dinsdag 24 maart 2009


In the ‘Audax Textiel Museum Tilburg’ is until June 14th, 2009, staged a modest but revealing exhibition on the state of the art of knitting: Knitted Worlds, A Call to Arms. This exhibition by Suzan Rüssler, curator of the same museum marks the threshold of a revaluation of this handicraft, which is in the last decades associated with a rather dull and old fashioned craft, only carried out as pastime by a few not the most fashioned old ladies. As if it had lost all its fashionable vigor what it had had earlier in the seventies of the bygone century.
Knitting had lost its appealing attraction and didn’t feed the imagination of artists or designers any more. Only in social fieldwork and certain feministic groups sometimes, knitting still played a role as a symbol of alliance and solidarity.
In this exhibition, not everything touches the right string, but it marks a shift. As a means of expression, linking in with its rich history and connotations, knitting has it all. It was only recent, when I was at the symposium The Curators in Witte De With (Rotterdam), where I helped out Ann Demeester, director of De Appel (Amsterdam), to cut the thread of her knitting-work, so she could change color and relaxed continue her needle-work while listening to the interview with Seth Siegelaub.So is it or isn’t it a women’s thing? Of course it has a rich history in the arts and crafts movement of the sixties and seventies, where it was eagerly used just because of its connected with social politics and feminism. But it still puts up artistic questions when mixed with actual topics like conservation and sustainability again, which are in the centre of our todays attention. Artists always have had a keen eye for these kind of lines, which like a ‘file rouge’ runs through time. It is a fact that there are even knitting interventions in urban public spaces, like fore instance in last year’s ZXZW festival in Tilburg. Knitting as an act of intervention! I am happily awaiting the New Gorilla Girls, who will pick-up this act of resistance to the bright and shiny male driven art world of the shiny naked steels of Jeff Koons and bling bling armored pieces by Damien Hirsts. These beautiful balaclava’s (Avata's) would come in quite handy and change any act of violence in a smooth and artistic intervention of feminine power. This modest exhibition in Tilburg, reveals this new potent possibility of the gentle power and concentrated attention of this barely by artist and designers forgotten craft: Knitting-it into a New World. We can use some change..., can't we? But don't let it come a Brave New World, like it already is far to much. And what is in the drawers of the table up above, is for you, yourself to discover. It explains the downfall of the 'plastic surgery' after too much of ER and VR of our photo shopped realities and tellies. A man again, this doctor 'Mad-lock'.

letterpress: works shown on the exhibition by Jimini Hignett; Gift for Dr. Matlock and Chrystl Rijkeboer; Avatar Martine/Roël/Anouska.

2 opmerkingen:


Please read our weblog on the exhibition:
Posts by the artist and other interesting stuff!

Anoniem zei

Hi Gust,
the exhibition Knitted Worlds will last some 10 days and it´s just now I discovered your recension I liked very much. As the curator of the exhibition I´m very happy with your positive comment but of course your critical notes made me curious. You wrote that in the exhibition not everything touches the right string. I would be very pleased to know what you are pointing at. Warm regards, Suzan