Posted on Friday, July 22 2011 at 10am
We’ve seen some fantastic guerrilla knitting in recent years, from Natalie Jones’ Pom-pom Project to Purlesque’s finger knit graffiti. But this week I had a grand idea for the ultimate in tongue-in-cheek yarn bombing – Gorilla Knitting!
To celebrate Bristol Zoo’s 175th birthday, life-sized fibreglass gorillas are currently placed at strategic spots throughout the city, and we think that with our dreary July weather they really could do with a snug hat, a scarf or maybe a lovely knitted cowl to keep them cosy.
The gorillas have already been decorated by artists, but surely some colourful knitwear could only add to their appeal!
The particularly splendid model pictured here is Jane Veveris Callan’s glorious Blackbeard Silverback, which is guarding the entrance to Arnos Vale’s slick new visitor centre. It’s a brilliant tranquil garden cemetery (the ideal spot for some peaceful alfresco knitting, in fact), and Blackbeard looks right at home there.
The gigantic noble beast sports some rather impressive sea-inspired painted tattoos, so maybe some tattoo knitwear would look the part. Or, as he’s clearly a marine gorilla, perhaps a bit of Fair Isle to honour the traditional fisherman’s sweaters.
Of course, most cities in the UK have been invaded by public art animals at some point. Last year Bath hosted an array of colourful pigs and this year has a number of lions. I remember London being home to an array of painted cows, and I hear other parts of the country have seen similar fibreglass species arrive en masse.
So you don’t need to come all the way to Bristol to indulge in some animal knit graffiti, though there is something in me that has to smile at the sheer appropriateness of Gorilla Guerrilla Knitting.