Spinning Strands: Knitting Together lives lost

2016 / fuller craft museum / brockton, ma

Every year more than 2,500 children are killed or injured by guns in America. In 2015, 823 children lost their lives to gun violence. Fuller Craft Museum and artist Melissa Maddonni Haims wonder what might have become the fabric of these children’s lives—and offer you, the visitor, the opportunity to participate in creating it. 

Provided are the names, ages and location of the 823 children who lost their lives to gun violence during 2015, and a red pen. To the left, a “yarn” ball of fabric strips. It appears to be nothing more than a jumble of thread—tangled, frayed, occasionally knotted, and seemingly random.

We invite you to take a seat at the school desk left vacant by these lives, cross off the name and age of one of the children on the list and inscribe it onto the fabric yarn, pull the fabric across the desk to the right, adding a length to the pile of yarns in the basket.

At the conclusion of the exhibit, the artist will create a new artwork, knitting these names together with the intent that no thread of experience—good or bad—is to be wasted, she will knit these names together, into the collected fabric of their lives, joining strands, creating patterns or making them visible.