Saturday, March 28, 2009

Triennale Design Museum Milan

How lucky we were on Thursday the 26th to be in Milan with the sun shining and a blue sky, on our way to the "Dritto Rovescio" (Knit Purl) exhibition at the Triennale Design Museum (the exhibition runs only until March 29th).Walking from Cadorna station we noticed first a striped, knitted cover on a metal bollard at a pedestirian crossing...

... and then various fibres decorating the fence beside the road...

... and finally, at the entrance to the Triennale, even the bases of the ashtray/rubbish bins had been given a triped, knitted cover...

The eclectic exhibition is "a combination of art and mass creativity, two sides of one single approach envisaging a thread as a starting point to develop a structure having two, three or even endless dimensions......" and is the work of the group Do-Knit-Yourself with contributions from NABA - Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti di Milano (New Academy of Fine Art Milan).

A prominent exhibit is "Family Dress", an installation consisting of 24 garments joined together, developed from knitted and crocheted pieces by students at the Academy of Fine Arts, knitters at Pinè Fidenza Village and Mika Yasuda. The Family Dress has had various outings and can be viewed on - search: family dress, you can find a couple of videos.

Benji Whalen of San Francisco's exhibit "Untitled Barb Wire" was a collection of cotton arms with hand embroidered tattoos, in contrast to the beautiful embroidered books by Sardinian Maria Lai and Geny Lorio from Milan's "Hair worked into cushion lace".

"Counterfeit Crochet" by Stephanie Syjuco was an amazing range of crocheted handbags made by copying models of famous brands.

"Knitted upholstery of the Joe armchair" by Roberta Meloni and Rosetta Corrieri (Pistoia/Italy) was a striped, knitted cover for a hand-shaped armchair.

There was also a range of furniture made from steel frames covered with different fibres, among them crocheted or woven cord, rushes, felted fabric, wire, leather, ribbon and recycled plastic.

A spectacular deep red knitted dress on a hanger by Isreali artist Nelly Agassi, "Israeli Whispers" terminated the exhibition.

A workshop using paper was in progress during our visit. The workshop will be a permanent feature for knitting, embroidery and textile classes.

The above are just a few of the many exhibits, it's a fascinating and inspiring exhibition and was well worth a visit. Look here for pictures.

(Pam Blakey)

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