Yarn Bombing the Latest in Street Art

Yarn bombing, also known as guerrilla knitting, is the latest thing in street art. This art form  uses colorful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn, or fibre, rather than paint or chalk. Yarn bombing’s popularity has spread throughout the world.  While other forms of graffiti may be expressive, decorative, territorial, socio-political commentary, advertising or vandalism, yarn bombing was initially almost exclusively about reclaiming and personalizing sterile or cold public places (source).
Photos above and below are from Yarn Bombing on-line Community.
I have seen yarn bombing interventions in my own neighbourhhod. Often it is where there is a chain link fence or some other unsightly urban reminder. There are yarn bombing community groups that bring together the work of guerrilla artists from all over the world.

Photo Source: Time Photos

Artist Madga Sayeb, ‘bombs’ a bus in Mexico City. As you can see bombing takes time, concentration, and works around the artist’s design strategy.  You can see many of her pieces are in fun but you can certainly see the socio-political commentary on some of her other pieces (see below. Photo Source: Time Photos).  Look forward to hearing more about Madga Sayeb in future blog posts from tina + design.

The first 2 photos are from North Vancouver taken by Graham Smith. The Firefighters add knit cherry blossoms to a tree at Joy Kogawa House in Vancouver, Canada (Photo Source: Time Photos).

The yarn bombed tree, above, on Lonsdale in North Vancouver bears message tags from its creators; proud of their whimsical creation and proud to be part of an artistic community.  To me yarn bombing is a subtler, softer form of subversive art than grafitti.  I like the randomness of the intervention contrasted with the detailed work to execute it.  Unlike graffiti, yarn bombing’s anonymity is somehow personalized by the homespun warmth associated with wool and, in this case, by these hand lettered name tags.  The contrast between public art intervention with the harmless whimsicality of location, form and colour elicits a nuanced, amusing irony.