Magda Sayeg is a fiber artist who has gained a lot of attention for her knit and crochet yarnbombing work. I mentioned her previously in a list of 10 yarnbombers to follow on Twitter. And her work was featured in the Yarn Bombing crochet book that helped raise awareness of the artistic nature of the craft.
More about crochet artist Magda Sayeg
Magda Sayeg is one of the major leaders in the yarnbombing movement and is the founder of Knitta Please, one of the earliest guerilla knitting groups. She does both knit and crochet work, leading community-based art displays and doing stunning installations in public spaces. Sayeg has gained credibility in the art world, working with leading brands like Etsy and Smart Car. She has been featured in solo exhibits and group shows at the National Gallery of Australia, La Museo des Esposizione in Rome and many other great galleries and museums. She is knittaplease on Facebook and @knittaporfavor on Twitter.
Magda Sayeg’s yarnbombing art
Even if you don’t know her by name, you’ve probably seen Magda Sayeg’s art if you’ve ever read an article on yarnbombing. Here are some of her most outstanding pieces:
Crochet in Sayeg’s art
By all accounts that I can find, Sayeg is primarily a knitter but she does include some crochet in her work, particularly in the form of granny squares. In some cases, she works with a team of stitchers to get her visions complete and this is another way that crochet comes into play in her work. For example, Sayeg recently did a piece for ArtPrize that is a pixelated fabric version of an Eames chair made of up of 5000 1.5″ squares that are both knit and crochet squares:
Another example is her portion of a collaborative project called a Knitted Wonderland, in which she choose to use some Tunisian crochet, a craft that in and of itself kind of blends crochet and knitting and therefore seems perfect for her! Here’s a portion of that with the Tunisian crochet at the top:
Yarnbombing vs Public Art
One of the things that I think we have to discuss if we’re going to talk about Magda Sayeg’s artwork is what is yarnbombing and how does it differ from public art (or does it?) This is a big discussion and you’ll get different viewpoints from different artists. My opinion is that yarnbombing is something that is done without permission, like graffiti. Pieces that are done with permission are public art and comparable to murals (as opposed to graffiti tagging). I think that they both have their place in the art world.
Personally I really like pieces that go beyond yarnbombing and become accepted public art (which is not to say that I don’t like true yarn bombs). I think this gives crochet and female crafting a great place in the art community and in public spaces and I think that there’s a lot of value in that. Magda Sayeg has done yarnbombing and has also become recognized as an artist in the broader community and the art world, and I think that’s just awesome.
Magda Sayeg around the web
- The Knitta, Please website. This is Magda’s site where you can find links to her around the web and some info about her art.
- Knitta blog. A great place to see Magda’s work.
- Knitta Please on Wikipedia
- Gothamist interview with Magda Sayeg
- Magda Sayeg Joins 1stAveMachine
- Magda Sayeg on Oprah.com