Needlework Rebellion

My Ghostly Remnant post serves as a nice segue into an even more obscure form of graffiti: embroidery.  If you try image-Googling the term “embroidery,” it’ll land you an eyeful of flowers. Sarah Greaves takes the stuff your grandma made, but does it with power tools. 
You see Greaves’ work and automatically note how visually different it is. But then you take a second, closer look at the amount of holes she made through metal and wood.  I got a grating, abrubt feeling (like nails on a chalkboard) when I saw how the softness of the thread appears to pour and force its way through the sink’s metal. I started to wonder how she made all those holes, so I researched. 
In an interview with the blog “Ape on the Moon,” Greaves said she marks out the drill holes beforehand.
“Metal is the hardest material to drill through but one of the easiest to sew as it tends to be thinner and the needle follows the hole more easily. Embroidering the sink and the fridge involved industrial cutting oil, a lot of drill bits and a lot of patience. The fiberglass bath was relatively easy to drill but the fine dust created is nasty stuff.”
In the same interview, Greaves also said she pulls inspiration from the news and politics.
“My work explores stereotyped identities and gender roles, our internal monologues and the public and private ‘self’. It pushes the tradition of embroidery and reframes the location and voice of the graffiti artist. The embroidered text is delicate and ‘feminine’ while the process demands ‘masculine’ tools such as drills and clamps. Visceral, intangible thoughts become permanently graffitied onto familiar, domestic objects,” she said in a quote from
“Man” tools + delicate thread. Makes me happy.
Images via here and here.

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