Yarn Bombing Yarn bombing, also known as knit graffiti, guerilla knitting, yarn storming, urban knitting, or graffiti knitting is a movement created that accessorizes, or “softens” the hardscape of urban environments. This eccentric movement was started by Magda Sayeg, who in 2005 wanted to enhance the look of her Houston boutique by knitting a custom cozy for the shop’s door. Since then, Sayeg has been yarn bombing everything from cars to trees to parking meters. Yarn bombing has gained popularity over the years and is now an international movement that is embraced by crochet and knitting artists of all ages, nationalities, and genders. Its practitioners create stunning works of art out of yarn, then “donate” them to public spaces as part of a covert plan for world yarn domination. Participants of this movement often describe yarn bombing as a way to add a touch of whimsy and warmth to the built environments we all share. It also creates new opportunities, new knitting designs, and opens up new ventures for experimentation. There are patterns for hats, sweaters and socks but none for bike racks, fences, statues and bridges. Participants declare they do it because it’s fun and it makes people happy, and as knitters, there is something challenging and interesting about knitting for something public. Last year, yarn bombers participated in the first International Yarn Bombing Day on June 11th. Though yarn bombing is embraced by many, it is a somewhat controversial movement. Occasionally, yarn bombing is considered vandalism or littering. Still, the police seem to tolerate it. Yarn bombers say they rarely have run-ins with the law. And in the few instances when they are stopped, yarn bombers say, the police are more likely to laugh at them than issue a summons. Whether yarn bombing is an art form or graffiti is still debatable, it all depends on who you ask. Those who consider it art, argue that it is not defacing or permanent, while those who see it to be graffiti argue that it violates property. The VAC yarn bombing project will be on display through May 2nd. After then, the VAC will properly deinstall and dispose of the used yarn. If you would like to learn more about this unconventional art movement, please attend the public lecture tonight, hosted by VAC. Magda Sayeg will be speaking about today’s installation, her approach to yarn bombing, and more about the art this evening at 6 pm.
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