50 years of flower power – a freeform crochet and knit artwork

In 2015, Freeform crochet or knit contributions were sought worldwide, for a collaborative artwork to be exhibited at Fibrefest, June 17-21, 2015, in conjunction with the Craft & Quilt Fair at Glebe Island, Sydney, Australia.

The artwork was made to commemorate 50 years since the term ‘Flower Power’ was first coined in Berkeley, California, and used as a passive resistance slogan for non-violent protest against the Vietnam War. By the ‘summer of love’ a few years later, the movement had spread; the term ‘flower child’ was synonymous with ‘hippie’, and a counterculture had sprung up embracing psychedelic music and art. This art style is often recognizable from its simple, graphic, brightly coloured, poster-like designs; and as many flower children sought a return to basics and simple living, crafts had a resurgence, and a distinctive style of no-rules crochet sprang up as a small part of the hippie, grass roots ethos.

In the end, we had just over 200 contributors from more than 20 different countries. The finished piece measures approximately 10m x 1.5m (that’s about 33ft x 5ft, and it weighs about 17kg (over 37lbs)…that’s a heck of a lot of yarn!!

The work travelled around Australia and was on display at many of the Craft & Quilt fairs in 2015. In July 2016, to coincide with the Jumpers and Jazz festival, it will feature in an exhibition at the Warwick Art Gallery, Queensland.

> Visit the 50 years of Flower Power project blog to learn more about the construction and creative process