To commemorate the project for posterity, I sent one sweater off to the National Coalition for the Homeless. Megan Hustings, the Director of Development, and I have been in correspondence over the past year and a half regarding the project and any proceeds that could be directly attributed to the finding of the sweaters. The letter outlines the completion of the project on my part and thanks the organization for letting ARTivention sponsor them for this collective endeavor. And while Megan has been keeping up with the blog, now she will have a sweater in person to look at and be reminded of all of us who have knitted and placed a sweater around the country in support for the organization and its mission.
Category Archives: Fiber Art
One of my favorite things to do is to visit knitting/yarn shops while traveling the country. Mostly, I like to pet the fibers and any person who works with yarn understands the need for this activity. And, best of all, this store also had a posting spot for announcements, causes and news. In the background, the words “challenge, change, cure” aptly fits the theme of this project. If you happen to be passing through Evanston any time soon, I encourage you to stop by Close Knit and see if the sweater is still there as well as pet the luxurious silk, mohair, wool skeins that adorn the interior!
Ideally, I was looking to place this book alongside several authors who promote the use of “craftivism” whether in knitting, crochet, quilting or any of the more craft oriented media. This book store only had one book that I could locate within the short span of time I had to take this image, so I placed sweater #201 next to the book Craft Hope in an attempt to catch someone’s attention. While I am not familiar with this particular text, I can fully support the ambition of all of us makers in making the world a better place and encouraging sharing of knowledge and resources in order to get it done.
While in the same shopping area as where the previous sweater was placed, I visited a local booth that showcases artists and artisan works that are normally presented during the farmer’s market during the summer months. The wonderful store clerk invited me to place the sweater at the store as it makes a great addition to the wonderful hand spun and natural dyed yarns by Wanowa Studio. I can’t wait to incorporate some of this beautifully hand dyed wool into a sweater soon. During the conversation, I was also given information regarding a wool festival that takes place during the summer in Flagstaff. While this project aims to raise awareness of social issues related to homelessness, it also encompasses the importance of sharing information and what can happen as a result of vocalizing interests, passions and concerns. This project has provided many opportunities to connect with fellow knitters, spinners, weavers, activists and supporters that for me would otherwise not be possible.
Three of these six sweaters were actually given to a person directly upon her inquiry into what I was knitting as I often have a knitting bag attached to me at all times just in case I get a few seconds to be productive. So, in peculiar places like doctor’s offices, bookstores, soccer games and such, I am able to promote the project, interact with people about the issue and offer something tangible in return. In this case, the woman offered to pay me directly for the sweaters as she was correlating my work to a viable product (yeah! doesn’t happen much to us artists). Instead, I reminded her to make a donation to the National Coalition for the Homeless. The other three sweaters are in Rock Hill, SC and will be a part of a graffiti knitting event Nov. 11-13 in conjunction with Gallery UP, so if you are in Rock Hill, look out for a miniature sweater!
So it finally happened. I forgot to post a sweater that I had placed some time ago, but here it is finally! This guy was placed back in August towards the end of the month and at one of the picnic tables in the Farmer Education building at ASU in a splendid courtyard that every building should have on campus. As the educational site of future educators, the placement of this sweater made me think of the dilemmas that face children who have no permanent home. It also reminded me of how the access to quality affordable education is one of the most unique and important features of our American identity. Education allows for the growth of an educated populace, expansion of middle class and development of innovative strategies that contribute to the advancement of our country as a leader. Hopefully, this little sweater will help broaden people’s awareness of the issues that individuals struggle with in finding affordable housing.
Okay, so I have to say, the plethora of golf courses around the immediate vicinity of my home is quite impressive. Especially since it is a desert. To see such artificially sustained environments is such a stark contrast to the natural environment of browns, pale greens and rust colors that cover the mountains of the valley. And what’s even more astonishing is to see how many people use these golf courses throughout the insane heat of the summer. This too will be a frequented site for future sweaters as I investigate other public sites around the valley.
Knitted object #17 was placed on the corner of Van Buren and State St. in Chicago. The small little triangle of green space is surrounded by tall buildings and the “L” tracks and made an ideal location for the sweater. Upon placement, the gentleman sitting behind the tree in the photo turned around and examined the object. I didn’t stay too long to see if he collected the sweater, but it was great to see someone engage with the work. I would like to further explore this idea by placing the object in several different types of locations to see who does and doesn’t respond immediately. For example, the people at the arch in St. Louis acted as if they didn’t see it. Was this a result of living in a more suburban or rural environment versus an urban one? Further comments to follow!
Sweater 12 was placed on a bench in the “arts district” of Oak Park, right off of Harrison and Lombard. The benches are across the street from a popular cafe and yoga place and immediately next to a gallery, so it was a fitting place for the sweater. I stopped by early this morning and it was gone. Do you think squirrels wear sweaters?
Item #11 was placed on top of a newspaper box in front of the CTA Ridgeland Green Line station on Tuesday afternoon, about the time that the high school students are milling about and waiting for the next bus. I didn’t notice the graffiti until I looked at the photo when I returned. Hoping to find other interesting backgrounds for future sweaters.