The Crochet Coral Reef Travelling Exhibition would very soon grace its ways to the beautiful city of Abu Dhabi. The UAE City would host the exhibition which has already been host in many other countries in the West.
It’s been shown at the Smithsonian in Washington, DC, the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburg and The Hayward in London. Now the Crochet Coral Reef Travelling Exhibition will soon be on its way to the New York University Abu Dhabi.
The exhibit has been curated by twins Margaret and Christine Wertheim, founders of the Institute For Figuring, a Los Angeles-based organisation dedicated to fostering an appreciation and understanding of the science and maths behind intricate organic shapes and figures.
“We curate the exhibitions and work with the local ‘Satellite Reef’ groups to help them create their own reefs,” said Margaret.
“The pieces in these reefs have been made by Christine and I along with a group of about 30 ‘core reefers’ around the world. They contain some of most fine and skilled pieces and have great visual diversity. There are thousands of pieces in these reefs,” she said.
The Wertheims used elements of hyperbolic geometry to develop crocheting techniques that allowed them to create intricate, woolly patterns resembling natural, brightly coloured coral reefs. Their Crochet Coral Reef project was meant, in part, to raise awareness of the effect global warming and pollution is having on coral reefs, while celebrating geometry and the art of crochet, according to the website crochetcoralreef.org.
But since their project was launched nearly 10 years ago, it has inspired dozens of groups – known as satellite reefs – all over the world to pick up crochet hooks and join the art, community and environmental movement.
The NYUAD community got on board after the institute invited Margaret Wertheim to give a lecture on coral reefs during a workshop last year.
The Abu Dhabi Satellite Reef was started, and before long groups of local crocheters began gathering on a weekly basis at the city campus to share their coral reef crochet ideas and create new forms together.
A community outreach component of the Abu Dhabi Satellite Reef, led by coordinator and artist Michal Teague, ensured that everyone, from the university’s students to its security officers and cafeteria workers, had an opportunity to participate in the crocheting workshops.
The crochet reefs created by the Abu Dhabi community will also be on display when the exhibit opens on September 29. Each person who submits a piece will get official credit for their work in the exhibition.
The exhibition of Crochet Reefs will not only generate great anticipations but also create the window of opportunity for Abu Dhabi to host one of the best exhibitions.