The poetry of Leigh Martin's knitted sculptural works is in the organic quality of knitting itself. I was overjoyed when she granted permission to feature her on SiouxWIRE. See her Etsy shop for prints of her work.
In her own words:
"The [Decomposition] series is a study on the intricate textures of fungi and how they blend in to their natural environment. At a glance and from a distance, these knitted replicas meld in as a part of the magnificent cycle that transforms living plants to detritus and further into minerals that nourish other living plants as they draw these minerals up from the soil. For instance, when viewing the installation at the distance of the bottom photo the pieces appear natural and as though they are meant to exist there. However, on a closer encounter one sees that these are not fruiting bodies at all. The delicate knit stitch stands out and draws you in for closer inspection, much like the intricacies in the texture of fungi draw me in. These elements spur on a stream of questions that carry me meditatively in to a place of introspection. While this is a personal project, I hope that it excites the same way of thinking amongst its viewers, elevating to a greater level of awareness of one's surroundings."
"My purpose and founding ideas for this series revolve around the deficit in our society of interaction and awareness of the details in our natural environment. I am of the belief that connecting to nature in this way is a crucial element to living a fulfilling and present life. Natural intricacies, such as the detailed textures of fungi, consistently draw me in. These elements spur on a stream of questions that carry me meditatively in to a place of introspection. My hope is that this series excites the same way of thinking amongst its viewers, elevating them to a greater awareness of their surroundings."
"When viewed from afar, the knitted pieces appear natural and as though they belong in the installation’s setting. However, on a closer encounter one finds that the pieces are not real fruiting bodies at all. The delicate knit stitch stands out and draws the viewer in for closer inspection."
"My name is Leigh Martin, and I am a fiber artist and nature enthusiast residing in Central Oklahoma. My career in urban forestry involves connecting people to the trees in their communities. While trees are my greatest love, knitting is one of my greatest passions, retreats, releases and creative impulses."
"I learned to knit at a young age, though it never caught on as a consistent hobby until my college years. Always making gifts for friends or to raise money for various causes, it's only been in the past few years that I've begun knitting for myself. Projects have included knitwear, but more importantly I have devoted time and energy to developing sculptural concepts, designing my own patterns, and experimenting with free form fiber art as a form of expression. I've discovered an exceptionally fulfilling outlet and I am grateful to be sharing my work with you here."
"I hope that viewers take away from my work a greater awareness of their natural surroundings, a sense of how complex every ecosystem is and greater vision for noticing and enjoying these details in their daily life."
"I am pursuing the "52 Forms of Fungi" project in the year 2013 as a challenge for myself in developing new fiber art concepts, construction patterns, and skill related to the technique of my artistic medium. The project directly supports my ongoing fiber art series, "Decomposition" and also serves as a meditative practice inciting creativity and new awareness of natural processes as I learn more about these organisms that thrive amongst us and surrounding our communities."
BromeLeighad Fiber Arts (Etsy)
All images used with the kind consent of Leigh Martin - All images © Leigh Martin 2013