Knitting is cool. Seriously! It may promote culture, revitalise rural communities, and serve as a tool for craftivism.
Tejiendo la calle (Knitting the Street), a Spanish collaborative initiative, believes crochet can provide inclusivity, sustainability, a sense of community, cooperation, and a lot of colour to rural environments.
The project was submitted for the 2021 New European Bauhaus award in the "Mobilisation of culture, arts and communities" category.
Tejiendo la calle uses "XXL crochet" to create light structures as beautiful sunshades, which are draped throughout the streets of Valverde de La Vera in Cáceres (Extremadura, Spain) during the summer.
Initiated by architect and Valverde native Marina Fernández Ramos in 2013, Tejiendo la calle is a social and cooperative project where women, at first and later also men, schoolchildren, immigrants, and all the people of the village crochet colourful sunshades to cover the narrow streets of the old village quarter.
The spatial art installation reflects the town's identity and cultural legacy, as well as an embodiment of the project's participants' aims and desires. The light structures of knitted long strips, mainly made of repurposed plastic (shopping bags and packaging), welcome greet visitors and contribute to the cheerful ambiance of the town.
During the day, they provide shade from the sun and direct visitors to the centre square, which serves as a focal point for those attending the town's celebrations.
Tejiendo la calle has also become a forum for rural community collaboration. The majority of the work is done by older women who preserve and spread lost textile trades. Their crochet works convey their emotions, wishes, and memories.
The pieces are lightweight and waterproof, and they are replaced every year, precisely as the garments that hang between the balconies of the residences.
Anyone interested in participating, regardless of skill level, is welcome to do so. Knitting can be done solo or in groups. Tejiendo la calle is a tribute to a small town and its inhabitants!
📸 © European Union
- Prizes 2021, Other Applications
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- Extremadura, Spain