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Murmurate installation at the St Norbert Art Centre | photo credit: Jesse Procyshyn

Knotting as a Spatial Practice: Murmurate

May 23, 2019 — 

Master of Interior Design students at the University of Manitoba have recently completed a two week long intensive studio that created a Birdwatching Hideout in the St Norbert Art Centre (SNAC). The installation, entitled Murmurate, engaged the craft of knotting, weaving and digital technologies.  This studio, which was instructed by Associate Professor Tijen Roshko (BID, M.Sci.), Fab Lab Director Kim Wiese (BID, M. Arch) and Fab Lab Manager Jason Hare (M. LArch.), developed a relationship with local artists and tapped into the local knowledge of craft and knowhow.

photo credit: Jesse Procyshyn

Winnipeg artist, Sara Clark, hosted a two-day workshop on knotting techniques and on how to knot. Armed with this new knowledge, the students crafted their installation on the grounds of SNAC. The hideout explores traditional knotting and weaving techniques as a structural foundation. Without resorting to any rigid, metal joinery systems, such as nails and screws, Murmurate instead employed knotting and traditional textile techniques to explore and develop a system of connections and soft architectonics.

“The site within the forest surrounding St. Norbert Arts Centre was chosen for its unique conglomeration of leaning and straight trees, alluding to sweeping figures and offering opportunities for encasing and elevating. Knotted both on and off site, Murmurate implements anchor hitches, good luck knots, donut knots, square knots, and common whipping.” 

In a manner similar to the murmurating birds, the Installation murmurates as one with nature for an indeterminate period of time as the natural aging process and Nature itself reclaims it. In the meantime, it remains a manifestation of the joy of making and crafting and of the student experience at the University of Manitoba. 

The installation is open to the public.  SNAC is located at 100 rue des Ruines du Monastère, Winnipeg, Manitoba

View CBC Winnipeg coverage of the installation online (Murmurate feature starts at 32min into the programming)

Murmurate Group. (2019). Battuvshin, Nemuulen, Binnun, Oren C., Dyson, Maria J. (Team Leader), Padilla, Charles D., Procyshyn, Jessie, Vinsky, Ashley A., Ashley Peebles, Hyeonji (Angie) Kwon, Lauren Wiebe, Katryna Lipinsky

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