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Edition Txet #1

sc h a l a l a l a ! ---------------------------------------A hands-on guide to ---------------------------------------f a n s c a r f r e m i x ---------------------------------------sample, remix and reknit your own fan scarf message ---------------------------------------(Version 1.0)

Compiled by RĂźdiger SchlĂśmer


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I n h a l t / C ontent –––––––––––––––––

Schnipsel / Snippets 7 ............................................................... Vorwort / Preface 9 ............................................................... T H E J Ö N K Ö P IN G P R O T O C O L 12 Knittings from T H E J Ö N K Ö P IN G L E T T E R A R C HI V E » T h e A b str a ct K n i tt i n g M a c h i n e « - Otto von Busch ............................................................... F AN S C HAL - R E MIX - AB C / ABC OF FAN SCARF REMIX 22 Fanschal-Strick-Grundlagen / Fan Scarf Knitting Basics Strickmuster-Abecedarium / Knitting Pattern Abecedarium ............................................................... S cr u m b l e V S . P a tcH : S tr i c K w e i se n i m D IAL O G / M E T H O D S in dia l o g u e 42 Horst Schulz über Patchworkstricken Prudence Mapstone about Freeform Knitting ............................................................... » D E R T I E F E R E S INN D E R MA S C H E N « - Sabine Fabo 52 ............................................................... Schal-Infozettel / Scarf Info Sheet 54 ............................................................... Remix-Rezepte / Remix Recipes 56 ............................................................... Impressum / Imprint 58 ............................................................... S C HALALALA E X T R A S 60 Samplingschablone / Sampling Template Labelfranse / Label Fringe ...............................................................

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S c h n i pse l / S nippets ---------------------

»Algorithm«: In mathematics, computer science, and related subjects, an algorithm is an effective method for solving a problem expressed as a finite sequence of steps. »Buzzword«: A buzzword (also fashion word and vogue word) is a term of art or technical jargon that has begun to see use in the wider society outside of its originally narrow technical context by nonspecialists who use the term vaguely or imprecisely. ----------------Sha la la la la la la, Sha la la la la la la, Sha la la la la la la, Sha la la la la (The Beatles) ----------------»Copying«: Copying is the duplication of information or an artifact based only on an instance of that information or artifact, and not using the process that originally generated it. With analog forms of information, copying is only possible to a limited degree of accuracy, which depends on the quality of the equipment used and the skill of the operator.

»Cut-Up«: The cut-up technique is an aleatory literary technique in which a text is cut up and rearranged to create a new text. Most commonly, cut-ups are used to offer a nonlinear alternative to traditional reading and writing. ----------------Sha la la la la, sha la la la la, sha la la la la (David Bowie) ----------------»Digital«: The word digital comes from the same source as the word digit and digitus (the Latin word for finger).. »Fan«: A fan, aficionado, or supporter is someone who has an intense, occasionally overwhelming liking and enthusiasm for a sporting club, person, group of persons, company, product, activity, work of art, idea, or trend. »Fan Fiction«: F.F. is a broadly-defined term for fan labor regarding stories about characters written by fans of the original work, rather than by the original creator. Works of F.F. are rarely commissioned or authorized by the original work’s owner, creator, or publisher; also, they are almost never professionally published.

»Hack«: Hacking refers to the re-configuring or re-programming of a system to function in ways not facilitated by the owner, administrator, or designer. The term “hack” is also used to refer to a modification of a program or device to give the user access to features that were otherwise unavailable. »Program«: A program is a list of instructions written in a programming language that is used to control the behavior of a machine, often a computer (in this case it is known as a computer program). ----------------Sha la la la la la la la, oh baby Sha la la la la la la la, oh baby (Al Green) ----------------»Remix«: A remix is an alternative version of a song, different from the original version. This name is also used for any alterations of medias other than a song (film, literature etc.).

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»Sample«: In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song. »Scarf«: A scarf is a piece of fabric worn on or near the head or around the neck for warmth, cleanliness, fashion or for religious reasons. ----------------Sha la la, sha la la, sha la la, la la la Sha la la, sha la la, sha la la, la la la Sha la la, sha la la, sha la la, la la la Sha la la, sha la la, sha la la, la la la (Fleetwood Mac) ----------------»Mashup«: A mashup is a song or composition created by blending two or more pre-recorded songs, usually by overlaying the vocal track of one song seamlessly over the instrumental track of another. »Schal«: German word for scarf. _ Sources: www.wikipedia.com www.google.com


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V orW O R T / P R E F A C E -------------------

Der Fan, Betrachter des Spiels, kann sich mit dem Fanschal nur begrenzt äußern. Er ist für A oder B, dafür oder dagegen, dazwischen ist fast nichts. Um dies zu ändern, begann Schalalala im Sommer 2006 mit dem Remixen von Fanschals. Erst nur am digitalen Interface erstellt, wurden die Remixe später in Handarbeit realisiert. In Strickzirkeln und auf Wohnzimmersofas entstanden so zahlreiche Schals und Einzelbuchstaben, eine kollektive Methodik des Fanschalstrickens. Diese Publikation zeigt das Spektrum von Schalalalas Fan-Schal-Remix, wie es aus den bisherigen Beiträgen hervorgegangen ist.

The fan scarf allows its user only a limited range of expression. You are either for A or B, for or against it. There is nothing inbetween. To change this, Team Schalalala started to remix existing fan scarfs in the summer of 2006. First created on a digital interface, some remixes were later realized by hand. In knitting circles and on living room sofas world wide, numerous scarfs and letters were made, a collective methodology of fan scarf knitting. This publication shows the range of Schalalala’s Fan Scarf Remix, as it has developed through all these contributions.

Der Remix, die Transformation fremden Ton- und Textmaterials in eigenes, ist im digitalen Zeitalter ein Vorgang, der kaum noch Schwierigkeiten bereitet. Begibt man sich aber in die textile Ausführung, die Übersetzung von Strickmuster-Pixeln in Fadenmaschen, wird es komplizierter. Zwischen dem ersten Anschlagsknoten und der letzten Franse liegen unzählige Handgriffe, die das Ergebnis mit bestimmen. Dem Amateur bieten sich diverse Anleitungen und Strickschulen, doch beim Stricken selbst entscheiden nur Hand und Nadel. Hier erhält die binäre Technik des Strickens, basierend auf den zwei Variablen Rechte und Linke Masche, eine persönliche Unschärfe.

Remixing -the transformation of given sound and text material into ones own- is a method so ubiquitous to most digital natives, that it will not cause much trouble. By switching to the practical level of knitting -translating pattern pixels into yarn loops- it becomes more complicated. Between the first knot and the final fringe, uncountable technical details will determine the result. Here an amateur might seek help from tutors or tutorials, of which there are many. But while knitting, one will decide through hands and needles. Here the binary technique of knitting, based on the two variables ‘knit’ and ‘purl’ gets a personal fuzziness.

Während der fertige Fanschal wortstark sendet, kommuniziert sein Gewebe auf implizite Weise, ähnlich einer Handschrift. Diese reicht vom leichten Maschenrhythmus einer Fläche über Detaillösungen bis zu ausgeklügelten Stricksystematiken wie Prudence Mapstones Freeform Knitting oder dem Patchworkstricken von Horst Schulz. Neben dem Austausch selbstgestrickter Botschaften liegt im Dialog dieser persönlichen Strickweisen das kommunikative Zentrum Schalalalas. Ein auch weiterhin offener Dialog, auf Fortsetzung wartend, durch Sie, Dich, Euch, die Fans, Lesenden, Schreibenden und Strickenden.

While a fan-scarf slogan rings boldly and directly, its texture will speak implicitly about certain characteristics of its author, comparable to handwriting. This goes from the rhythm of a plane surface, to improvised details, up to sophisticated methods as Prudence Mapstone’s Freeform Knitting and Horst Schulz’s Patchwork Knitting. Besides the exchange of self-crafted messages, this dialogue of personal knitting methods is the communicative centre of Schalalala. A dialogue not yet concluded, but to be continued by you, the fans, readers, writers and knitters.

Schalalala! Berlin-Zürich 2010

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Clockwise: »T-1413« Valentina Devine (US), »X-1563« Anna Smith (UK), »I-0673« Jönköping workshop, »I-0693« Jönköping workshop, »L-0748« Jönköping workshop, »O-1029« Pragueloop (CZ), »M-0849« Kerstin Ydreborg (SE), »A-0018« Jönköping workshop.

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T h e A b s t r a c t K n i tt i n g M a c h i n e — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — Otto von Busch »Peace of mind isn’t at all superficial, really […] It’s the whole thing. That which produces it is good maintenance; that which disturbs it is poor maintenance. What we call workability of the machine is just an objectification of this peace of mind. The ultimate test’s always your own serenity. If you don’t have this when you start and maintain it while you’re working you’re likely to build your personal problems right into the machine itself.« (Pirsig 1974/2006: 206) When approaching the crafts, the long history and traditional techniques can easily give the impression that everything within the workmanship of crafts has already been invented. Except some finer machinery, what more can be invented within the handcrafts? For an outsider it can thus comer as a surprise that there are still new techniques developed and invented among crafters. This is not too dissimilar to how chess masters constantly further the tactics of chess and beat every previous master. How can this be, after a thousand year history and with such limited material as 64 squares on the chess board, or just two knitting needles and a piece of thread? Craft is not usually connected to the idea of progress, but is an inherent but neglected part of the practice. But to develop and innovate, the crafts need to value skills of risk, tweaking the protocols of the art, rather than focus on conservation. This text is an attempt to help us better understand the virtual mechanisms behind knitting which could be used to power such advancements in the crafts, and innovation in knitting specifically. The ideas and techniques employed by Rüdiger Schlömer and collaborators in his fan scarf remix initiative »Schalalala« are such attempts, which re-appropriate technologies of representation as well as production, to use them as tools with which to hack the abstract machine of knitting. Since the rise of industrialism the craft has been associated with anti-progressive lines of thought and the preservation of traditional techniques. Conservation of folklore patterns, expressions and stories were central concerns when the craft associations were formed over a century ago, which has been put under critique today as problematic questions on ethnicity and historicity has arisen. The historical issues of the 19th century has put the crafts in a petrified state with no selfidentity of promoting new explorations or development of ideas or techniques. When attending a craft course, one often gets the impression that everything worth knowing was developed until industrialism and we now live in the craft’s dark ages. Often this is also reflected institutionally, where the crafts appear under the backwoods of cultural heritage and museum organizations. As one of the traditional crafts knitting is no different. Let us just have a quick look at what knitting is. Knitting is a craft technique to shape and interlock a thread with the help of two needles. Most often just one continuous thread

shape a whole garment, even though some patterns require the assembly of several individual parts, which in turn can be made from one thread. Still, there are a multitude of patterns and expressions available in knitted pieces of textiles. What create these expressions are alterations in the protocols of how the thread is knitted around itself and with previous stitches along the thread. Knitting is a thus a repetitive technique or a protocol of assembling stitches. Almost all knitting techniques are based on the loop of a single thread, but the thread can be looped into the next stitch in many different ways, thus a variety of basic protocols can be distinguished. The thread follows a course, and loops can be made perpendicular to the course of the yarn, called weft knitting, or in parallel stitches, called warp knitting. Basically, the loops can be made from front, as a knit, or from reverse, a purl, and furthermore the loops can be twisted, plaited, and shifted between columns or wales as a cable stitch. Knitting follows an iterative process of looping, following certain rules or procedures, that we can call protocols. Protocols are systems of organizing interactions, usually communications, in computers they form mathematical contracts, socially they connote diplomatic code of conduct. But protocols are also formats that combines liberal inter-operation and dynamic exchange with standardized or uniform procedures. As noted by media ecologist Alexander Galloway, we should keep in mind that protocols are not only guiding speech acts for shared understanding, but also regulate material flows, as bits in computers or container traffic in global trade. »Protocols are systems of material organization; they structure relationships of bits and atoms, and how they flow through the distributed networks in which they are embedded.« (Galloway 2006: 319) To understand knitting we should neither look at the macro totality, like the silhouette of a garment, nor at the micro parts, like the yarn or needles. We should not focus on the human knitter and ask her intentions. We must understand knitting as the decentralized inter-operations of the looped network of protocols. Knitting is an endless process of repetitions without inner hierarchy. »Protocol functions largely without relying on hierarchical, pyramidal or centralized mechanisms; it is flat and smooth; it is universal, flexible and robust.« (Galloway 2006: 317)

The protocols of knitting, thus situated in-between the loops, producing the interconnection of the thread, could be seen as a catalyst, as it produces a bigger whole from the single thread. A catalyst is a chemical substance which in relation to other substances produces change in these, but which does not consume the catalyst itself. A catalyst is aiding growth »from within« or »from in between« two chemical substances to facilitate interaction and trigger an autocatalytic loop, a self-sustaining process of change in the substances (DeLanda 1997/2004: 62ff & 291f). The autocatalytic loop is not only self-stimulating but also self-maintaining, connecting »mutually stimulating pairs into a structure that reproduces as a whole« (DeLanda 1997: 62).

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Clockwise: »J-0707» Annabel Logan (AU), »F-0505« Marcia Guerne (CH), »O-1060« Ewa Pettersson (SE), »S-1351« Jönköping workshop, »E-0433�� Irir (CH), »L-0762« Annabel Logan (AU), »O-1049« Monika Vykoukal (UK), »P-1077« Prudence Mapstone (AU), »C-0258« Okadascat (UK).

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It might appear far fetched to compare knitting with software protocols or chemistry, but these domains might help us better understand how knitting innovation happens. But let us return to the basics of knitting for a moment for better understanding how we operate with protocols. R e p e t i t i o n of p r oto c ol s In her book on knitting, Bernadette Murphy aims to »expose the creative and spiritual benefits of knitting that are not commonly known, to explore the more metaphysical and esoteric elements of this craft.« (Murphy 2002: x) For Murphy, a big reward with knitting is the combination of presence, skill and physical production, and usually a result beyond expectation: »learning a new stitch; discovering a different manner of reducing for shoulders; creating an alternate way of piecing a sweater together. Those were the real moments. And in doing so, I have created something beautiful, something original – a piece of wearable art that has never existed before.« (27) She elaborates on the curiosity of knitting, how it is always open for new forms of stitches, and for this she means there is needed a special kind of wit and intelligence; »Intelligence isn’t having all the answers. Intelligence is the capacity to learn what you don’t know. The sweaters I knit remind me of this.« (27) According to Murphy, knitting is not merely a craft of endless repetition of stitches and micro-patterns, which could popularly be believed. To finish a project there is not only a need for strict discipline and hard work, but also an attitude of continued interest, of focus on the rhythm and the patterns of repetition, with »a willingness to follow all the steps necessary, and a lack of impatience to get the end.« (40) This systematic approach produces room for applied curiosity where new stitches can be tried out within a framework of the known and repetitive, the knit and purl, the basic protocols of knitting. To learn and understand the processes of knitting, as with thinking, metaphors are common. As noted by Murphy, the founder of the Waldorf pedagogy, Rudolf Steiner, noted that »thinking is cosmic knitting.« (64) The use of stories is a common feature to teach knitting stitches. Murphy visits a Waldorf school to follow their knitting classes and she notices how the teachers tell stories repeated by the children. As the children learn to cast on, they »catch the yarn like a bird on the fence«, they cast off with “frogs jumping over each other”, or make longer rhymes to learn the knit stitch, in which the knitter is being a helping shepherd; »under the fence/catch the sheep/pull him through/away he leaps.« (68) Simple protocols communicated through simple stories which helps the beginner to understand and take on the basic loops.

sig’s motorcycle maintenance and the art of knitting, taking the initiative by Bernadette Murphy a step further. Knitting, like motorcycle riding, is about being present, of »being in the scene, not just watching« (5). Pirsig makes a distinction between the worldview among the »spectators« of reality versus the »mechanics« of reality. Spectators are involved in reality, but not in such way as to care; they take reality for granted and are not concerned about its workings. The mechanics on the other hand has an attitude of attentive examination and carefulness (33f). Pirsig compares his mechanic’s view on the motorcycle, to that of his friend John, who is a »spectator«, »It’s the understanding of this rational intellectual idea that’s fundamental. John looks at the motorcycle and he sees steel in various shapes and turns off the whole ting. I look at the shapes of the steel now and I see ideas. He thinks I’m working on parts. I’m working on concepts.« (119) A good mechanic approaches the motorcycle with an intertwined method of induction and deduction, synchronizing their mental images of ideas with the physical motorcycle. This is how he comes to understand the workings and interactions between the mechanical parts, through mental images and hierarchies of functions. Mechanics are »looking at the underlying form« of the motorcycle (134). Such mechanical approach can give the impression of a very rigid and cold scientific understanding of the world, but for Pirsig this is not the whole truth. To reach deeper into the workings of the mechanic’s mind one need to see the use of lateral drifting. It is a »growth of knowledge that doesn’t move forward like an arrow in flight, but expands sideways […] Lateral knowledge is knowledge that’s from a wholly unexpected direction, from a direction that’s not even understood as a direction until the knowledge forces itself upon one.« (148) But to take in and comprehend lateral knowledge one needs to let the attention drift. »Drifting is what one does when looking for lateral truths.« (149) Drifting could be seen as a slightly untamed and fuzzy line of practice, but it is a special tool for reaching quality, the overall concept and goal of Pirsig’s journey. He finds this qualitative mindset at a good mechanic or craftsman, whose work is a form of art in itself. »To say that [mechanics] are not artists is to misunderstand the nature of art. They have patience, care and attentiveness to what they’re doing, but more than this – there’s a kind of inner peace of mind that isn’t contrived but results from a kind of harmony with the work in which there’s no leader and no follower. The material and the craftsman’s thoughts change together in a progression of smooth, even changes until his mind is at rest at the exact instant the material is right.« (380)

T h e m e c h a n i c s of k n i tt i n g In his now legendary book »Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance« (1974/2006), Robert Pirsig explores the concept of quality and how it is reached by means of a »mechanic« approach to the world. The motorcycle, as an extension of the body but also a vehicle that incarnates a worldview, becomes for Pirsig a practical metaphor for a journey into the human condition. One could easily make a comparison between Pir-

For Pirsig, the trick with lateral and artistic drift is to produce models of understanding that does not severely reduce the width of quality. This is however a common problem of all understanding, as a conceptual comprehension squeezes an

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Clockwise: »S-1345« Jönköping workshop, »T-1400« Annabel Logan (AU), »C-0272« Jönköping workshop, »U-1528« Jönköping workshop, »I-0646« Jönköping workshop, »L-0778« Jönköping workshop, »U-1523» Hisae Mizutani (JP), »I-0667« Jönköping workshop, »U-1464« Stickorospan (SE), »T-1444« Tigerelfe (DE).

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»abundance of reality« into models, as argued by philosopher Paul Feyerabend (1999); »There is no escape: understanding a subject means transforming it, lifting it out of a natural habitat and inserting it into a model or a theory or a poetic account of it. But one transformation may be better than another in the sense that it permits or even explains what for the other transformation remains an unsolvable puzzle.« (12) Just like eighteenth-century explorers dismantled and reduced what they found according to their scientific models (12), so we could say the craft movement did with crafts when they tried to save it from industrial modernism. The craft movement reduced the understanding of knitting as it tried to conceptualize and save it. To name a local example, the Swedish craft historian Johanna Rosenqvist (2007) has documented how the Swedish craft movement at the end of the nineteenth century reduced craft into models of romantic nationalism. The patterns and techniques which were considered true to those ideals became considered as the authentic crafts, while all other bastard forms were kept out of documentation or archives. A good knitting mechanic would allow for experimentation with lateral drifts and bastard techniques, as it produced a multitude of approaches to the object at hand. »Ambiguity assures the potential for change«, as Feyerabend would say (Feyerabend 1999: xvii)

Sk i ll s of r i s k a n d t h e c ompl e x i t y of c h e s s But do not protocols produce an uncanny determinism and predictability in the work, one might ask. Rather the opposite is true, as protocols, in their minimalist dictatorship, widens and expands freedom, just like the protocols of the Internet has coordinated immense production. One take on this is the works of philosopher Daniel Dennett, especially his book Freedom Evolves (2004), in which he shows how the concept of freedom evolves as complexity grows in systems. Dennett exemplifies this through Conways’s Game of Life, a simple cellular game played on a grid, where the general rules are strictly deterministic. The rules on a basic level cannot be broken, but at a higher and abstract design level, where thousands or millions of cells interact, new patterns and actions evolve, seemingly free from the predictability of the small-scale regulations. The certainty of the rules is seemingly bent as abstraction and complexity grows, and an understanding of the protocols helps to tweak the technique. A certain amount of skill and craftsmanship is needed to handle the connection between the certainty of rules and the erratic modes of operation in the higher levels of complexity. This is indeed also true in knitting where a good handling of stitches does not guarantee a good design of a sweater or a complex pattern of stitches in a Latvian mitten. According to crafts theorist David Pye we can distinguish two types of skill in craftsmanship, or workmanship as he calls these manual skills, in an attempt to distance them from the virtues of the Arts and Craft inheritance. To Pye there is a workmanship of

risk, as well as a workmanship of certainty, which he expands on in his book »The Nature and Art of Workmanship« (1968). Brilliantly referred to in Glenn Adamson’s »Thinking Through Craft« (2007), Pye defines skills in workmanship as »the capacity to achieve constraint manually within the context of the workmanship of risk.« (Adamson 2007: 73) To handle risk skilfully is thus not to go totally wild with the material at hand, but to constantly re-evaluate it throughout the work process, rather than hang on too tightly to certainty and predictability. For Pye workmanship is not strictly divided between the risk of the hand or artisan and the certainty of the machine or factory, instead they are constantly intertwined. But good workmanship goes beyond the certain or predictable to become a challenge in detail or innovation: »Good workmanship is that which carries out or improves upon the intended design. Bad workmanship is what fails to do so and thwarts the design.« (Pye in Adamson 2007: 74) To take on risk is the first step to develop new techniques which improves the outcomes of design, even at a protocol level. Just like in chess, which protocols are described in John Holland’s book Emergence (1998), the possible connections of knitting are vast. However, interlocking loops cannot be created in any manner, as they follow certain protocols. For chess the amount of attainable positions are limited by the rules of the game. A bishop for example, moving diagonally across the board, can only end up on the same coloured square as it started on, thus limiting its positions. Similarly, the interconnected loops of knitting needs to form a fabric, a connected whole, a limitation which orders the pattern in specific ways. These are the patterns of protocol. As with chess, knitting starts with the same point of departure, and all games and knits start with the same set-up. But during the process, even within the limits of rigid protocols, the moves diverge very rapidly, and in chess the amount of possible moves exceeds the number of atoms in the whole of our planet Earth (Holland 1998: 37). This means that new tactics in chess constantly evolve and every new master beats the previous, not because of superior intelligence, but through the development of new techniques and tactics. This does not happen through conservation, but through constant confrontation and risk-taking. Corresponding to the tactics of chess, the ways to play with thread in knitting is constantly evolving, and is perhaps mostly restricted by the traditions and conservation agendas within the crafts community. If knitting was considered a challenge between great minds, such as chess, we would have seen another progress of innovation within the craft community. Just like scientists in Feyerabends account »sculpture reality« through experiments, as well as create the »semantic conditions« for discussion and further research (Feyerabend 1999: 144), the patterns and protocols of knitting actualizes new potentials within the material and knitters spread them through various media. The trick is to sculpture reality in a way that actualizes more potential rather than limit it according to the traditional models or patterns. To step beyond repetition into embracing difference, which usually takes a lot of courage as well as »workmanship of risk«.

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Clockwise: »L-0768« Renate Schlömer (DE), »L-0751« Lena Floren (SE), »E-0380« Pragueloop (CZ), »Z-1587« Jönköping workshop, »A-0003« Jönköping workshop, »I-0637« Jönköping workshop, »C-0258« Marie-Christine Gosse (FR).

-------------------------------------All letters were knitted from THE JÖNKÖPING LETTER ARCHIVE, an online/print collection of single letter knitting patterns. The archive was part of the exhibition “CRAFTWERK 2.0” at Jönköping County Museum, Sweden.

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Z e n a n d t h e » a b s t r a c t ma c h i n e « of c r aft s ma n s h i p So what happens when we use the workmanship of risk on knitting – and what can we learn from Pirsig’s approach? If we look at the potentials of knitting we can see the workings of a special logic of assembly between the two knitting needles and the thread following certain protocols is what philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari would call an »abstract machine« (Deleuze & Guattari 2004). An abstract machine is a morphogenetic structuregenerating process (DeLanda 1997: 263). It is the engineering diagrams that guide the processes of becoming, a specific model of assembly, like the chemical process of a catalyst, the geologic sorting of pebbles producing limestone or the DNA in a gene that guides the biological process of morphogenesis. Morphogenesis is the dynamic process controlling cell growth and cellular differentiation, which gives the shape to living organisms. This we could call the meaning of a gene as it guides the assembly of cells into organic and living form (Leroi 2005). Deleuze and Guattari’s term machine should not be understood in the limited modern sense of being purely a technical device, optimized to produce a specific outcome. Deleuze and Guattari use the engineer Franz Reuleaux’s definition from the nineteenth century that a machine is »a combination of resistant parts, each specialized in function, operating under human control to transmit motion and perform work.« (Patton 2000: 2) The focus here should be on the combination of parts, like the interlocking loops in knitting or the catalytic substances. The abstract machine of knitting should thus not be understood as an ordinary knitting machine. Rather the ordinary knitting machine utilizes and actualizes some potentials in the virtual abstract machine of knitting. The abstract machine of knitting is the very logic of knitting. This logic can be expanded just like the tactics of chess if we learn to manipulate or maintain the abstract logics of thread assembly. Learning from Pirsig, we can approach the abstract machine of knitting like he sees the inner workings of a motorcycle. We can undertake innovation in knitting through a mechanic’s mindset rather than that of a spectator or conservationist. The mechanic should reverse engineer the protocols and interactions between the loops, to expose the new and furthering the art of interlocking one single thread. The catalytic protocols of knitting need to be catalyzed in turn by the mechanic. When approaching the remixes of fan scarves, it is important to keep the abstract machine of knitting in mind, as it is the workings of this machine Schalalala’s fan scarves challenge to new modes of innovation. Here, it is not mainly the looping techniques which are modified and manipulated, but the modes of assembly between inspiration, representation and media technologies. One could argue that the role Schlömer takes is that of both a »mechanic« a la Pirsig, but also the »seminoaut« defined by art critic Nicolas Bourriaud (2002). For Bourriaud, the semionaut is an agent of cultural re-appropriation and this role embodies the cultural logic of today in the shape of semantic DJs who samples, remixes and transposes signs across media. Where the fan scarves remixes knitting with jazz

notes and unorthodox knitting practices, as well as distributed production with new music software, they also invigorate the space of possibilities with which we understand knitting. Or in the words of Bourriaud: »We tinker with production, we surf on a network of signs, we insert our forms on existing lines.« (19) This approach, of Pirsig’s mechanic, Bourriaud’s semionaut, as well as the fan scarf remix approach, exposes similarities to the »hacker mentality« described by philosopher Manuel DeLanda. DeLanda means that hacking is to go beyond distanced analysis and formal critique to reverse engineer the systems of reality and intervene in them directly with dirty hands. DeLanda encourages to »hack reality itself«, which means to »(…) adopt a hacker attitude towards all forms of knowledge: not only to learn UNIX or Windows NT to hack this or that computer system, but to learn economics, sociology, physics, biology to hack reality itself. It is precisely the ›can do‹ mentality of the hacker, naive as it may sometimes be, that we need to nurture everywhere.« (DeLanda cited in Miller). Such hacker attitude is what can tune the abstract machine of knitting by means of alternative techniques of new knitting, or I bold combinations of new media and traditional knitting, such as in the scarf remixes. With a hacker’s eyes, we can see that exploration and innovation has merely begun in ways to loop a thread around itself with the help of two long needles. But we must not forget that when innovating in knitting we also intervene in the social practices of our world. We transgress the dichotomies between the traditional and progressive, the historic and future-oriented, distanced critique and direct intervention. To return to the argument of Pirsig, we need to approach this sphere with attention and caution. We need to be zen-like hackers. As described in the initial citation, for Pirsig the peace of mind of the mechanic is a »material reflection of a spiritual reality«, which in turn produces right values and thoughts. Such mindset is also the basis for development of craft as well as social change. »The social values are right only if the individual values are right. The place to improve the world is first in one’s own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there.« (Pirsig 1974/2006: 381) So knit with new confidence. Explore new techniques. And let new carefully crafted utopias emerge from your hands.

R efere n ces : Adamson, Glenn (2007) Thinking Through Craft, Oxford: Berg / Bourriaud, Nicolas (2002) Post-production: Culture as Screenplay, How Art Reprograms the World, New York: Lukas & Sternberg / DeLanda, Manuel (1997/2004) Thousand Years of Non-linear History, New York: Zone / Deleuze, Gilles and Guattari, Felix (2004) A Thousand Plateaus, New York: Continuum / Dennett, Daniel (2004) Freedom Evolves, London: Penguin / Feyerabend, Paul (1999) Conquest of Abundance, Chicago: University of Chicago Press / Holland, John (1998) Emergence, Oxford: Oxford University Press / Itten, Johannes (1961/1988) The Elements of Color [Kunst der Farbe], London: Chapman and Hall / Kandinsky, Wassily (1914/1977) Concerning the Spiritual in Art [Über das Geistige

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in der Kunst], New York: Dover Publications / Leroi, Armand Marie (2005) Mutants: On the Form, Varieties and Errors of the Human Body, London: Harper Perennial / Miller, Paul D. a.k.a. DJ Spooky (n.d.) ”Essay on and interview with Manuel deLanda”, At http://www.djspooky.com/articles/ essayonmanuel.html [accessed 18 August 2008] / Murphy, Bernadette (2002) Zen and the Art of Knitting, Avon: Adams Media / Patton, Paul (2000) Deleuze and the Political, London: Routledge / Pirsig, Robert (1974/2006) Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, New York: Harpertorch / Pye, David (1968) The Nature and Art of Workmanship, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press / Rosenqvist, Johanna (2007) Könsskillnadens Estetik?, Stockholm: Nordiska museets förlag


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AN F AN G E N / how to b E G I N -------------------------------------Zuerst wird ein eigenes Fanschalmotiv mit dem Remix-Interface auf www.schalalala.de oder aus den enthaltenen Buchstabenvorlagen erstellt. Mit der Samplingschablone kรถnnen weitere Schals abgezeichnet werden. Das Strickmuster wird reingezeichnet und der eigenen Strickweise und dem verwendeten Garn angepasst. Dann geht es los: Stricken ist eine Masche aus einer Masche aus einer Masche. Es beginnt mit einer ersten Schlinge. Use the remix interface on www.schalalala.de or the included patterns to remix a personal fan scarf. You can rasterize additional fan scarfs using the sampling template. Personalize your pattern and define the colors, e.g. according to your technical preference or yarn collection. Then you can start: Knitting is making a loop out of a loop out of a loop. It begins with a first sling.

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A n sc h l a gs m a sc h eN / C A S T I N G O N S T I T C H E S -------------------------------------Aus der Schlinge auf der linken Nadel wird mit der rechten Nadel eine Masche herausgeholt. Sie wird r체ckw채rts wieder auf die linke Nadel aufgesetzt. Dies wird wiederholt, bis die gew체nschte Anzahl von Maschen angeschlagen ist. With your right needle, cast a stitch out of the first loop. Slip it backwards on the left hand needle. Continue until you have the wanted number of stitches on your needle.

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R E C H T E MA S C H E / K N I T S T I T C H -------------------------------------Von rechts nach links stricken: Mit der rechten Nadel wird aus der n채chsten Masche der Faden von hinten nach vorne geholt. Danach wird die Masche links abgestreift. Knitting from right to left: For a knit stitch, enter the next loop on your left needle from the front. Get the yarn from the back and bring it to the front. Exit with your left needle <---

---> LIN K E MA S C H E / P U R L S T I T C H -------------------------------------Von rechts nach links stricken: Mit der rechten Nadel wird aus der n채chsten Masche der Faden von vorne nach hinten geholt. Danach wird die Masche links abgestreift. Knitting from right to left: For a knit stitch, enter the next loop on your left needle from the back. Get the yarn from the front and bring it to the back. Slip off your left needle.

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I n t a rs i e n / intarsia -------------------------------------A)

Zum Stricken von zwei- und mehrfarbigen Buchstaben wird Intarsientechnik verwendet. Dabei werden bei jedem Farbwechsel die Garne verkreuzt. Der Hinterfaden kann entweder auf der R체ckseite locker gespannt werden (A), durch mehrere Kn채uel vermieden werden (B) oder beim Stricken r체ckseitig eingewebt werden (C).

B)

To knit letters with two and more colors use the intarsia technique. When changing threads it is important to cross the two yarns, otherwise the fabric will disconnect. The back yarn can either be stretched over the back side (A), it can be avoided by using several yarn balls (B), or it can be woven in on the back side (C).

C)

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N 채 h - App l i k a t i o n / S titch A pp l ication -------------------------------------Der Faden wird mit einer stumpfen Nadel nachtr채glich eingestickt. Ist nur eine spitze Nadel vorhanden, kann sie umgekehrt verwendet werden. Dabei wird dem bestehenden Fadenlauf gefolgt, um die Applikation dem Maschenbild anzupassen. To add additional lines stitch in a thread with a round needle. If you only have a pointed needle, you can turn it around and use the eye of the needle. Follow the line of the existing texture to blend in.

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A u fsp a n n e n / S tretch I N G -------------------------------------Der fertige Buchstabe ist oft noch etwas schief und krumm. Einfach in warmes Wasser legen, durchkneten und auf einer Stryroporplatte aufgespannt trocknen lassen. Je länger der Buchstabe aufgespannt bleibt, desto mehr behält er seine Form. When you have finished your letter, it might still look a little crooked. To straighten it out, stretch it in warm water, pin it onto styrofoam board and let it dry. The longer the fabric is stretched, the more easily it will stay in shape.

Z u s a m m e n str i cke n / C onnec T I N G (1) -------------------------------------Aus den Randmaschen der zu verbindenden Buchstaben wird mit einer Rundstricknadel ein Faden herausgestrickt. Beide Buchstaben können direkt hintereinander liegen, der Faden dazwischen bleibt möglichst kurz. To connect two letters by knitting, cast stitches along one side of one letter and the neighboring side of the other. Use a round needle to simplify the following process. Keep the thread between both letter as short as possible.

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Z u s a m m e n str i cke n / C onnectin g (2) -------------------------------------Die beiden angestrickten Buchstaben werden 端bereinander gelegt und mit einer dritten Nadel wie gewohnt abgestrickt. Dabei wird gleichzeitig aus je einer Masche beider Buchstaben gestrickt. Once you have casted on the opposing sides of the two letters, take a third needle and knit out of two stitches at once. Continue as a regular knit off.

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F r a n se n / F rin g es -------------------------------------Das Garn wird in der doppelten Fransenl채nge vorgeschnitten und in Str채ngen zu 4-6 F채den zurechtgelegt. Dann wird es mit einer H채kelnadel durchgezogen und als Schlinge befestigt. Die Schalalala-Labelfranse wird auf die gleiche Weise angebracht. Fertig! The yarn is cut to double the fringe length and sorted to groups of 4-6 strings. With a crochet needle, they are then pulled through the fabric and fastened as a loop. The Schalalala-label fringe is connected the same way. All done!

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„ Ic h w e i S S vo n a l l e n m e i n e n Ar b e i te n d i e M a sc h e n z a h l e n ! “ Horst Schulz über Patchworkstricken ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Horst Schulz (*1933 in Preußen) lernte als Zwölfjähriger das Stricken in einem dänischen Internierungslager. Seine ersten Strickarbeiten entstanden dort aus Sackleinen, für die er Draht zur Stricknadel umfunktionierte. Nach einer Laufbahn als Dekorateur in Berlin entwickelte er Ende der 80er Jahre das Patchworkstricken, gab international Workshops und veröffentlichte 2 Bücher. Das Grundprinzip seiner Methode ist modular: statt eine großen Fläche auf einmal anzuschlagen, wird Patch für Patch aneinandergestrickt. Dies vereinfacht das Stricken vielfarbiger, grafischer Muster. ___ Der erste Satz in Ihrem Buch, das vor 15 Jahren erschien, lautete: „Das Neue Stricken ist nichts anderes als das neue Denken“. Was waren die Schwierigkeiten, diesen neuen Ansatz einzuführen? So schlimm war das anfangs gar nicht. Ich habe einfach Pullover nicht quer gestreift gestrickt, sondern in Senkrechtstreifen. Wenn man sonst 70 oder 80 Maschen für eine ganze Pulloverweite einsetzt, wenn man noch schlank ist, dann sollte man jetzt bloß Streifen von 8 oder 10 Maschen nehmen. Und wenn man später etwas in die Breite gegangen ist, lässt sich die Weite ganz leicht um 1 oder 2 Streifen erweitern. Diese Notwendigkeit kann jeder begreifen.

Beratungsstunde wurde so ganz langsam zu einer ständigen Einrichtung. Ich habe denen auch nicht bloß was vorgelächelt. Und als der Laden dann pleite war, als eine der ersten Pleiten der Wirtschaftskrise, da haben mich meine Damen - es gab auch Stricker - angesprochen, ob ich das nicht irgendwo weitermachen könne. Da erinnerte ich mich: Horst Schulz, Du hast ja eine große Wohnung! Aus diesen Gemeinschaftsarbeiten entwickelte sich später erst das eigentliche Patchworkstricken. Bei einem Ihrer Strickkurse war es überraschend zu sehen, wie absolute Profistrickerinnen an der Logik Ihrer Methode verzweifelt sind. Die Logik! Das ist das Entscheidende. Ich habe ja keine neuen Maschen entwickelt, ich habe nur ein anderes Denken in das Stricken gebracht. Ich habe übrigens immer wieder bemerkt, dass Männern meine Methode leichter fällt. Ich habe in meinen Workshops teilweise Ehepaare gehabt, da hat der Mann der Frau immer vorgesagt, wie das geht. Das ist kein Witz! Wie hat sich Ihre Technik dann verbreitet? Ich wurde von Wollfirmen auf Messen eingeladen. Ich war da auf dem Stand von ONLINE, zufällig hieß die Firma so. Und wenn man auf einer Messe ist, dann kriegt man Kontakt, auch wenn man kein Internetler ist. Dort ist auch der Weltbild-Verlag an mich herangetreten und meinte, ich solle ein Buch machen. Die hatten auf jeden Fall erkannt - die, nicht ich! - dass ich da wohl etwas besonderes entwickelt hatte. Mir war gar nicht so klar, dass das eine Erfindung von mir war. Vom Verlag kam auch der BuchTitel Das neue Stricken. Die wollten das über die Schiene damals besser verkaufen.

Ihren Fanschal für Schalalala haben Sie nicht komplett selber gestrickt, sondern die einzelnen Buchstaben im Kreis ihrer Strickkolleginnen aufgeteilt und anschließend verbunden. Da liegt ja der Sinn des Patchworkstrickens, im Zusammenfügen von unterschiedlichen Teilen, und von Menschen. Mit meiner Technik kann man gemeinsam an einem Objekt arbeiten, das war vorher kaum möglich. Das Gemeinschaftliche daran hat sich eigentlich so entwickelt, weil ich faul war. Ich wollte mit möglichst wenig Aufwand möglichst viel erzielen.

Sie haben das Patchworkstricken immer bewusst als offene Methode praktiziert, im Gegensatz zu z.B. Kaffe Fassett. Der hat, ähnlich wie Bob Ross für Malerei, eine Vielzahl von Büchern über Patchwork-Nähen und -Stricken herausgebracht, die die Ergebnisse sehr genau vorgeben. Sie hingegen sagen: „das sind die Instrumente, mit denen jeder seine eigene Strickweise machen kann“. Wieso war Ihnen das so wichtig? Ich komme gerne auf Kaffe Fassett zurück: „Oh, ich habe einen Pullover gestrickt!“. Dann sage ich: „Aha, Kaffe Fassett, Buch 2, Seite 14“. Welche Rolle spielte der Woll-Laden, in dem Sie Das ist ja keine eigene, schöpferische Arbeit, das ist nachgekaut! Und inzwischen hat Fassett lange Zeit Beratungsstunden gaben? mit seinen Büchern, mit dem Hersteller Rowen zu Der Laden war die Ausgangszelle. Ich habe dort die Strickprobleme der einzelnen Kun- sammen, im Grunde hervorragende Verkaufskataloge den aufgenommen. Oft war das Hauptproblem, mit für deren Produkte geschaffen. Was besseres habe vielen Farben gleichzeitig zu stricken, darich noch nie gesehen. Über die Bücher werden vor auf habe ich dann das Augenmerk gelegt. Meine allem die Garne und Stoffe der Firma verkauft.

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Die „eigene schöpferische Arbeit“ ist im Patchworkstricken dadurch möglich, dass Ihre Technik so viel Spielraum bietet. Das könnte einen auch Orientierung vermissen lassen. Haben Sie oft Anfragen nach genaueren Vorgaben erhalten? Der erste Hammer war ja der mit einem barocken Pullover. Ich kriege einen Brief: „Da ist so ein toller Pullover drin und kein Muster dabei!“. Darauf hab ich geantwortet: „Man kann nicht den dritten Schritt vor dem ersten tun!“. Man muss erstmal die Technik kennen lernen. Ich kann nicht gleich komplizierte Sachen machen, wenn ich noch nicht mal simpel ein Teil ans andere stricken kann. Außerdem ändern sich die Garne. Wenn man nach 5 Jahren etwas stricken will, kriegt man vielleicht gar nicht mehr das Garn, das da vorgegeben war. Dann steht man schon mal auf dem Sand! Was soll man da machen? Spielt Improvisation im Patchworkstricken eine große Rolle? Unbedingt. Wenn ich anfange, weiß ich nie, was da hinten bei rauskommt, um mal mit Herrn Kohl zu sprechen. Die „verunglückten“ Arbeiten meine Schüler waren immer die Spannendsten. Die haben wir umfunktioniert zu oft erstaunlichen Ergebnissen. Kaffe Fassett sagte mal, man müsse Fehler nur oft genug wiederholen. Wenn man einen Fehler macht, ist das gar nicht schlimm. Man muss ihn nur irgendwann wiederholen, dann gehört er zum System. Fassett ist durchaus ein großer Mann, ohne Frage! Bloß, leider, was mich mit Zurückhaltung erfüllt, ist: Sie können immer nur möglichst genau das machen, was er vorgibt. Gab es andere Bereiche, sei es aus der Architektur oder aus der Kunst, die Sie bei Ihrer Arbeit besonders inspiriert haben, oder wo Sie im Nachhinein eine ähnliche Denkweise festgestellt haben? In unserem Umfeld besteht nichts aus einem einzelnen Stück. Es ist alles irgendwie zusammengesetzt, alles irgendwie „Patchwork“. Also die Architektur als Ganzes sicher kaum, aber die Details - grandiose Inspirationsmöglichkeiten! Zum Beispiel die Fussbodengestaltung, Fliesen, Kacheln aus dem Orient. Ich bin immer offenen Auges durch die Regionen gewandert und habe geguckt, „wie ist das“ und „ach, das ist mir noch nicht selber eingefallen!“. Ich bin aber immer vorsichtig, nicht nur zu kopieren, dann ist es ja wiedergekäut! Aber den Gesamteindruck, den nehme ich gerne bei mir auf. Sie haben neben Ihren Kollektivarbeiten auch selber sehr große Arbeiten gemacht. Zuletzt eine Patchwork-Decke, in der Sie all Ihre Garn-

reste verarbeitet haben. Die Decke ist 320 x 320cm groß, spüren Sie die noch in den Fingern? 12 Meter 80 Rand! Es hat zwei Jahre und drei Monate gedauert, aber ich habe mir vorgenommen: „Ich stehe das durch!“. Das ist ja etwas, was unserer heutigen Generation völlig abhanden gekommen ist: zu erleben, wie etwas aus den eigenen Händen entsteht. Denn das ist grandios. Natürlich oft auch hart! Schauen Sie dann im Nachhinein darauf und können sich erinnern, was in welcher Situation entstanden ist? Eigentlich weniger. Aber in dieser Arbeit habe ich viele meiner „Hausaufgaben“ einfließen lassen, kleine Strickarbeiten, die mal zu Übungszwecken entstanden sind. Da erinnere ich mich ja sehr genau, wo sie herstammen. Übrigens, ich weiß von allen meinen Arbeiten die Maschenzahlen! Ich denke ja nur immer in einzelnen Teilen. Das ist 60x60 für die grossen Teile und 16 für die kleinen Teile. Bei Schalalala sind inzwischen eine ganze Menge Buchstaben von unterschiedlichen Leuten gestrickt worden, zum Teil auf sehr eigenwillige Art. Gibt es für Sie beim Stricken eine Art Handschrift? Auf jeden Fall! Ich kenne meine Handschrift glaube ich sehr genau. Und wenn irgend jemand von meinen vielen Schülerinnen und Schülern etwas eigenes entwickelt, dann ziehe ich davor meinen Hut. Die sollen mich nicht kopieren, sondern eigene Wege gehen! Ich habe etliche Schüler, die sich meine Methode ganz persönlich angeeignet haben. Das finde ich faszinierend. Dennoch sind Sachen, die nach Ihrer Methode gestrickt wurden, eindeutig als solche erkennbar. Fühlen Sie sich da ein wenig als „Co-Autor“? Das habe ich mir inzwischen längst abgewöhnt. In meiner ersten Zeit habe ich gedacht, das ist alles meins! Aber ich werde den Teufel tun, da habe ich ja mehr Arbeit und Kosten, das alles wieder zu recherchieren und gegebenenfalls einzuklagen. Ich will genau das Umgekehrte, meine Maschen sollen ja „verstreut“ werden! Und da ist es ja völlig widersinnig, alles für mich zu behalten. _ Bücher von Horst Schulz: Das neue Stricken, 1997 (vergriffen) Das neue Stricken – Kindermode, 1997 (vergriffen) Exciting New Patchwork Knitting, 2000 New Knitting: Fashion for Children, 2000

> > > >

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„ L i ste n to t h e y a r n , a n d go w h ere i t te l l s y o u “

I knitted a lot of one-of-a-kind ‘picture’ sweaters and coats when I first discovered intarsia knitting back in the ‘70s. I would lightly sketch an image onto graph paper, and then square up the graph as I knitted, often changing and adding to the design as I worked.

Prudence Mapstone about Freeform Knitting ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Prudence Mapstone lives in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, and has been knitting for almost as long as she can remember. Her personal technique, Freeform Knitting is based on joining together many random patches (aka scrumbles), some of which she regularly publishes on her website or the online knitting and crochet community Ravely. ___ In Freeform Knitting you combine crochet and knitting in a very organic way. How did you develop this technique? I had been creating my own designs with intarsia knitting since the early 1980s, and I started adding crochet to my work in the 90s for a couple of reasons. I had knitted so much, and for so many years, that I was starting to experience pain whenever I overdid it. I found that combining knit and crochet together helped, as it gave me a wider range of hand movements. It also helped to create more unusual textures, and therefore gave a more tactile quality, to the fabrics I was creating.

Has there been any other major inspiration from fields like biology or architecture? By osmosis I’m sure that a lot of interesting shapes and patterns, both from the natural and the built world, have seeped into my brain…but I don’t consciously seek inspiration for my designs from any particular sources. What role does time play in your work? I would hate to calculate how long some of my works have taken to create! I’ve never kept a record of how many hours were spent on a particular piece, and I generally have a number of different projects on the go at any one time. The way I work is definitely labour-intensive, but for me it is pleasurable…if I ever hit a creative block I just move to another piece until inspiration strikes again. On your blog “A Scrumble a Week” you publish small patch ensembles that show Freeform Knitting in a micro scale. Is there a story to each of these scrumbles? I have always travelled a lot, and over the years I have collected yarns from many different parts of the world. I tend to remember exactly where and when I bought most of the yarns in my stash, even those that were purchased many years ago or are left over from much earlier knitting. So all sorts of events, stories, times and places keep running through my mind as I work on each scrumble.

Your works resembles strangely grown plants, “The evolution of the scrumble”, a step-by-step documentation of your knitting, even shows similarities to the emergence of city maps over hundreds of years. Do you experience your knitting as a chaotic process, or are there certain recurrent rules? My designs are very rarely pre-planned. Most times I just start by choosing a colour scheme and collecting a lot of yarns that fit into that range, and then the works tend to develop organically from there. I do have favourite colours, and also favourite stitches, and sometimes I decide that a piece will be predominantly knit or predominantly crochet…but mostly I just start by playing around with the yarns I have chosen. What eventually develops does not always follow the ideas that I might vaguely have had in mind at the start.

How do you go about making larger pieces? Most of my creations are made up of many smaller, random, multi-directional patches. The size of the patches for any one piece is often dependent on how large the finished work will be, but generally I like to work small – quite tiny areas in many different yarns, making up fairly smallish patches…and strangely enough, the more random the finished shapes of the patches, the better they will all ‘fit’ together in the end.

For your letter contribution to Schalalala you chose a very twisty pattern, which perfectly fits your personal technique. Some of your knitted wallhangings even resemble freestyle graffiti. Have you used Freeform Knitting for other (typo-)graphic or figurative motives before?

How does the Internet, or a tool like a weblog, affect your knitting practice? I have knitted since I was a small child, and I now belong to a number of (interstate and overseas) knitting and crochet guilds, and I now also teach a lot of workshops…but with-

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out the internet I feel that I still would have been working in relative isolation. I have lived in the sub-tropics for almost 30 years, and I didn’t run into a lot of other knitters or crocheters when I first moved here…but the internet and websites like the knitting and crochet community Ravelry.com have definitely changed that. If it hadn’t been for the internet I’m sure my reputation wouldn’t have spread outside my own city; then I never would have had the chance to teach all around the world, or to discover and meet up with so many other creative fibre artists outside of my own local community.

hat or handbag that I was intending to create, in which case the work might morph into something much larger, like a jacket or a coat. You sometimes just have to listen to the yarn, and go where it tells you. During a workshop I love to see the way each individual student’s work evolves, and I am always thrilled when I am lucky enough to see their finished creations, too. In a class I always try to discourage any unpicking or ripping out when someone is not altogether happy with how their piece is developing - often the most creative work will emerge when the maker is trying to overcome what is initially perceived as a problem.

How do you teach such a method? When I was first invited to teach a workshop I just laughed it off, saying that I couldn’t really teach my methods because I just made things up as I went along; but I found that so many people where interested. After I demonstrated at a large local show, knitters were literally queuing up enquiring about classes. Just over 10 years ago I finally agreed to give a couple of workshops at a new yarn shop that was opening up in my town, and ever since then things have just snowballed. After I posted photos of my creations on the internet I had so many people emailing me to ask if I had written a book explaining how I did what I did, that I decided I would just have to write one!

What can’t be found in any knitting book? There are so many fabulous knitting books on the market nowadays that anyone wanting to follow a recipe should be able to find a pattern for just about anything that takes their fancy; and there are lots of great stitch and technique dictionaries around, too…but true creativity is innate, and isn’t something that can be taught or learned from a book. But having said that, I do hope that my books and workshops help to inspire others to break away occasionally from the safer path of tried and tested patterns, so that they can discover for themselves the thrill of expressing their own individuality using knitting and/or crochet as an artistic medium.

What kind of feedback do you get? Many people send me pictures of their freeform knittings, and I am always thrilled to know that others have run with certain ideas, and to see what they have created. I never imagined that I would have such a lot of ‘fans’, especially so many from so far away. It is always wonderful to hear that my books, website or creations have inspired someone else to push the boundaries of what they are creating with knitting or crochet.

_ Prudence Mapstone on the web: > www.knotjustknitting.com > www.prudencemapstone.blogspot.com > www.ravelry.com/groups/prudence-mapstone

You also call your scrumbles “random patches”. What part of them, for you, is „random“? Since I don’t carefully pre-plan my creations, a lot of what happens during the making does seem to be fairly random. Once I have decided on the colours and stitches I will start out with, I tend to just go with the flow. Sometimes I will feel the need to add in other stitches or colours as the work progresses, or I might get sick of a colour combination altogether, so that particular choice of yarns might never evolve beyond a scrumble or two… but then sometimes I look down and discover that I have made way too many patches for the

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V om t i e f e r e n S i n n d e r M a s c h e n — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — Sabine Fabo

Eierwärmer und Topflappen – ein Jungmädchenalptraum. Unter dem strengen Blick einer vom Schulsystem zwangsverordneten Handarbeitslehrerin in mühevoller Maschenarbeit, mit steifer werdenden Fingern, gehäkelt und gestrickt, hatten diese Utensilien nur einen sinnvollen Spin-Off-Aspekt: Man hatte gleich kleine Geschenke zur Hand für Tanten und Mütter, die sich freuen mussten, unabhängig vom Ergebnis. Dabei weist bereits diese frühe Konstellation alle Merkmale textil gestützter Kommunikation auf: Eierwärmer und Topflappen regulieren auf ihre spezifische Art den Wärmeaustausch zwischen den Dingen und ihren Benutzern. Darüber hinaus sind sie Medien einer erzieherischen Maßnahme und später, als Sprache der Zuneigung, vermitteln sie Gesten des Schenkens und Entgegennehmens. Objekte stiften Beziehungen an – und es sind diese Verhältnisse zwischen Menschen, Dingen und Menschen, die im Mittelpunkt von Rüdiger Schlömers Arbeit stehen. Textiles hatte ihn bereits vor einigen Jahren in Form von parasitären gestickten Labels – Additional (2002) - oder fleckigen T-Shirts im Projekt Reverse Engineering (2004) interessiert. Auch hier ging es nicht so sehr um die stofflichen Qualitäten der Dinge, sondern um ihre Verknüpfbarkeit mit anderen Diskursen. Lassen sich Farbspritzer auf einem T-Shirt als Partitur lesen oder als kriminologische Spuren deuten? Kann man aus diesen Strukturen ein Kochrezept generieren? Ferran Adria antwortet auf das Fleckengebilde mit Gewürzen, die sich auf einer geschmacksneutralen Apfelsuppe anordnen. Die textilen Projekte verfolgen keinen ästhetischen Eigensinn und begnügen sich nicht mit dem Status ihres guten Aussehens, sondern loten ihre Ankoppelungsmöglichkeiten an andere Referenzsysteme aus. Die Transpositionen reichen vom T-Shirt zur Suppe, von Kugelschreiberkritzeln zu Sounds, die von Musikern im Jahr 2007 in einer Aufführung zusammengebracht werden, the writing(s) of… . Vieles ist mit vielem verknüpfbar. Jede Einheit, egal in welcher Materialität sie vorliegt, dient als Sample, nicht nur für Hörbares, sondern auch für ein Kreuz- und Querdenken, das die Metaphern von Gewebe und Netzwerk als das Zentrum von Kommunikation und kreativer Arbeit begreift. Der Reichtum assoziativer Haupt- und Nebenwege schlägt sich in einem materialgebundenen Pendant nieder, wird sichtbar und greifbar, um dann zu neuen Ausdrucksformen zu mäandern. Die Grenzen zwischen handfest und digital werden stets überschritten und durchlässig gehalten, alle Stadien der Materialität sind im Repertoire dieser Textil-Sprache enthalten. Bei

Schalalala, begonnen im deutschen Sommermärchen der Fußballweltmeisterschaft 2006, emanzipiert sich der Fanschal aus dem bierseligen Dunstkreis der Fußballstadien und wird in gehackter Form zum bunten Alphabet einer individualisierten Sprache. Die Bilder der Schals lassen sich mit der virtuellen Schere auf der Website „zerschneiden“ und zu neuen Sinnfigurationen collagieren, die wiederum zu einem konkreten Schal gestrickt werden können. Oder man leistet die sprachliche Basisarbeit des Jönköping Letter Archive, das die aus den Fanschals isolierten Buchstaben als grob gepixelte Strickmuster zum Download anbietet, wobei ein Pixel einer Masche entspricht. Die Besucher der Website sind aufgefordert, einen Buchstaben ihrer Wahl zu stricken und den an das schwedische Jönköping County Museum zu senden, wo die Einsendungen in der Reihenfolge ihres Eintreffens zu einem überdimensionierten, bedeutungsfreien Text zusammengefügt werden. Die Buchstäblichkeit der Arbeit befreit die Einzelelemente vom Ballast der Informationsübertragung und nähert sich der zweckfreien Schönheit der Konkreten Poesie. Weitergehend wird mit dem webbasierten Stricken eine intelligente vordigitale Form der Verknüpfung mit dem Processing elektronischer Medien verhakt. Stricken bringt nicht nur Maschen in einen Zusammenhang, sondern auch deren Autoren. Der handwerkliche Prozess selbst wirkt gemeinschaftsbildend und wird zum Modell zwischenmenschlicher Kommunikation. Die von Rüdiger Schlömer initiierten Parallelprozesse halten sich nahe am kleinen Alltag der Teilnehmer auf, sie sympathisieren mit Haushalten und HaushälterInnen und gewinnen aus der Selbstverständlichkeit traditioneller Handarbeit eine konzeptionelle Alternative zum unreflektierten Hype globaler Netzwerke. Die regelmäßige, routinierte Handarbeit leistet einen leisen Kommentar zu Vorformen industrieller Arbeitsprozesse und deren elektronischer Nachfolger. Produktivität entschleunigt sich zu einer rhythmischen, vielleicht sogar musikalischen Tätigkeit, bei der das Klappern der Stricknadeln in der Strick-Gruppe einen eigenwilligen konzertanten Körper formen kann. Im aktuellen Kunstdiskurs ließe sich das als taktisches Agieren im Sinne de Certeaus „Kunst des Handelns“ ansprechen. Die Taktiken des Alltags behaupteten dann ihre subversive Eigenwilligkeit gegenüber der Dominanz herrschender Produktionsverhältnisse, eine Kritik des Konsums wäre hier implizit. Man kann aber auch die Eigendynamik des Materials zulassen und sich ohne den Ballast der Theorie und gegen den Widerstand traumatisierender Schulerlebnisse in den Aktionsradius des Textilen begeben.

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S C HAL IN F O / S C A R F I N F O --------------------------

Schalalala sammelt weiterhin persönliche Strickmethoden, Erzählungen und Schnipsel, die aus Schalalalas Fan-Schal-Remix hervorgingen oder es erweitern. Beiträge wie Fotos des Strickprozesses oder des Schals bitte an: info@schalalala.de (Postadresse auf Anfrage)

Gestrickt von / Knitted by: ............................................... ............................................... ...............................................

Schalalala continues collecting individual fan scarf knitting methods, side stories and snippets that derive from and complement Schalalala’s Fan Scarf Remix. Please send contributions as photos of your knitting process or your final scarf to: info@schalalala.de (post address upon request).

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Kontakt / Contact:

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R E MIX - R E Z E P T E / R emix R ecipes -------------------------------

JÖNKÖPING PROTOCOL

J Ö N K Ö P IN G P R O T O K O LL 1. Suche eine Gruppe von drei bis zehn Leuten, die stricken oder es sich beibringen können. 2. Wählt je heimlich einen Buchstaben aus dem JÖNKÖPING LETTER ARCHIVE und strickt ihn mit einer durchschnittlichen Höhe von 20cm. 3. Notiert wann genau die einzelnen Buchstaben fertig gestrickt wurden. 4. Verbindet alle Buchstaben in der Reihenfolge ihrer Fertigstellung.

1. Club together with 3-10 people who know how to knit or can teach it. 2. Secretly each choose one letter from THE JÖNKÖPING LETTER ARCHIVE and knit it with an average height of 20cm (8”). 3. Individually note when your letter was finished. 4. Meet again and connect all letters in order of their completion.

Weitere Remix-Rezepte:

Further remix recipes:

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IM P R E S S UM / I M P R I N T ---------------------

Schalalala’s hands-on guide to FAN SCARF REMIX is published as a postscript to the exhibition »CRAFTWERK 2.0 - New Household Tactics for the Popular Crafts«, 09/2009-03/2010 at Jönköping County Museum, Sweden. All letters on pages 12-18 were knitted from THE JÖNKÖPING LETTER ARCHIVE (online at www.schalalala.de/the-jonkoping-letter-archive). All illustrations were re-drawn and extended from knitting books in the Jönköping city library and other sources. Scarf & letter contributions where knitted by: Clara Åhlvik (SE), Evi Balzar (DE), Veronika Beckh (DE), Annabel Logan (AU), Otto von Busch (SE), Valentina Devine (US), Lena Eriksson (SE), Marie-Christine Gosse (FR), Marcia Guerne (CH), Knitting in Los Alamos (US), Irir (CH), Jane Lataille (US), Norma Mack (DE), Astrid Mania (DE), Prudence Mapstone (AU), Hisae Mizutani (JP), Naoko Ogawa (DE), Okadascat (UK), Pragueloop (CZ), Ewa Pettersson (SE), Saiko Ryusui (DE), Katarina Segerbrand (SE), Renate Schlömer (DE), Strickliesl (DE), STRICKZIRKEL# (DE), Tigerelfe (DE), Horst Schulz mit Christel Artz, Monika Faul, Kerstin Hering, Renate Korpus und Eveline Riefer-Rucht (DE), Anna Smith (UK), Stickorospan (SE), Dorothea Uckelmann (CH), Sunshine Wong (DE), Monika Vykoukal (UK), Kerstin Ydreborg (SE), VAL1ant (US) and others.

D a n k AN / T hank s T O : all fans, voluntary and involuntary scarf donators, remixers and knitters. Clara Åhlvik, Otto von Busch, Sabine Fabo, the Jönköping County Museum staff. Emma Balkind, Christoph Balzar, Veronika Beckh, Wilfried Hou Je Bek, Katharina Birkenbach, Ingolf Bode, Max Borka, Irene Breckner, Sally O’Brien, Angelika Bühler, Nick Currie, Valentina Devine, Heike Ebner, Kajsa Eriksson, Ulrike Feld, Renate Flagmeier, Tim Gaze, Christian Gellner, Allan Gretzki, Catherine Hemelryk, Katja Hentschel, Kerstin Hering, Joe Howe, Dominique Hurth, Katharina Jedermann, Ruediger John, Garth Johnson, Linda Kostowski, Robert Kraiss, Michael Kröger, Kyoka, Jan Lindenberg, Mario Lombardo, Yoshito Maeoka, Astrid Mania, Travis Meinolf, Hisae Mizutani, Naoko Ogawa, Horst Schulz, Holger Schulze, Christian Schmalohr, Cornelia Schmidt-Bleek, Florinda Schnitzel, Gaby & Wilhelm Schürmann, Erik Spiekermann, Bitten Stetter, Michael Stevenson, Jutta Südbeck, Jennie Syson, Dorothea Uckelmann, Imke Volkers, Tino Werner, Cornel Windlin, Alexander Wittek, Ivonne Woltersdorf, Sunshine Wong, Héctor Zamora, and all other contributors. Contemporary Art Center [CAC], Institute for Art in Context - UdK Berlin, Jönköping County Museum, Kunstraum Richard Sorge, MARTa Herford, Röhsska Design Museum Göteborg, San Jose Museum for Quilts and Textiles, Schürmann Berlin, Werkbundarchiv/Museum der Dinge Berlin.

-------------------------------------Schalalala is a project by Rüdiger Schlömer. The Schalalala remix interface was developed in cooperation with Jan Lindenberg (programming). Additional photography by Christoph Balzar (pp.10/51), Nick Currie (pp.21/40) and Prudence Mapstone (p.47). All original content © 2006–2010 Schalalala and the authors unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved. Any commercial duplication or use of objects such as images and texts is not permitted without written agreement. Copying for private purpose and knitting multiplication is most welcome - please send pictures!

S P O N S O R E N / S P O N S O R S : Addi, Coats GmbH, Folex AG, Lang Yarns, Prym Consumer, Tutto GmbH. This publication is released as Edition Txet #1. Concept & Design: Rüdiger Schlömer. Photocopied at CSV Copy Berlin & KULTURBÜRO Zürich. -------------------------------------J ö n köp i n g C o u n t y M u se u m www.jkpglm.se

Schalalala www.schalalala.de

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FAN SCARF REMIX