08 Feb Craftivists co-create a Garden of Yarns as a gift to their community during lockdown in South Africa
Garden of Yarns | One Billion Rising 2021 Johannesburg | The Wilds
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The Garden of Yarns is a craftivism installation in the form of a yarn bomb using handmade fibre graffiti. It stitches personal and collective stories from threads of crochet, knit and embroidery. A flower bed of creative resistance nurtures blossoming blooms, love leaves and petal poems. An avenue of rescued tree trunks is wrapped in yarns of revolutionary love. Stitch by stitch, it reveals its floral beauty – similarly to how a garden springs to life… a seed germinates, a petal unfurls, a bud blossoms. Embodied with hope, the Garden of Yarns is a mindful gift for all sentient beings as respite from the dispirited Covid-19 pandemic.
This site-specific community garden will be installed on the east side of The Wilds Nature Reserve at Aloe Alley overlooking Houghton Drive, amidst the greenbelt of the city of Johannesburg. Resembling a pop-up outdoor gallery, the garden will offer the east side of this urban park uplifting love – similar to how the west side has been rebirthed by caring Joburgers.
The gardeners are a collab of South African craftivists and artivists from Joburg, Soweto and Thembisa. Through the artistry of craft, they are amplifying their call to end gender- based violence in solidarity with the One Billion Rising global campaign. The 2021 theme is “rising gardens, growing a garden is to love, keeping a community alive is to love.” Each year on 14 February, V-Day, activists rise worldwide. The UN statistic that one-in- three women will be raped or beaten in her lifetime equates to approximately one billion. GBV has escalated during lockdown. Simultaneously, humanity is plundering our planet. Womxn and Mother Earth deserve to be honoured for the survival of future life. The Garden of Yarns therefore advocates for kindness to our planet, to each other and to ourselves. The craftivists are setting the stage, a backdrop for artivists who are creating poetry and monologues. Men are also rising for their mothers, sisters, wives and daughters.
Lockdown laws prohibit an event in a public space. All C-19 protocols will be adhered to. As no audience is allowed, photos and videos will be shared online. The public is invited to walk through the garden from 14 February, wearing masks and adhering to social distancing.
Written and innovated by Stacey Rozen. For further info, please contact her on IG @curious_sleuth