Friday, September 21, 2012

melissa maddonni haims Yarn Bombing -oooOO ahh ohhh....

this is called breast strokes.....
originally created in 2010 for a show whose focus was on breast cancer awareness month.
ps. since my mom died of breast cancer on january 7, 2008.
she taught me how to knit and crochet a number of times during my life, but it really stuck right before she died. 
read: i've never really created anything with needles or hooks until 2007.
and without her i probably never would have. 

i have always had a very deep respect for transformative art. i am inspired by those who can take materials from their immediate environment and create or capture a moment that brings forth joy. Melissa Madonna Haims was born and raised in norristown pennsylvania. her father was an excavating contractor which entails digging and preparing sites for construction. her mother Theresa Maddoni was a craft artist. in fact both her paternal and maternal grandparents worked with fabrics in the context of knitting, crochet and sewing. hence, Melissa growing up had been influenced by creativity. as a young adult she studied at the Parsons school of Design where she received a degree in fine arts and marine affairs. she has worked in new York for several years as an established installation artist. this role would entail going to a gallery space and transforming the space with art. she also had a long standing career as an Interior Designer for the carpet industry managing large accounts in the states and abroad within corporate sector. not too long ago her mother passed away and she began to work on her unfinished knitting projects. diligently one by one as her mother’s spirit quietly guided her. one day she wasn't quite sure what to do ...with one of her mother’s projects and she decided she would make something else. maybe the piece became a soft sculpture or a component to a mixed media fixture ...melissa was evolving and had progressed as a fiber artist. she began working with fibert art genres described as; yarn bombing which involves crocheting or knitting on existing public or private structures, hyperbolic crochet entails applying a mathematical approach to crochet patterns, mixed media pieces and soft sculpture. melissa is an active member of the 3rd street gallery, a cooperative gallery in old city. she is on the executive team for Fiber Philadelphia 2012, a city wide festival exploring the fiber arts. currently melissa has made a shift and is working as an independent artist. this allows her to spend more time with her daughter and husband and though she truly enjoyed working as an employee, there has become such a demand for her art work that she must focus on writing grants, securing commissions and building her business. i see symbolism in the act of yarn bombing ....visualize and actively bring your dreams to life. karimu abena hamilton


knit graffitti

Friday, September 14, 2012


vintage influence with afro fusion 
do you know about the african goddess? Ok there is  the european goddess,the indian goddess, the asian goddess,the american goddess,  the  african american goddess to name a few.... and then there the the African Goddess. depending on the region there will be variances or differences but there is a characteristic of the African Goddess that is finite. .powerful. you can  reference contemporaries such as  iman, issa rae  les nubians , ngozi odita, dambisa noyo, chimamanda adichie, or you can explore african antiquated goddess such as  nandi zulu, cleopatra, nzingah ,yaa asatewa.  when they strike... they make a mark. this is locally, at war, in politics or in business, when the african goddess is around you will feel her and she will make an impact. Madia Willis born and raised in America by her Liberian parents is one of the next leading emerging Internationally positioned textile designers. She attended Columbia Univercity as a Political Science Major with a concentration in International Relations with the intentions of going to Law School. During her Junior year at Columbia, she studied abroad in Ghana and that is where she cultivated a strong interest in design and transforming materials in her immediate environment into pieces of art. she then decided that she would transition from political science to her love of textiles and design. After graduating Madia took on a job as an admission director for at an elite private school . The income from her position she used to develop her business. She maintained her relationships  in Ghana and began manufacturing her line from the continent. She collaborated with a group of artist and formed a designers collective called Dekka. "A seamstress has more technical skills in the context of measurements, cuts, folds,..." but the designer and seamstress should work well together. I am a designer she informs me not a seamstress. "My first seamstress was from Syria and she was extremely instrumental in assisting me in bringing forth my vision" '...Madia recollects. Her business was growing and expanding. she quit her day job to pursue a masters and "develop a full understanding in regards to the principals of  design."some of the components includes" size, lines,shapes color and texture." madia explains. This summer as a result of her pursuit and demonstration of excellence she was chosen to participate in paid internship with TARGET designing patterns and prints for their women's clothing line. In terms of how Madia defines her own clothing line she would describe it as fusing traditional West African fabrics with vintage and bohemian style. BiriBelle represents" the smart, sophisticated, well traveled, confident, and cultured woman who transcends racial and social barriers."

a dress that Madia was working on for a Ms. Liberia in a college pagent

The above piece explores MADIA WILLIS in Political and artistic form; her interpretation through design of the Trayvone Martin Case... 
"I decided to do a collection of prints centered around the Trayvon Martin Case and what I perceive to be the performative nature of justice in America." My assignment was titled "What's in the air?"