New York Entangled In Yarn Graffiti

5058097151_67d198ca0eThe New York Times reports on “yarn bombing”, the softest, coziest form of urban vandalism. Leave your bike parked for too long and it could end up like the one at right, which has been chained for months in front of my friend’s store:

“Street art and graffiti are usually so male dominated,” Ms. Hemmons said. “Yarn bombing is more feminine. It’s like graffiti with grandma sweaters.”

Yarn bombing takes that most matronly craft (knitting) and that most maternal of gestures (wrapping something cold in a warm blanket) and transfers it to the concrete and steel wilds of the urban streetscape. Hydrants, lampposts, mailboxes, bicycles, cars — even objects as big as buses and bridges — have all been bombed in recent years, ever so softly and usually at night.

It is a global phenomenon, with yarn bombers taking their brightly colored fuzzy work to Europe, Asia and beyond. In Paris, a yarn culprit has filled sidewalk cracks with colorful knots of yarn. In Denver, a group called Ladies Fancywork Society has crocheted tree trunks, park benches and public telephones. Seattle has the YarnCore collective (“Hardcore Chicks With Sharp Sticks”) and Stockholm has the knit crew Masquerade. In London, Knit the City has “yarnstormed” fountains and fences. And in Melbourne, Australia, a woman known as Bali conjures up cozies for bike racks and bus stops.

Sometimes called grandma graffiti, the movement got a boost, and a manifesto, in 2009 with the publication of the book “Yarn Bombing: The Art of Crochet and Knit Graffiti,” by Mandy Moore and Leanne Prain, knitters from Vancouver, Canada.

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  • SF2K01

    Now this graffiti I would not mind. It’s comparable to the people who go out and paint murals on the sides of random building. Very pleasant, not disgusting or stupid or gang related. They probably should get paid or recognized for having made it in the first place.

  • Anonymous

    Now this graffiti I would not mind. It’s comparable to the people who go out and paint murals on the sides of random building. Very pleasant, not disgusting or stupid or gang related. They probably should get paid or recognized for having made it in the first place.

  • reubenavery

    Fucking hipsters…

    • http://drwho.virtadpt.net/ The Doctor

      Would you rather they tagged the windscreens of cars with hydrofluoric acid (like Serge used to do)?

  • Anonymous

    Fucking hipsters…

  • http://drwho.virtadpt.net/ The Doctor

    You see this once in a while in Pittsburgh and DC – right now it’s rare.  It’s a familiar sight in Portland, OR.

  • Anonymous

    You see this once in a while in Pittsburgh and DC – right now it’s rare.  It’s a familiar sight in Portland, OR.

  • Anonymous

    Would you rather they tagged the windscreens of cars with hydrofluoric acid (like Serge used to do)?

  • Kathryn Pace

    Terrific.  Now it’s only a matter of time until I’m tripping over goddamned cloned cats and cloned-cat droppings on my way to the bus . . .

    http://www.disinfo.com/2011/05/first-cloned-cat-turns-ten-years-old/

  • Kathryn Pace

    Terrific.  Now it’s only a matter of time until I’m tripping over goddamned cloned cats and cloned-cat droppings on my way to the bus . . .

    http://disinfo.com/2011/05/first-cloned-cat-turns-ten-years-old/

  • Maryann

    It has me thinking of a yarn bombing in my city, we will see

     

  • Maryann

    It has me thinking of a yarn bombing in my city, we will see

     

  • CDove

    saw this one in january. 

  • CDove

    saw this one in january. 

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