Archives for posts with tag: crochet

Thanks to Tali Weinberg, one of our talented Resident Artists, for compiling a list of “must see” shows in and around the NYC area (plus a few more we want to see):

Master of the Blue Jeans, Didier Aaron Gallery, through February 4

Charles LeDray: workworkworkworkwork, Whitney Museum, through February 13

Convergence, Lumenhouse, through February 15

Balenciaga: Spanish Master, Queen Sofia Spanish Institute, through February 19

Kashmir Shawls at the Bruce Museum, through Feb 27th (Greenwich, CT)

Colors of the Oasis: Central Asian Ikats, Textile Museum, Washington DC, through March 13th (quick road trip anyone?)

AKWAABA: Weaving Unity Between Bonwire and Staten Island, Sung Harbor Cultural Center, Staten Island, through April 3rd

Art/Memory/Place: Commemorating the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, Grey Gallery at New York University, through July 9 (closed March 27-April 11)

Knoll Textiles 1945-2010, Bard Graduate Center, May 18-July 31

Objects of Exchange: Social and Material Transformations on the Late 19th Century Northwest Coast, Bard Graduate Center, through April 17

Sergej Jensen, PS1, through May 2

The Global Africa Project, Museum of Art and Design, through May 15

Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, March 18-June 5

Rugs and Ritual in Tibetan Buddhism, Metropolitan Museum of Art, through June 26

A Stitch in Jewish Time: Provocative Textiles, Hebrew Union College Galleries, through June 30th

Have other recommendations? Let us know!

As most of you, I stayed snowed in yesterday, after an epic failed attempt to get to work. Biggest snowstorm since 1996, that’s what they say. It was a little bit of a frustrating day since I couldn’t get any work done – no internet, no right knitting needles, … However, each time that I’d look through my window, I couldn’t help to smile. Snow crystals, snow flakes, snow, snow mountains, snowed streets and cars.. Snow is so pretty!

And it made me remind of one of the first Abigail Doan‘s works I came across and that I truly loved, the Snowed Crocheted series.

Abigail Doan, Crocheted Snow 01, 2005

Abigail Doan, Crocheted Snow 03, 2005

Abigail Doan, Crocheted Snow 08, 2005

(photos courtesy of Abigail Doan)

I really love how the fine crochet work complements the delicate balance of the snow flakes on the branches. And just how simple and really beautiful it is.

And then, with my mind set on snow-y textiles, I started remembering the lovely white felted yurt, by Janice Arnold, at the Fashioning Felt exhibition at the Cooper Hewitt on Spring/Summer 2009. I went to see the exhibition on the opening night and it was crowded, but I remember coming back several times to this room and just stare at the walls and ceiling. The felt work is really complex and intricate, but expelling such a peaceful aura. Just like snow.

Janice Arnold, Palace Yurt, Site specific installation at the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design, 2009

(photo courtesy of Apartment Therapy)

Janice Arnold, Palace Yurt, site specific installation at the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design, 2009

(photo courtesy of Janice Arnold)

And finally, ended my snowy textiles dream with the installation piece World Wide Web, by Shane Waltener, commissioned for the exhibition Radical Lace and Subversive Knitting, at the Museum of Art and Design, New York, in 2007. I moved to New York 2 years too late, but I’d love love love to have seen this one live.

Shane Waltener, A World Wide Web, 2007

(photos courtesy of Shane Waltener)


Hope you had a nice and cozy snowed in day!

Last winter I bought one of the ever-popular eternity scarves. I searched and searched on Etsy for the right thing (Of course it had to be unique. No H&M crap for me…) Finally, I came across Yokoo — who continues to be a fave Etsy seller for her product and styling.

And almost the same day that my new Nantucket Scarf arrived in the mail, I came across the NY Times article featuring the seller, talking about making the transition to turning her craft into a profit. Upon searching, I realized via Vice Magazine, that I’d been missing out on Yokoo all of 2009!

I took particular interest in this, as we had just gotten started with Textile Arts Center, and had a main goal of helping folks to make these kinds of transitions, whether they were sick of the office life or had lost their job, or maybe just needed a new creative outlet.

So, why the tangent back to Yokoo’s rise to popularity in 2009? Because we are having a Warm Weather Gear class, and her items are entirely classic, beautiful, relevant inspiration for Winter 2011!

(all photos courtesy Yokoo)

Join us for Crochet 101: Warm Weather Gear on Tuesdays, 6:30-9PM January 4 – 25.

When you make it yourself, it will last beyond seasonal trends.

Too busy? Then we support you supporting Yokoo. : )

Some weekends ago Owyn and I attented to the October New York Handweavers Guild meeting, featuring Adrienne Sloane‘s “Knitting the Political Landscape” lecture, in which she covered “works by artists and activists who are helping to change the landscape of knitting art” as well as her own art work.

Adrienne Sloane – Truth to Power (detail)

(image from

Amongst the several exciting knit/crochet artists that Adrienne presented, we came across with the work of Ruth Marshall and her tiger pelts.

Ruth Marshall is an artist in residency at the Museum of Art and Design, in New York and is currently working on her Tiger Pelt Project. In this project, Ruth has been knitting live size tiger pelts, based on the actual tiger pelts collection of the American Museum of Natural History and data from wild tigers being studied by scientists.

Tiger Cub, knitted yarn, 2010

(image from, photo and art by Ruth Marshall)

“Through studying actual pelts that were collected from 1944 onwards to live wild tigers captured by photographs, I hope to trace the history and stories behind these amazing tigers that are facing the threat of extinction today.” (in

Ruth has been working with animals for a while. After graduation she joined the exhibit/graphic & design team of the Wildlife Conservation Society of the Bronx Zoo, and she worked there as an exhibition sculptor for more than 12 years.  This experience gave her the opportunity to study a world class animal collection and to learn about conservation strategies related to endangered species. (

Some of her previous projects include series of pelts from other cats species, like jaguars and leopards, and a series of 68 knitted coral snake skins. All knitted pelts and skins are a faithful and detailed reproduction of the principal characteristics of the species, like colors, stripes, …

Gold Jaguar, knitted yarn bamboo and string, 2007

(photo by Maja Kihlstedt)

(Artist: Ruth Marshall, Courtesy of Dam,  Stuhltrager Gallery)

Clouded Leopard (from the Small Cat Series),  hand knit wool yarn, wooden frame, twine, 2009
(photo by Maja Kihlstedt)

(Artist: Ruth Marshall, Courtesy of Dam,  Stuhltrager Gallery)

Coral Snake Series, 2006, exhbited at Dam, Struhltrager Gallery, Brooklyn

(photo by Maja Kihlstedt)

(Artist: Ruth Marshall, Courtesy of Dam,  Stuhltrager Gallery)

” My art is related to and bound by a fascination with animals. In essence the work is a synthesis of concepts relating to wildlife conservation and visually interpreting natural animal forms. Exploring the precarious balance of our relationship to nature reacquaints us with an exotic world that we are in danger of losing with all the inherent drama of that loss fueling a search for survival.” (

In a society that keeps acknowledging the use of animal pelts as a Fashion need when the cold days come, these awesome uber-detailed knitted pelts and skins should be a reminder for all of us of the need to preserve these species. And, that real animal pelts are way more beautiful when seen “live and alive”.

Ruth Marshall was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia. She got her  BA in sculpture and printmaking at Phillip Institute of Technology, and in 1995  her M.F.A in sculpture at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. Her work has been featured in multiple exhibitions, throughout the USA and internationally, and in several publications.

With his signature sculpture dress in white Johan Ku is a force to be reckoned with.  Born in Taipei, Taiwan Ku began as a graphic designer when he was only 17 years old.  Since then he has gone on to get a masters in fashion and textile design, move to London where his studio is based, and win a series of awards for his designs and style.

In an interview conducted by extracted these great insights into Ku’s philosophy on fashion and life:

NOTHING INSPIRES KU LIKE… Interesting textiles or yarns. He often get inspired by new materials. It’s not only an important element of his design process, but also a starting point for Ku’s collection.

KU HOPEs… He can live on an isolated island with only someone whom he loves.

CULTURAL INFLUENCES… Can affect people’s minds imperceptibly. They also represent where and who we are in the world.

KU GOT WHERE HE IS… Thanks to Ku’s commitment to hard work. Also, the support from friends and family can be the best encouragement in such a competitive industry.

FASHION CAN SOMETIMES… Can make Ku feel bored and superficial, on the other hand, it can sometimes impress him in a very positive way.

MONEY MAKES… Many things possible and often makes many things complicated. We cannot live without money, but it would be really sorrowful if we lived only for it.

CREATIVITY COMES FROM… Studying in a certain field for a very long time. It comes from rational development rather than a mythical emotion.

KU HAS NEVER… Taken any kind of drugs in his life, and Ku am not a smoker either. He doesn’t want to do anything that could damage his health, no matter how exciting it may seem.

His most recent collection Emotional Structure won the Avant-Garde Award of Gen Art Style  last year.  And with the chilly months swiftly approaching us I cannot help but imagine that I am lounging by my ridiculously large fireplace with a martini draped in one of these goddess gowns.

Reminder:  The Cutting Edge Artist Talk is this Friday (October 8th) at 7:30pm.  We have 8 artists lined up and the curator Joetta Maue will be present.  For more information please refer to our website.  We hope to see you there.

Because of Fashion Week the Textile Arts Center’s blog has been consumed with fashion. However, with our Grand Opening party quickly approaching and the opening of our first gallery exhibition, Cutting Edge: A Celebration of Fiber, it is time to get back to the forward-thinking art.  One artist whose work spans over the past 16 years immediately came to mind.

I came across Joana Vasconcelos one day when I googled fiber art.  One of the first pictures to pop up was a piece called Piano Dentelle (2008) which is a hand crochet piano and stool.  Of course I was immediately drawn to it being a woman of music.  It just looks so dainty, like those piano fortes that were used in the time of Mozart.  I just want to run my fingers across the ivory.

This artist doesn’t stop at just pianos; she covers literally every surface imaginable with beautiful crochet covers.  I wish I could put more of her beautiful snakes up on this, but I’ll leave a little mystery so you will go out and check out her amazing website.

(Yes, it is a urinal.)

Joana was born in Paris and now lives and works in Lisbon.  Her creative process is based on the appropriation, decontextualization, and subversion of pre-existent objects and everyday realities.  From this process she derives a conversation of contemporary idiosyncrasies: hand-crafted/industrial, private/public, tradition/modernity, and popular culture/erudite culture.

Her materials range all over the spectrum of materials, some materials you wouldn’t even suspect…like pots, zip-ties, and tampons.

Marilyn 2009 (Materials: Pots and Pot Lids)

The Bride 2001 (Material: Tampons)

Wives 2005 (Material: Zip Ties)

Sugar Baby 2010 (Materials: Plastic Sand Moulds, Stainless Steel)

Mr. Wine 2010 (Material: Wrought Iron)

And remember, the Textile Arts Center’s Grand Opening party and Cutting Edge:A Celebration of Fiber are both this Friday September 17th from 8pm-11pm.  Music, food, beer, wine, and great textile art.  (Suggested donation of $20.00)