Can't Break These Bones: Knitted Skeletons by Echo Park Artist

Is it me, or is there something creepy about knitting?

Am I the only one who is reminded of a witch’s coven when someone says the term “knitting circle?” Do I need to point out the obsessive nature of this hobby, or the dangerous weapon-like knitting needles that should not be allowed on any commercial airlines. Also, any ritual done by an innocent-looking granny while slowly rocking in a chair is inherently suspicious.

Then, if you need any more proof, there are the knitted works of art from Echo Park resident, Ben Cuevas, whose most recent creation will be on display through to September 29th at Knitculture.

All you need to know about this current installation is that one day, while this local artist was knitting a recreation of an anatomically-correct human heart, he was struck with an inspired idea. He decided he was going to create an anatomically-correct human skeleton made of bone-colored yarn just for the challenge of it, and after thirty days of knitting (8 hours a day), that is exactly what he did. According to an old saying “Idle hands are the Devil’s playground.” That may be true, but one look at the finished product and its clear that busy hands can create some devilish things too. The end result might be the only skeleton in the world that can keep you warm at night.

Now here’s the weird part, this grinning, grim piece of fabric folk-art, sits peacefully posed (almost floating in air) in the lotus position, as if it were the very symbol of enlightenment. When Cuevas was asked about this almost unsettling juxtaposition, and if he thought this boney Buddha was macabre, Cuevas commented “When I first came up with the idea, I saw the skeleton clearly in my mind sitting in the Lotus position. Sure, there are macabre elements. With my art, I try to examine the pull between a medium that is soft and safe and use it for the anatomical pieces that are generally thought of as grotesque. That’s the fun part, exploring those dichotomies”

It is fitting that within Los Angeles, a city of many contradictions, there is yet another dichotomy worth exploring, namely that this pastime from the senior set is finding new life blood from the youth culture. Today’s knitting circles it seems are anything but square, now that a new generation of artists are daring to explore the dark side of stitching. From This soft skeleton’s crocheted cranium down to its fuzzy femurs, this cuddly, creepy creation must be seen to be disbelieved.

Knitculture, 8118 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048 (323) 655-6487