Yoyoyo!!! So lets take this blog off on a slight tangent, one that I've been planning for some time. You may be interested to see this....
I have started making my first footsteps into the world of crochet art. I studied fine art at University (back in the days of my misspent youth) and ever since I learnt crochet have wanted to start using it as part of my artistic practice (see, I can even use pretentious art lingo, but I'll try to lay off that).
This weekend we had an arts festival in our local area of Cardiff (madeinroath.com). I thought it was a prime opportunity to start showing some of my work, and whenever I've participated in the festival before it has always been fantastic.
What happens during the festival is that, as well as various events going on at galleries and venues around the area, artwork is also shown in 'Open Houses'. Basically, artists open up their houses (or kind members of the community let artists use their houses, as has happened here) and then members of the public come in to have a look. Not only does it make it an interesting and different experience from your conventional gallery setting, but it also gives you a great opportunity to meet and talk to neighbours and local people.
I created a series of spheres that I filled with balloons and hung with invisible thread (or fishing line to you and me), which all revolved around the number 6. I have always been fascinated how when crocheting circles (and most commonly in amigirumi), starting off with what should just be a hexagon shape suddenly turns into something so perfectly round.
Standing below the spheres were these stalagmite style sculptures. Continuing with the '6' theme they were all created using multiples of 6 stitches and hence why there were 12 of them.
They were all made from recycled or reclaimed material (another way of saying junk that was lying around my flat or gathering dust in the loft). They were made from old t-shirts, plastic bags, old rope, string, electrical wire, stereo cables and garden twine. They say you should suffer for your art, and I did - I totally busted up my hand doing these. I wore off the skin on one of my fingers and wrecked my thumb, which is only just starting to feel better (giving crochet a break would probably help it heal quicker - but as if that's gonna happen!).
The reason I hurt my hand so much is that I had to crochet these really tightly so that they would support their own weight. I considered making wire frames to hold them up inside but that seemed like cheating to me. If you're wondering how to crochet with things like t-shirts or plastic bags then just ask Google how to make t-shirt yarn, there are loads of tutorials out there.
Overall it was a great success. I got lots of brilliant feedback, and taking part and seeing other peoples work has rejuvenated my passion for the arts. I have to say massive thanks to Nina and Chris who let me use their house to display my work, and also to Kirsty Foster who also showed her photography work in the house and helped with much of the organising.
So will I continue on this path? Hell yeah! This event was a little bit of a tester for myself to see what I could do for a small scale exhibition, and it has got me thinking bigger and better!!!