Created from coloured strands of synthetic waste materials like plastic and polyester, The Network is a public-engagement-driven, in-progress 3 dimensional work that operates as both an opportunity for and visual representation of actual social interaction.
Resembling something between free-form macramé sculpture and an electronic conduit system The Network can be viewed as a symbol of the often fragmented, unpredictable nature of open dialogue, with ‘threads’ of conversation joining into other tangents, tangling into dead-end knots or left dangling like a sentence fragment.
The first strands of The Network came together in 2011, borne out of the general belief that there is no substitute for physical social interaction, and that when the hands are busy in rote activity, conversation flows.
The no-barriers fabrication method — simply knotting one strand to another — allows anyone to join the conversation by simply tying one on, creating an opportunity for people of different subgroups to participate in a shared activity in the same physical space. The two artists responsible for the idea, Carlyn Yandle and Debbie Tuepah, perform the role of IT support: retying loose ends or securing lines of communication, all while retaining the integrity of each user’s activity.
As with dialogue or the world wide web, this project has no logical end but contains the inherent possibility of infinite growth and complexity, as lines are woven into area and volume.
The Network’s history:
2016 - Creative City Network Summit, hosted by City of Surrey (fall 2016)
2015 - Vancouver Art Gallery, Family Fuse
2015 - Surrey Art Gallery, inFlux
2015 - Vancouver Drawdown 2015
2012 - Maker Faire, Vancouver
2011 - Open Studio Events