I’m not just another pretty painter you know!

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I’m also a yarnbomber (aka textile artist, aka crocheter, aka hooker) ! And this is the installation my team, The O-Town Bombers whipped up for Chinatown Remixed 2014. 

It is titled “Take it or Leave it”. A wall of flourescent generosity. People are encouraged to take something and/or leave something in the various pockets along the wall.

For me, there are many great moments of observation in human nature. Many people did not want to take anything because they didn’t have anything to leave in return. Even after being assured that they didn’t HAVE to leave something behind, many refused to take something for nothing. Then there were people who wanted to leave the entire contents of their purse and many parents who guided their children that they must find something to leave behind in the pocket before they take anything. There were also unsupervised children who came back a few times to the wall and who had to be stopped from removing everything from the pockets. They were being very sneaky about it and they had to be told to move along and leave something for other people to enjoy. There were many artists who latched onto the idea right away and many couples who giggled secretly as they peeked into the pockets. . My favorite was the young mother lugging around several children who put a condom into a pocket. Subliminal messaging perhaps?

I would like to officially thank my awesome team for coming out and whipping the panels to the fence in lightning speed and precision and for sticking around the entire Vernissage and Sunday. I would also like to thank Lisa Knight for her brilliant design and idea for this wall and for pushing through the chronic pain that she has to live with on a daily basis. You are a trooper Lisa and a great example of not letting anything stop you.

I also have to give a huge thank you to my mother and fellow Bomber who has been by my side crocheting little dolls to put in the pockets since February. You are the best hooker I’ve ever known woman!

Chinatown Remixed is an amazing adventure for all local artists in Canada’s Capital City and I’m so honoured to be part of it for the second year in a row. I love the support and dignity that is given to all artists. I am grateful for businesses throughout Chinatown that support and show off their talented neighbors. A huge thank you to the generosity of those neighbors as well in helping us support The Door Youth Centre in Chinatown by leaving donations in our fundraising box.

O-Town Bombers will continue to exhibit Take it or Leave It until June 17th but only on weekends. The unfortunate thing about public art (especially warm and fuzzy public art) is that it gets stolen. We will be setting up every Saturday and Sunday until the end of the Remix. Hope you come down and Take Something and/or Leave Something. It’s a great chance to go home with an O-Town Bomber original work of art.

 

Anne-Marie and Amanda hard at work sewing pockets on the wall.

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My amazing mother, Olga…our oldest and most prolific hooker proudly showing off her wall.

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The designer of our wall, Lisa Knight smiling as her idea becomes reality.

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If she’s not planking she’s dancing…our fun gal Amanda!

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The wind was cool but the sun was bright. The weather was actually quite cooperative all weekend! Yaaa!

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These girls were absolutely thrilled with the idea of picking pockets and not getting arrested !

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Ottawa is such a generous city !

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The wall could be seen from quite a distance.

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Our loveable goofball 🙂

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This little girl investigated every pocket. She found this little doll and put it right back in the pocket. For her, the prize was getting to look in each pocket. I finally convinced her to take the doll and then her and her father had a 10 minute photo shoot in front of the wall and the Chinatown Archway. She was the highlight of my Sunday!

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