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A Social Art: Isabel Berglund's Hand-Knit Sculptures

Workshop in progress

In Bloomington, we're used to seeing the trees yarn-bombed with colorful sheaths during the winter, as charity fundraisers and for a bit of fun during the cold weather. Danish fiber artist Isabel Berglund takes knitting into more challenging artistic frontiers. She hand-knits her sculptures, and creates enormous installations that fill an entire room.

Berglund is in residence at the IU School of Art, Architecture + Design, through October 5, 2017. She is giving lectures and holding workshops with IU students and the Bloomington public, leading them in sessions to hand-knit a large installation called "Home Mask Relations."

Berglund says the workshops that produce the sculptural elements create what she calls "social art" as the knitting turns into time for storytelling and conversation around the sculpture's theme. One project she describes in detail here is "The People's Jumper" - where 50 workshop participants created a sweater with 100 sleeves that they could all wear as a group. In Bloomington, the theme is "home."

Berglund will will talk about her work and career, including past community projects and her current one here in Bloomington, during an Artist Lecture on Wednesday, September 17, from 6-7 pm in room FA015 of the IU Fine Arts Building. She will also be present at the Lotus Art Village, on Sixth Street between Walnut and Washington, on September 29th and at Lotus In The Park, at Third Street Park, on September 30th, to talk about hand-knitted art.

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