Best known for her meticulously knitted yarn-bomb artwork, Polish-born artist OLEK has recently covered a 100-year-old house in Finland entirely with hot pink-colored crochet. From the roof to the floorboards, the two-story house is completely enveloped with huge panels of crochet stitched together by the artist and her assistants. Speaking of her impressive installation, OLEK explains the history of the century-old abode, and the inspiration behind the house’s new look:
Originally, this building, built in the early 1900s, was the home of Karl Jacob Svensk (1883-1968). During the Winter War (1939-1940), the family fled to evade bombs falling into the yard, but they didn’t have to move out permanently. In 2015, more than 21 million people were forced to leave their homes in order to flee from conflicts. The pink house, our pink house is a symbol of a bright future filled with hope; is a symbol us coming together as a community.
Browse the gallery above to have a closer look at the art piece. You can also view OLEK’s Instagram below to see the artist and her team in action:
Here we go again. #ourpinkhouse is coming to #Finland. I’m working with women (and one man) from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, China, Finland, Estonia, Russia and Poland. And we are not getting lost in translation. It is really magical to see people working peacefully together on something special. Thank you Kerava Museum for organizing it. #teamolek #teamwork #olek A video posted by olek (@oleknyc) on
We live in challenging times, a changing world filled with conflict, wars and natural disasters. But I like to think that it’s also a world filled with love. Our pink house is about the journey, not just about the artwork itself. It’s about us coming together as a community. It’s about helping each other. In the small Swedish community of Avesta we proved that we are stronger together, that we can make anything happen together. People from all walks of life came together to make this project possible. Someone donated the house, another one fixed the electricity and Red Heart Yarns donated the materials. And of course, most importantly, many women joined us in the effort to make my dream a reality. When I first came to Avesta to install a work of art at the Verket museum, I had originally intended to recreate a traditional home. And I did. However, when the Syrian and Ukrainian refugees who helped me install my piece started telling me the candid stories of their recent experiences and horrors of their home countries, I decided to blow up my crocheted house to illustrate the current unfortunate situation worldwide where hundred of thousands of people are displaced. After I exploded the house I wanted to create a positive ending for them as a symbol of a brighter future for all people, especially the ones who have been displaced against their own wills. Women have the ability to recreate themselves. No matter how low life might bring us, we can get back on our feet and start anew. We can show everybody that women can build houses, women can make homes. In 2015 over 21 million people lost their homes due to war and conflicts in their native countries. The pink house, our pink house is a symbol of a bright future filled with hope. Everybody should have a home. #Olek #avestaart @avestaart #sweden #avesta @redheartyarns #ourpinkhouse