Olivia Carle 

“A Container For Your/My Grief” – Yarn

New Hampshire, USA

“Society sets unnecessary and stuffy artistic boundaries all the time. Perhaps it’s restrictions on medium, how to use mediums, or the tools you need before you can even begin. And that’s bullshit. We should do what feels right to us. So, for a while now I’ve been writing with a grammar that serves me, I knit as art, and I often use abstraction to better convey my feelings and ideas.

Most recently I’ve been pressing up against the edge of “acceptable” knitting in my pieces, choosing for the most part to ignore gauge and to choose yarns that speak to me and each other. I want the person encountering my pieces to get lost in their stories, to feel as though they are in another experience. Ignoring gauge as a convention helps me share those wild and intuitive stories, because it frees me to create unusual and unexpected textures, forms, and color combinations.

The yarn I use has been taking me on journeys. The strands themselves lead me from color to color. Each new skein of yarn tells me what I should explore, what it can show me. I am just along for the ride. 

What I have so far in terms of information on this next piece is:

I thought about what, if any, art that I would actually be able to create during this time, and I imagined a container or bag for holding all my sorrow and depression. And I toyed with the idea of creating a “template” so other people could knit their own. For me, it is the process itself of knitting the container which is the actual container for my emotions. But I have other questions I need to ask myself, like what is the power of these containers if we keep them? Is there a certain point at which they would become too heavy to bear? Are they useful coping mechanisms in order to express and work out emotions, or can they also become facilitators of avoidance? Because these are solitary endeavors are they individualistic, or can they be or become communal? Is there power in other people placing physical objects in them?

I know that I will knit an outside and an inside to this container, and I will reinforce the sides and bottom with thick leather. I know that the colors will be dark and brooding with bursts of intensity. That is all I have for now.

Olivia Carle is a queer, non-binary, autistic artist and settler currently living on Eastern Shoshone and Goshute land. She fully committed to her artistic practice over a year ago after realizing that the dribs and drabs of art she tried to squeeze in throughout her life were not enough to sustain her. She creates abstract pieces by working primarily intuitively, and is currently focusing on fiber as a medium. Her work has centered on several themes over the past few years: personal trauma, the land, self-determination, and leftist concepts. 

For more information about the artist, check out: www.sunmoonlitvisions.com