THIRD DRAFT: YARN BOMBING SAVANNAH

Here is the third draft. I am going to work on it for a bit, then step away for a few hours. My mind usually becomes muddled with ideas and the article seems to take a stroll down boring avenue.

 

THIRD DRAFT: YARN BOMBING SAVANNAH

Under the moonlight, equipped with doughnuts, twine, and pre-made 9×9 vibrant crochet squares, you could see knitters delightfully attaching their creations to old signs and bike racks.

The top secret location had just been revealed 23 hours ago at the local coffee shop as the yarn bombing team united for the last time at Green Truck Pub in downtown Savannah at 6am. This particular yarn bombing was the brainchild of Jessica Leigh Lebos, writer and art enthusiast.

“I knew if I ever had the chance, I would do a yarn bombing.” Lebos said, “I’m very passionate about public art.”

Public art is always the topic with Matt Hebermehl and his collaborator, James “DrZ” Zdaniewski who cofounded the art organization called See Savannah Art Walls or SeeSAW, for short, and are the sole reason public art is permitted in Savannah. After public art enthusiast were punished with fines after their creations went up, Hebermehl and Zdaniewki worked with Metropolitan Planning Commission to create a mural ordinance and policy. The mural policy was approved in late 2011.

When Savannah locals have an open spot on their property that they would like to display public art, they know who to contact and being friends for quite some time, Habernehl presented the opportunity to Lebos. She gleefully took over the area to facilitate her creative intentions, yarn bombing.

After the preliminaries of locations and logistics were in place, Lobos began her quests to find knitters keen to her idea.

“I am actually the world’s worst knitter. That’s what makes this project so amazing,” Lebos said

The Facebook page, Savannah’s First Ever Crowd sourced Yarn Bomb, was created. Lebos patiently waited for the buzz to filter its way through social media and when creators of all ages contacted the Facebook page wanting to help, the group decidedly met every Thursday.  

For over a month strangers and friends swapped crocheting techniques over wine and tea. At every gathering, more and more polychromatic crochet square were added to the basket.

“It’s amazing what happens when one person inspires others to come together and create!” Star Kowtoski, owner of ART POP Balloons said.

The act of crocheting and knitting unexpected pieces for public display has been coloring the city streets for about a decade. Yarn bombing is a type of public art that involves covering anything from trees to telephone poles with acrylic yarn.

The New York Times read, “Yarn bombing takes that most matronly craft (knitting) and the most maternal of gestures (wrapping something cold in a warm blanket) and transfers it to the concrete and steel wilds of urban streetscape.

Considered by many to be the mother of yarn bombing , Magda Sayeg, says her interest started on a slow, drab day in 2005 at her shop in Houston. She knitted a blue-and-pink cozy for the shop’s door handle and it grabbed people’s attention.  Fast-forward seven years and Sayeg is still at it, but with more ambitious projects that include covering buses and cars with yarn.

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 , the public art of yarn bombing quickly found its niche.

The Andy Warhol Bridge, located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is considered the largest yarn bombings in the US. The bridge received a knitted makeover with more than 1,800 knitters and 600 colorful blankets of city landmarks showcasing knitted or crocheted masterpieces. When the public art was removed, the blankets were given a fresh wash and then were donated to different charities around the community.

While Lebos Savannah’s First Crowd sourced Yarn Bomb won’t be able covering bridges anytime soon, her message is still clear about public art.

“When you are out and you see some something unexpected on a wall, it makes you think differently about where you live. Makes you think they are mischievous people out there that want to take life creatively.”

 

 

 

 

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