Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

by Kathryn on January 31, 2011 · 13 comments

in Crochet Artists

Joana Vasconcelos is a working artist who enjoys creating art in many different mediums. I like several of the different things that she’s done but of course it is her crochet art that has captured my interest most. All of her work, including her crochet work, weaves together themes of womanhood, femininity, strength, and societal roles. This art challenges people to look at what defines women and women’s art and to question any assumptions made about those things. I think that this is an important issue for crochet artists today since crochet is typically considered a woman’s craft and may not be given equality in the art world despite its popularity in culture and fashion.

About Crochet Artist Joana Vasconcelos

  • According to the bio on her website, Joana Vasconcelos was born in Paris in 1971 but moved to Portugal where she now does her artwork. She studied visual art at the college level. Her website shows a portfolio of her work dating back as far as 1994.
  • Vasconcelos gained a lot of media attention a few years back when she made a stunning chandelier out of tampons. The work was actually quite intriguing even though it’s not what I’m most interested in from her portfolio.
  • Much of the crochet work that she has done is large scale. Lovely Textiles points out that it has its roots in sculpture art. She has even been calledthe sculptress of crochet”. One of her methods is that she takes sculptures and covers them in crochet.
  • There are two main factors that make Vasconcelos’ exhibition engaging and exciting. One is the technical skill involved in her magical enveloping of cotton crochet, the other, is the eclectic taste for different materials: from fabric to ceramic, to plastic, tiles and rubber.” (source)
  • She also uses the crochet work to draw the viewer in (it’s often said that the average person spends about 30 seconds in front of a piece of art). According to Joana, “Handcraft gives you three things: time, repetition, and then, when things are repeated over and over again, they become abstract.” She thinks of the crochet as a drawing or pattern on the work.” (source)

Examples of Joana’s crochet art

The crochet art that I first noticed was her work using crochet doilies. I found it interesting because white doilies are such a stereotypical object representing the outdated culture of crochet. In other words, that’s what we think of asgrandma’s crochet”. And yet, Vasconcelos pairs this with objects that aren’t old (like computers) or feminine (like bulls) for a really intriguing effect. Take a look:

Picture 3 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

el matador 2007 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

joana vasconcelos  6 600x557 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

I also enjoy the sculptures that she does that include crochet work over them that aren’t in the form of just white doilies:

5780173 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

She also has some interested felted and wool work. It’s not necessarily all crochet work but it’s in the same family. The colors are what attracts me to these pieces:

joanavasconcelos Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

Vasconcelos Valquiria4 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

Question of the day

Vasconcelos urges us to take thewomen’s craftof crochet seriously as an art form. What are your thoughts about this issue?

pinit fg en rect gray 28 Amazing Crochet Artist: Joana Vasconcelos

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  1. [...] of the first crochet artists that I profiled on this site was Joana Vasconcelos. She is probably best known for her stunning large works (like pianos) covered in white doilies, [...]

  2. [...] Joana Vasconcelos made this stunning mixed-media piece in 2010; right now it’s hanging in Château de Versailles where the artist is the first female artist to show contemporary work. The artist says that this piece ishandmade woollen knitting and crochet, industrial knitted fabric, fabrics, ornaments, polyester, steel cables” … I say it’s awesome! [...]

  3. [...] Dauphin et La Dauphine. This is the classic crochet work that Vasconcelos seems to be known forcovering items in white or black doily-style [...]

  4. [...] artist that I profiled during this week in 2011 was Joana Vasconcelos. She’s such an amazing talent. In 2012 she became the first female artist to show at the [...]

  5. [...] Joana Vasconcelos is one of my favorite crochet artists. This is due mostly, of course, because I find her work striking. However it also has to do with the quality of her career; Joana’s work is seen internationally in amazing exhibitions and this is good for the entire crochet community to have our craft seen on such a large scale. She is part of a large multi-artist exhibit in Jerusalem that I so wish I could see in person! [...]

  6. [...] Joana Vasconcelos is one of my favorite crochet artists. This is due mostly, of course, because I find her work striking. However it also has to do with the quality of her career; Joana’s work is seen internationally in amazing exhibitions and this is good for the entire crochet community to have our craft seen on such a large scale. She is part of a large multi-artist exhibit in Jerusalem that I so wish I could see in person! [...]

  7. [...] Crochet Concupiscence. [...]

  8. […] crochet artist Joana Vasconcelos has a new solo exhibit opening on March 31st in Brazil. this follows exhibits in Jerusalem, the […]

  9. […] Joana Vasconcelos is represented by Galerie Nathalie Obadia, Paris/Brussels and Casa Triângulo, São Paulo at Art Basel Hong Kong, from 15 to 18 May […]

  10. […] for the film Joana Vasconcelos: Time Machine whichdocuments the artist’s most ambitious exhibition ever to be realized in the UK, following the whole processsince […]

  11. […] Joana Vasconcelos has already her work featured in a number of shows this year […]

  12. […] @inspirationgrid did a post showcasing the crochet-covered sculptures of Joana Vasconcelos […]

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