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String Theory: The Art of Olek (Hi-Fructose, Vol. 29)

In their October issue, Vol. 29  Hi-Fructose includes a ten page feature by Nastia Voynovskaya, on  the work of Agata Oleksiak, also known as “Olek.” Originally from Poland, Olek has traveled the world, covering her surrounding environment with her art, bringing everyday objects to life through neon crocheted camouflage. While studying art in New York, Olek began seeing her “craft” as an art in the form of sculpture. “I didn’t know if I crochet the sculpture, if it was gonna be art. I was so scared to show the piece because I studied art [in university] and to me at that time, that wasn’t an art. I was like ‘Why would you call something crochet an art?’ But I had a strong feeling that this was what I was going to be doing.”

Olek’s work is all-encompassing in purpose, serving as both a personal catharsis and a means of communicating with the public: “Everything already exists in the universe, I just have to make it visible for other people, so I have to crochet it to make it visible. I probably should have a psychologist but instead I am sitting and crocheting my life into the pieces.” In her latest work, Russia’s Pride, Olek covered a shopping mall front with her famous camouflage in rainbow colors, spreading the message of love and equal rights, a statement about the current anti-gay laws in Russia. “The truth is always hidden behind something and, as artists, we have to talk about it,” says Olek. “That’s why now I do a lot of text-based pieces on the street. I wanna say something to people.” To read the full article, pick up the issue in stores or online here.

February of 2014 will bring back Olek to the Shooting Gallery for an epic solo show. Rumors of an installation involving a full-sized boat and a yarn-covered sea theme abound. See more images of Olek’s wondrous ways courtesy of Hi-Fructose after the jump.

Screenshot 2013-10-29 at 2.39

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