On The Forty Acres, A Knitted Wonderland

It’s like your grandma’s afghan collection exploded on campus — but way cooler.

The Faulkner Plaza, which lies in front of the Blanton Museum of Art, has been transformed this week into something they’re calling a “Knitted Wonderland.”

Dozens of trees are wrapped with bright, hand-knitted yarn. It’s all part of a site-specific art installation by Austin-based artist Magda Sayeg.

Sayeg, founder of a project called Knittaplease, has created artworks like this one in Australia, Brazil, China, Mexico, and all over Europe and the United States. Her idea is to humanize concrete and steel urban spaces with a surprising new kind of street art.

She couldn’t knit it all herself, though. For “A Knitted Wonderland,” Sayeg had the help of some 150 area volunteers.

Visually, the result is whimsical and straight-up lovable.

Kathleen Brady Stimpert, the Blanton’s director of public relations and marketing, has watched as an estimated 10,000 people have come to the plaza to check it out this week. Children just run up and touch it, she says. Only squirrels — like the mischievous little muncher shown above — have done anything less than marvel.

“It has been incredibly rewarding for the museum to see the space enlivened this way,” Stimpert says.

The installation, which was going to be taken down this week, is being extended through March 25.

Top: photo by Rick Hall. Below: photo by Mary Roland. Courtesy the Blanton Museum


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