Welcome to the Cutting (& Stitching) Edge, where we showcase people whose embroidered creativity is fresh and new!
Liz Kueneke is an artist who works with communities to help them understand their neighborhoods through participatory embroidery. She has carried out projects in Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Ibiza, Amsterdam, Barcelona, New York and more.
Large hand embroidered maps of areas are created and then taken to the communities for them to embellish with stitches.
This is a fantastic idea, as the participants add value to the embroidered maps with their own experiences. It provides a social history to the area that you wouldn’t get from municipal maps.
You can tell from the various photographs on Liz’s site that she gets terrific engagement from the communities, many of which have existing embroidery traditions within their cultures.
Not only is a tangible map of the area created, but it serves as a time capsule of the places and spaces that have value at the time of creation. It would be fascinating to run the same project across subsequent decades to discover what changes and what remains the same.
I think this is a wonderful concept and something that any group should try. Needlework skills are not imperative and once the map is created any form of embellishment would work. You can discover a lot more about the projects on Liz’s website and if you’re part of a craft group, you should give it some serious thought!
Follow Liz Kueneke on Instagram to discover the other creative projects she runs with communities, and if you’ve the time, enjoy this video from the Urban Fabric project:
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