost biodiversity. The works are purposely displayed on hand-carved pigeon mannequins to suggest that animals we most abhor are often the ones most capable of thriving within a human-made environment.

Hope has worked as a natural-resource conservator and park ranger, both of which have deeply influenced her artwork that explores themes of environmental harm, extinction, and consumerism. You can see many more of her Biodiversity Reclamation Suits in this gallery.

Concord, 2008. Cotton, silk, bamboo, wool, and acrylic. Blended yarn mannequin: basswood, acrylic paint, gouache, glass, pewter, and walnut.

Seychelles Parakeet, 2015. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Urban Pigeons: Dodo II, 2014. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Passenger Pigeon II, 2014. Crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Carolina Parakeet, 2009. Crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

Carolina Parakeet (detail)

Bachman’s Warbler, 2015. Crocheted yarn, handmade resin pigeon mannequin, walnut stand.

 

 



Art Craft

Crocheted Lace Jewelry Inspired by Organic Specimens

May 15, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Japanese artist Miho Fujita crochets delicate sculptures of organic matter found in forests, turning handmade leaves, berries, and clusters of mushrooms into wearable objects. The works are all created from naturally dyed cotton, Fujita using plants to both inspire and dye her jewelry. You can see more of her crocheted works on her FacebookInstagram, and online store. (via Lustik)

    

 

 



Art Craft

Dried Leaves Crocheted into Delicate Sculptures by Susanna Bauer

May 4, 2017

Christopher Jobson

All photographs by art-photographers.co.uk

At the intersection of thread, leaves, and her steady hands, artist Susanna Bauer (previously here and here) produces miraculous little sculptures that fuse the natural world with the handmade. Her crocheted embellishments stitched into dry leaves introduce unusual patterns or create hybrid “assemblages” of multiple fragments, and at times she adds elements that appear almost naturally occurring.

Bauer says she creates the works as a tribute to nature but also as a mirror to ourselves. “I’m interested in the way we relate to each other, how we are connected and what moves us,” she shares, “what we hold close and what we send out, how our own inner tenderness can give us strength and how every being is beautiful in its individuality and in its dialog with others.”

All of the pieces seen here are part of a new solo exhibition titled Connections that opened today at
Le Salon Vert Gallery in Switzerland.

 

 



Art

Artist Olek Covers a House in Finland with Pink Crochet

September 1, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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First a playground alligator, then an entire locomotive, and now artist Olek reveals an entire two-story house covered roof to floorboards in pink crochet. This new yarn-bombed installation currently stands in Kerava, Finland where Olek worked with a team of assistants to stitch together huge panels of crochet that envelop every inch of this 100-year-old house. Olek shares:

Originally, this building, built in the early 1900s, was the home of Karl Jacob Svensk (1883-1968). During the Winter War 1939-1940, the family fled to evade bombs falling into the yard, but they didn’t have to move out permanently. In 2015, more than 21 million people were forced to leave their homes in order to flee from conflicts. The pink house, our pink house is a symbol of a bright future filled with hope; is a symbol us coming together as a community.

You can see more photos and videos of the pink house on Instagram.

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