At first it's hard to make out what is happening in this hot pink, crazy-looking room. Then your eyes get used to it and slowly you realize that it is crocheting on a massive scale. Olek, the Polish-born, New York-based artist has come to London to show us how it's done.
The whole domestic scene has been crocheted in a small London gallery. It took six months of work and a month to set it up. Every item in the show, called "I do not expect to be a mother but I do expect to die alone" has been lovingly covered with acrylic wool including the walls and floor.
The art tells a feminist story, as Olek works messages and phrases into the pieces. These are "statements revealing her position as a female artist in an art world that is inclined to have sexist opinions."
Some of the bits are repeats of text messages that she has received and they are actually intimate details of Olek's past relationships. So the viewer is drawn beyond the obvious colourful, in-your-face aspect and becomes enmeshed in her personal story.
Olek is ubiquitous, travelling around the world to her native Poland, Japan and the USA, displaying her creations.
There is a performance art aspect to her work too. As she explains "For the last seven years I have been creating socially conscious public “actions” that shape, inform, and transform the dialogue between the performer, an observer and a participant. I intend to make the audience develop new means of interacting with the piece, realizing that their response greatly impacts the art, and the ways my forms are moving over time. Their response is the art, and my work is a mirror."
Living in London for the past few months has influenced Olek's thinking. Hence this lovely crocheted black cab that was parked outside the gallery for awhile.