Announcing A NEW PROJECT:


KNITSONIKTM is preparing for its first residency at the Prick Your Finger gallery between 4th – 12th May, 2011.

What is this?

The KNITSONIKTM residency is an intensive study period during which Felicity Ford will stay in the imaginatively fertile and woolly environment of the Prick Your Finger Haberdashery & Gallery, drawing inspiration from its contents for her forthcoming KNITSONIKTM KOLLEKTION. This KOLLEKTION is born of Ford’s need for a silent, practical, purpose-made utilitarian wardrobe (a hand-knitted field-recordist outfit) for use during her field-recording missions.

What is meant by “field-recordist outfit?”

The clothes of a recordist must contain adequate POCKETS; adaptable SLEEVES; un-rustley TEXTILES; and ways of containing and controlling unwieldy sound-recording device WIRES. The most important thing is that field-recordist clothes be breatheable, lightweight, and SILENT. The KNITSONIKTM KOLLEKTION will also enhance the performativity of the sound-recordist’s presence and behaviour in any place, drawing attention to the prosthetic aspect of the recordist’s gear, and its capacity for extending the body’s inherent, subtlized hearing abilities. In order to develop such a KOLLEKTION, Ford will consult with arch-knitters Rachael Matthews and Louise Harries about how to best produce a range of knitted and sewn woollen garments to enhance her field-recording endeavours.

The residency will focus on such issues as how to best reinforce a POCKET so that a recorder might fit into it; how one should best strengthen a knitted SEAM to make it both silent and resilient; and how neat, streamlined clothes could used to enhance the performance of the field-recordist whilst they are out and about in quiet environments. Focus will also be given to the references to sounds which might be made using knitted stitches with sonic associations, or with how sounds might inform the visual and tactile choices one makes in relation to yarns and stitch patterns.

As an extension of this consideration of the relationships between SOUND and KNITTING, the KNITSONIKTM residency will also give visitors to the show the opportunity to share their views on knitting and the soundworlds which are associated with the activity. Visitors will be invited to contribute their views on listening and knitting to a podcast, which will be played at a private view on May 12th.

When is this?

The KNITSONIKTM residency will take place between 4th May (set-up day) and 12th May (private view day.)

What can I do there?

At the residency you will be able to see the designs in progress, and discuss the relationships between sound and wool with Felicity Ford, who will be on site, developing her KOLLEKTION and showcasing the designs as they are developed. A range of fun stationery will be available for you to play with if you desire to contribute your own ideas to the KOLLEKTION!

You will also be able to be interviewed as part of the KNITSONIKTM Prick Your Finger Podcast, and thereby make a contribution to the ongoing research into the relationships between KNITTING and SOUND which lies at the heart of the KNITSONIKTM venture.

What is meant by “the sonic world of knitting?”

The world of knitting – like any other context – has many inherent sounds which are full of rich associations for its participants. For instance the recording above of Rachael Matthews’ spinning wheel (circa 2008) speaks of an era in Rachael’s life during which this was a personal feature of her own life’s soundtrack. If you are a knitter, you will have sounds – maybe not so explicitly linked to the craft itself – which relate to your knitting activities. For some, the sonic world of knitting might be associated with the grinding sounds of spinning machinery, or with the baas and grass-snapping sounds produced by sheep. For others, the sonic world of knitting will be more linked to domestic sounds like the kettle boiling or Radio4 playing in the background. And for others still, the sonic world of knitting may even have sinister connotations, being an obsessive background clatter of purposeful metal sticks clashing together intently in the background. I am interested in exploring the context of the sonic world of knitting; in what knitters listen to while they are knitting; in what knitters think about the sounds of their craft; and in the things we can hear which we don’t normally think about, when we knit.

Another project online which is currently exploring the sonic world – not just of knitting, but of craft in general – is TWEAVE – a project created by Amy Houghton and Ed Holroyd and commissioned by Craftspace. In the words on the official website for the project, “Tweave maps sound recordings of craft and making to create an evolving thread of sounds.”

During the residency at Prick Your Finger, one goal will be to contribute many sounds to the TWEAVE map so that knitting is thoroughly represented thereon!

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and KNITSONIKTM looks forward to seeing you at Prick Your Finger in May.

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You may transmit content found on this website (excluding my knitting patterns which are protected under International copyright law) under the following conditions:

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