Ten Reasons To Yarnbomb Your Museum
- Knitting makes people relax, they are tricked into thinking they are home.
- Yarnbombing is cheerful, people think they are going to have fun.
- Yarnbombing makes the museum building itself more of an experience.
- Yarnbombing makes sculpture different, thus new.
- Knitting is common and humble, it relaxes the elitism of art.
- Yarnbombing can be done by anyone, it includes everyone in the art process.
- Yarnbombing a museum questions where woman's art belongs.
- Yarnbombing is an event, it’s news, it's social.
- Yarnbombing a museum is low art becoming high art.
- Yarnbombing is a site specific installation disguised as a friendly gesture.
Yarnbombing is the term for making street art with knitting or crocheting.
At first I only yarnbombed the outsides of museums. It was exciting, scary and satisfying to stand outside a museum in the dark and sew knitting to its street fixtures.
Then, one day, that was no longer enough. I wanted to yarnbomb the outside AND the inside of a museum. I thought maybe I could yarnbomb the Oakland Museum of California, it was nearby, it was known for being experimental and I had a friend that worked there.
It turned out the Oakland Museum was perfect, they have a special program called The Oakland Standard devoted to innovative and fresh displays of art for the local community and they had already thought of doing a yarnbombing project.
My knitting is all handspun and hand-knit so this was a huge undertaking. I gathered a crew of super knitters and asked them to help.
The Sonoma Valley Museum of Art YarnbombingThe Sonoma Valley Museum wrote me and asked if I would do a yarnbomb to go with their Holiday show. I countered with the suggestion that I just yarnbomb the whole museum. After several months the educational director Margie Maynard contacted me again and asked me to make a yarnbomb for the museum to go along with their “Color" show. This was a very interesting challenge as we couldn't put anything in the galleries or cafe or hang anything new on the outside of the building. We ended yarnbombing a table, two door handles and a large existing hanging sign. I also knit an (uncommissioned) streetlight right outside the building so that there could be streetart and art. This was put up May 5, 2012.
What does This All Mean?People are amazingly accepting of yarnbombing—in part because they think it’s light entertainment: pretty and pretty silly. Knitting is familiar and comforting. It seems too available to be meaningful. But I think yarnbombing is only disguised as silliness—it's really art. I call yarnbombing a museum “Parallel Art World," because the art isn't on the walls, or in the galleries, it all around you. It's the knitting on the ordinary boring bits of life that you just don't see making them jump and come alive.
All right that's it. Except:
- As a point of interest The Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse had a yarnbombing class April 28 and then put the yarnbombing out in their sculpture garden.
- The Philadelphia Museum of Art commissioned a yarnbomb in May from IshKnits.
- The Tate Museum in London commissioned a yarnbombing last year by Knit The City.
What about it? Have I got you interested in having someone yarnbomb your museum?