the blue jumper

Several weeks ago I turned up at my knit and natter group – ‘a crafty coffee’ to find that something unusual was happening. A local artist called Sarah Fulmer had brought her art project that she describes as “an ongoing community knitting project” and was asking us to participate.

At the time I didn’t think to take any pictures but on Thursday I went to see ‘the blue jumper’ exhibited in the Bargate Monument Gallery, Southampton and this time I took lots of pictures which I would like to share with you.

This is how Sarah describes the inspiration behind her project:-

“my mum died in dec 2006. three and a half years later, as my degree show piece, i made a film called ‘unravel’. it is the story of a blue jumper of mum’s that we gave to the southampton working women’s project, and which i later saw worn by a street working woman. there are scenes of a blue jumper unravelling within the film – the metaphor evident to anyone who has lost a mum. it is a piece of work of which i am very proud. and it stands alone …. but the journey has continued. the me who unravelled when i lost my mum, is re-knitting her self. the desktop folder holding the work for the blue jumper is titled ‘ravel’.”

The film ‘unravel’ which last about 5-10 minutes was shown on a loop in a small room to the side as you go in.

The blue jumper is still being worked on as you can see in this photograph.

And below is the piece that I added to the work. The rules of the project were that you could knit (or even crochet) any way you liked but the wool had to be blue. Wool and needles were provided. As a rainbow junkie of course I couldn’t be satisfied with just one colour so I chose to knit with a mixture of turquoise and royal blue, gradually increasing till I had a useable width, knitting a central stocking stitch section with a series of holes half way and then ending up with knitting stitches in alternate colours before the time came to finish. I felt I could have gone on all day!

The names of all the people who have participated in the project have been written around the wall by Sarah. I went looking for the part that included my name.

We had also been given a postcard and asked to write what knitting meant to us. These postcards were pilled up in the window alcoves for people to read. You can see someone doing just that here:-

At the end of the hall was a screen showing a very long piece of film of different people who had worked on the project knitting.

Here you can see Sarah Filmer (on the right) talking to one of the people knitting on the project at the exhibition.

You can see more about the blue jumper HERE on Sarah’s website and BLOG

The exhibition is on till the 14th October (open Wed-Sun 12-5 pm) , why not go along!

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