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Monday, March 10, 2008

When Knitters Go Wild!

Knitters dress up trees for public art - TwinCities.com:
"Wrapped around the trunk is a colorful, crazy-quilt skin made up of panels of yarn knitted individually by residents and visitors alike. Good-luck charms cling to the yarn. Family photos, poems and jokes peek out of knitted pockets.
The art project in this southwest Ohio village, already known for its
offbeat art, has become a conversation piece and even a photo op...
...Knitters around the U.S. are dressing trees, street signs, benches, door handles and other objects.
Last month, residents of Columbus, Ind., knitted cozies for 33 ornamental pear trees that line the city's main street. One tree, called the People Hugger, has knitted arms.
Knitted coverings are showing up on trees and doorknobs in Charleston, W.Va. In Houston, knitters have dressed up park benches, car antennas, telephone poles and beer bottles...."
Okay first I have to commemorate these people on bringing knitting into the news in what can be seen .... at least in this article ... as a quirky positive way.
BUT.....
Why are these people spending time dressing trees when they could be putting these 'tree sweaters' to better use to make blankets for the homeless/disaster victims ... how about knitted teddy bears for kids in hospitals or the 'Teddy bear' programs by EMS agencies around the country that give a teddy bear to kids to help them feel a little better (my son was a recipient of these when he had his eye injury and had to get a couple of surgeries, so it is very dear to my heart) ... what about mittens/scarves for local charities ....
There are so many options for these people ... it is hard for me to see this yarn put onto a tree.

I know that there are many ways in which these sweaters can be beneficial for the trees they are on .... its just that - well - that's not why they were made. They were made for art's sake not because they protect the bark of young trees from harsh winter winds & deer .... not because it makes it possible for young squirrels to climb better .... not because it prevent 'sun burn' of the young bark ... not because it controls limb growth (preventing branches from forming too low) ...
it wasn't for any of that .... it was simply because someone thought it would be cool.

Don't get me wrong. I love art. I really do. Okay .... maybe not the poop on the madonna type of art or the urine in the jar type of art .... but 'real' art, I even like some modern art.
I was amazed once by a sculture of a garbage bag. Yep an artist took a large peice of marble and carved a bag of trash out of it .... but it was so cool how they used the natural patterns of the colors to make it look like things in the bag. The detail was so totally - WOW! It was so much more impressive than the giant octoput plug made of chickenwire & vinyl .... but still I thought 'gee that's still kind of cool'

But knitting on trees?
Yeah its cool. I just think they could have used it better.

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