The first large scale sculpture I have made was inspired by the work of Superblue and their giant public knitting nancy’s. In University Ulster our knitting tutor also loved their work and commissioned two knitting nancy’s approx. 150cm diameter to be made for our department (seen above). I love these over-sized children’s knitting toys, they are fantastic and great food for thought; the main challenge I felt when approaching what to create from them was finding a yarn thick enough to keep the amazing structure created by this technique of construction.
Not quite sure whether I wanted to make a functional piece or an object I just let the piece evolve from the process of recycling, collecting and knitting. The bags were collected from all around UU, and from family and friends, it expresses a sense of my community as it was a piece dependent on the donations of my peers. I enjoyed collecting the bags and the conversations that resulted from describing what I wanted to achieve, and why I started my concentration on recycling/collecting, finding that I am one of many who can’t bear to make something re-useable rubbish.
Keeping the playfulness of the over-sized children’s toy in mind, I’d like to think that this process could work eventually to create some kind of recycled jungle-jim. The plastic bag knit is surprisingly strong and soft, if suspended correctly and if enough bags could be collected, a bigger scale project could be perfect to create a playscape.