Monday, August 17, 2009

Joseph Beuys on multiples

From Joseph Beuys's answer to Schellmann and Klueser's question, why do you make multiples?

"I'm interested in the distribution of physical vehicles in the form of editions because I am interested in the spreading of ideas. [...] For me, each edition has the character of a kernel of condensation upon which many things can accumulate."

Exhibition text, De la Warr Pavilion, Bexhill,
Beuys is here, 4 July to 27 September 2009

Schellman, Jörg and Klüser, Bernd (1970), Interview with Joseph Beuys, in Joseph Beuys: The Multiples, Cambridge, Mass., Minneapolis, and Munich/New York: Harvard University Art Museums, Walker Art Center, and Edition Schellmann, 1997,, retrieved 16.8.2009


"'You are the only woman alive,' claimed an irritated friend, 'who still uses cotton handkerchiefs. Everyone else makes do with Kleenex.' It's nice to be distinguished for something, even if only for the quantity of your laundry. I admit it, they all have to be washed and ironed and stacked in a box, and it's not a very 21st century thing to be doing: if I wanted to be extra-provoking, i could dab them with lavender like a Victorian great-aunt. My excuse is this: I used to be a great weeper. And it's bad enough, in company, to be inexplicably lachrymose and blotchy, without strewing sodden tissues on the ground.

It was never personal setbacks that made me cry [...] it was a view, a prospect, a picture in a museum, or some pin-prick contact with the past - one of those moments, when history dabs out a pointed fingertip and the nail sinks straight through your skin. I have cried in many art galleries, and aroused the suspicion of the curators. [...]

And gradually, the friction of contact with the world thickened my skin and dried my eyes. I didn't cry much after I was 35, but staggered stony-faced into middle age, a handkerchief still in my bag just in case."

Hilary Mantel, The Guardian, 15.8.2009, Review, p.12

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Found Object

A piece of cloth, burnt around the edges, found on a walk through the park - with no more significance, perhaps, other than what can be imagined.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The dangers of knitting

In a story published in the New York Times on 15 March 1908, a train conductor admonishes an old lady engaged in her knitting to pass the time of the journey, telling her that knitting on the train is "against the rules" or, at least to be strongly advised against. He tells the story of one knitter being killed by her steel knitting needle piercing her heart during a train accident she would have survived unharmed had she not been knitting. Another woman, relates to give further weight to his warning, was stabbed through the eye by her knitting needle as the train unexpectedly lurched forward as she was bending over her work.

The lady in the story remains undeterred by this and continues her work. The "Dangers of Knitting and Stitching" however, are real enough, engagingly told by artist Deirdre Nelson in her exhibition of this title.

Frequently used in the performance of home or back street abortions, not unheard of as murder weapons, knitting needles' potential to cause serious harm has also been recognized by airlines banning passenger from carrying them on board of aircrafts.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Knit and crochet with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra

"The DSO has reserved a section of seats at the rear of the Main Floor, reserved just for knitters and crocheters. The price for Sunday afternoon concerts would be $25, normally $49 (you can use the savings to buy more wool!)"

Mapping the Body

"Susan Stockwell creates delicately provocative works in sculpture, drawing, collage and installation.

Mapping the Body, until 7th September 2009, Florence Nigthingale Museum, St Thomas' Hospital, 2 Lambeth Palace Road, London SE1 7EW."
From Selvedge Magazine E-Mail Newsletter, 5.8.2009

Friday, August 07, 2009

Gold, blue & green

"On Sunday, March 19, the third anniversary of the start of the war in Iraq, the congregation and friends of Marble Collegiate Church hung these ribbons on the fence.

Gold ribbons represent our prayers for the family and friends of the thousands of service people who have lost their lives. We continue to add ribbons and names and to pray for the families and friends as more people die.

Blue ribbons represent our prayers for those in Iraq. For the families and friends of the tens of thousands of Iraquis who have lost their lives, and for all those who have been wounded. The toll of human pain and suffering is impossible to measure.

Green ribbons represent our prayers for peace.

We continue to pray daily. We pray for the day that war is no longer an option.

Will you too, pray with us?"

Sign outside Marble Collegiate Church, 29th West Street/5th Avenue, NYC
For photographs, go to

Wedding ribbon

"As people migrated to America, they brought their traditional customs
with them.
Chinese weddings use red, pink, and lavender flowers and ribbons. White
ribbons and flowers are never used because they signify death. Red is
considered good luck at a Chinese wedding; therefore, it is a prominent color
when choosing flowers or decorating."

Found objects - New York City

for textile images of Ellis Island, go to