My final post on being part of lab binaer’s ‘defined by’ city blogging art project: On the final official day of the defined by project the pick of our 41 White Papers, that we six artists had conjured up during the project, were carefully stuck to the Orca-skinned Blue Wall. Glasses of fizzy were poured, piles of White Papers were laid out, and several of us began to feel horribly nervous.
The ‘finnisage’ was here at last. The big hoo ha that would end the defined by project and mean the dismantling of both our fabulous White Wall and the White Room where we’d spent so much of our sleep deprived time.
My final White Paper was a thank you to the lab binaer team. It involved myself, Kaja Marie and Keiko doing this:
To create this:
Plarchie and I also thought it would be an excellent plan to give the LB lads a copy of my Knit the City book in German. It was the least we could do in return for one of most inspiring weeks of our lives. Unfortunately both Plarchie and I discovered that our idea of signing a book with mini ‘Plarchie-style’ portraits proved much more difficult than it sounds. Turning a bunch of real people into ink squiggles is tough.
But we managed it somehow. In fact we were rather pleased with the results. No smudges or anything.
Kaja Marie and I climbed Augsburg’s streeeeetched clock tower for our last auf wiedersehen and peered out over a city sad to say goodbye, full of no sleep, too much beer and an endless parade of White Papers trailing in our memories.
The defined by project and my time in Augsburg had been awe inspiring, terrifying, hilarious, enchanting, uncomfortable, challenging, far too much fun, and utterly magical. I had fallen in love with friends, sights, streets and other people’s art.
It’s difficult to describe what it’s like to be part of something so completely strange and inspiring. defined by shook us by the tired shoulders and pushed us to really live in this city, and our own cities, where ever we were from now on. It’s the kind of project that throws you into a wild state of desperation to live every single minute of your life deliberately.
defined by totally changed the way I looked at what I did with my stitched street art. It swallowed me whole as a nervous sneaky stitcher, chewing me up as a sleep deprived White Paper maker, and spat me out as an artist (something I wasn’t convinced I was when I first arrived) with an overwhelming desire to graffiti knit the world.
I would recommend that every artist where ever they are defines their own city too. It’s your city, people. Make your mark on it and get involved with its people and places. That is a how a city truly lives.
If you’re still confused as to what on earth I was up to in the city of Augsburg then this video, by the talented Jürgen, may shed some light on it. Yup, that’s my giant face at the start. Scary, no?
Who knew all this would come from working in a giant fish tank in the middle of a city I had never heard of?
I’ll end with my very favourite moment in Augsburg. It was totally unplanned, unofficial and possibly rather illegal. If defined by was over and the White Wall on the side of the stadium was to be demolished at sunrise then there was clearly only one thing we could possibly do. I’m so glad someone managed to talk these mysterious figures into it…
Thank yous must to be said along with links to some amazing individuals who are well worth following.
Benni and Martin, lords of lab binaer, you’re a couple of geniuses. Keep it up!
And to the rest of the LB boys Jürgen Branz, Hans-Christian Grimm, Ruud Bijnen (who made the fish tank magically light up with our art), Matthias Lein and Stefan Schleifer, and everyone else who helped us to define the city, you have my endless gratitude. Amazingly talented individuals all.
Lastly to the fantabulous city of Augsburg who let me run about it releasing woolly wild boar into its fountains and planting fibre-based flowers between its cobblestones. Go there, people. Drink their beer, eat their wurst and watch out for those rampaging pigs.
Back to the present now, which just goes to show how busy I’ve been, as Augsburg was two months ago!
Stand by for book launches, Plarchie appearing in some of London’s finest establishments and more graffiti knitting than you can shake a 5mm bamboo knitting needle at. Things are about to get absolutely crazy. Run for the hills while you still can.