Sunday, July 02, 2017

The Mother of Yarn Bombing: Magda Sayeg

Magda Sayeg is a textile artist who is considered to be the 'mother of yarn bombing'. Her movement began very organically when she covered the door handle of her boutique with a knit changing it into something that was hand-made, colourful, warm and inviting. In 2005, she founded KnittaPlease - a yarn bombing collective.

Magda in Action |
Sourced from The Guardian
Magda transforms everyday items found in the urban streetscape by covering them with yarn that has been knit or crocheted personalizing a sterile or cold public space with something that is soft, warm and vibrant. She has tapped into something that has struck a chord and has become a world-wide phenomenon. Perhaps it has something to do with the beautification of urbanity; perhaps it is seeing something handmade and colourful in unexpected spaces or perhaps it is the idea of the warmth and tactile nature of yarn in this temporary artform against the cold, hard and permanency of concrete and steel.

There is a transformation that occurs when I cover an inanimate object with soft hand-made material. This interaction changes the object without taking away its identity or paralyzing its original function. It is this unplanned arrangement of the material that makes these objects come to life, become sculptural and even redefine or reinterpret a space. The exploration of environmental change drives me: provoking the world to be a more challenging, uncon-ventional, and interesting place.

Groovy Bus | Mexico City, Mexico
The simple juxtaposition of this woven material placed within an urban environment has inspired a new generation of knitters who no longer view function as the sole purpose for knitting. This new approach to knitting questions the assumptions of a traditional craft while adding a previously unused material to the world of street art.

Knitted Stairs | Sydney, Australia | Photo Magda Sayeg
Milan | Photo Magda Sayeg
Her work has evolved over to include art installations that will be covered under a future blog post.

Check out her TedTalk: How yarn bombing grew into a worldwide movement.

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