Thursday, December 30, 2010

@ Platea Project VIII: Tree-Blogging

On Twitter we “retweet.” On Tumblr we “reblog.” On YouTube, videos go “viral” and are often “embedded” into other sites. On Facebook, we “share” others’ words, images, and links. In these ways, discrete works circulate and spread, pushing roots and branches across the Internet.

We also sometimes “remix.” We create mash-ups and digital collages. We rework others’ works into something of our own and share it, knowing that it too may be reworked by someone else. In this way, our creative expressions spur other creative expressions and grow organically, like a tangled hedge, like a tree, like a forest.

For this @Platea project, we plan to investigate the intangible tangibles of connections between art works. We encourage participants to make work out of each other’s work and to create links between sites where these works are shared. We hope to grow a conceptual art tree through reblogging, to fill its branches with the music of retweets, albeit reworked more than simply repeated.


On January 10, we will post some prompting material (sound file, image, text, etc.) to this web site as a trunk. Participants can use this material to branch out and make their own art on their blogs, Twitter accounts, Facebook pages, etc. As the event proceeds, participants can also use the material produced by other participants. Post a link-forward to your work in the comments section of the participating site(s) where you borrowed inspiration material. In posting your work at your site, include a link-back to the inspiration material.

With the obvious exception of Twitter (or other microblogging sites), where you post your work should include a comments section, preferably one that allows active hyperlinks. This will allow any folks who use your work to post a link-forward to their re-working. In Twitter (and similar microblogging sites), the reply function will be the best way of indicating link-forward, although a shortened URL could be included in the Tweet for a link-back.

If you are planning to use Facebook, LinkedIn, Ravelry, or other restricted social networking sites, you can include information for joining your network in the comments below. Or, if you prefer, you can allow branches/roots to cross into your private domain and disappear from public view. This happens all the time with real trees, right?

Your work can be in any media that you can share on-line: text-based, image, video, sound, or any combination of these. How you “sample” the inspiration materials or others’ works is completely up to you, from mash-ups to meditations. If you take the branch/root in a puzzling “new” direction, that is great!


To the best of our ability, we will attempt to map the growing network of linked works. Our plan is to produce an interactive map that will allow users to link directly to the work being produced while also demonstrating the connections between works. As with all cartography, we expect some discrepancies between the map and the territory.

Event Dates: Monday, January 10 to Friday, January 14.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Following up: Sorry We Couldn't Be There!

Couldn't go to Miami? Neither could we.  After an open call for video submissions, we received 16 videos from around the world from artists who couldn't attend Art Basel Miami Beach (and two who could but still wanted to join us!).  The video was screened at SEVENMiami in the Winkleman Gallery space, as part of Jennifer Dalton and William Powhida's #rank.

We received a very positive response to this piece, and it was definitely one of my favorites.  I had drinks recently with Christi Nielsen, and we talked about the power of video, how it really puts a face to the names we've been tweeting with all this time.  The art "world" is much larger and more geographically diverse than the major art centers, and hopefully this video was successful in bringing that out.

Many thanks to all our amazing performers!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Project VII: Sorry I Couldn't Be There

Downtown Miami HDR
Image courtesy mbshane on Flickr

Love art? We do.  Always wanted to go to the Miami art fairs?  We have, too.  Can't go, though?  Yeah, us too.

This month, Miami is once again opening its doors for the contemporary art world to swoop in and look at, discuss and purchase art.  Jennifer Dalton and William Powhida, organizers of the very popular #class earlier this year, are organizing yet another event to critique and comment on the nature of the contemporary art world.  #rank, situated in the Winkleman Gallery's SEVEN Miami booth, will feature a host of events, including one with @Platea's own Joanie San Chirico.

What a sad puppy?
Image courtesy Cameron Bennett on Flickr

But what about those who can't attend?  @Platea has an answer for you all!  Attend virtually through video.  Here's the scoop:
* Interested? Sign up below so we can get a general sense of who's participating.

* Record a 5-10 second video of yourself saying: - Hi, my name is______ . I live in______. Sorry I couldn't come to Miami. I had to_________

 - eg: "Hi, my name is An Xiao.  I live in Los Angeles.  Sorry I couldn't come to Miami.  It's way over there, and I'm way over here, and... you know."
* Then send me ( the video file via or (preferred), ensuring it's no larger than 20 MB.  The format I would prefer would be .mov or .mp4, but I can accept other formats.

* I'll then line up the videos into one giant video and place it on Vimeo and send to the #rank organizers.  The video will play on loop throughout the course of the Miami show.

* Send your video to (no attachments please!) by Saturday, November 20.  Please let us know if you have any questions!

Ultimately, the video will highlight concerns around geographic access and about who's left out during these large art fairs.  For too long, the influential art centers have been located in major metropolitan regions such as New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Paris, London, Beijing and Seoul.  We want to highlight the parts of the world where artists are working.

Monday, August 2, 2010

#FlatAnvatar's Journey

Here's a compilation of the trek that #FlatAnvatar made going from NYC to LA. Map courtesy of @platea member Christi Nielsen.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Adventures of #FlatAnvatar

@Platea's founder, An Xiao is embarking on a new adventure. She's moving from New York to Los Angeles where she'll be attending Art Center College of Design in Pasadena in the fall. To ease her transition from East to West Coast, the members of the group concocted a fun performance showing #FlatAnvatar on her very roundabout travels across the country with some unexpected side trips. So far, Flat An has been to places in England, Rome, Paris, and all over the US.

Here are a few photos of her stops so far:

Flat An started out on the High Line in New York City.

Here's Flat An in a poppy field in Sussex, England.

Flat An was seen hitchhiking in Adirondack State Park, in Upstate NY.

Flat An waiting to get a tour of the Louvre, Paris, France.

There's no telling where Flat An will pop up next, so stay tuned. You can follow her travels either by using the hashtag #FlatAnvatar on Twitter, or on the @Platea flickr page.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Mrs Miniver and the #Plateaknits by Ingrid Murnane

No, it's not a new band...

Remember #plateaknit? Remember that I said that I would knit a full-instruction scarf from the archive of #plateaknit tweets?

Well, I did. Then I was asked to exhibit it and the other items which I'd made too.

I currently have an exhibition on at Prick Your Finger which is a brilliant and quirky yarn and haberdashery shop in Bethnal Green in London.

I'm showing both the Mrs Miniver series of socks which talk about relationships between people, and also the final pieces from the #plateaknit performance in January.

Setting up the Plateaknits © Giles Babbidge Photography

I went up to London last Wednesday to put the show up with lots of help from Giles who was also kind enough to document it all for me. Rachael and Louise and their shop staff were lovely and made us very welcome with cups of tea throughout the day and put on a great private view in the evening.

Mrs Miniver and the Plateaknits © Giles Babbidge Photography

The exhibition is on for the rest of April, with the #plateaknits in the window, so if you are in London, please do visit and let me know what you think.

As always, you can follow @platea on Twitter and Facebook and take part in discussions on Ravelry too. Check back on the blog soon for details of our coming performances!

PS My lovely chap, Giles took all of the photographs for me. Please do visit his blog here.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

participant view, by Nikki

My participation in #plateaknit has made me think specifically about a few key things, but not limited to; nostalgia, stratification, interpretation and networking/collaboration.

Nostalgia: I come from a large family of knitters however don’t knit myself. It was something I always wanted to do as a kid; but as the only left-handed person in a whole family of right-handed people; as you can imagine the attempted teaching/learning became a source of frustration for all concerned. We used to all congregate at my Grandparents house on the weekends and there didn’t seem to be a weekend in my formative years that brightly coloured yarns - with symbolic tin cans - didn’t connect us all in some form. It seemed to me that the ability to make something from wool was akin to a rite of passage in our family and I would experiment with other ways of forming yarn into objects so as not to miss out on the experience altogether. I still think of knitting as quite mystical yet at the same time social and have fond memories of garments and toys that were created during that time.

I also feel that the resurgent interest in handcrafted items (I include knitting in this broad category) is partially driven by nostalgia. Many environmental (and also in some part economic) concerns have driven me personally to seek alternatives to mass-produced items, preferring to opt for something a little more unique, or thoughtful, when considering gift options.

Stratification: I’m interested in archaeological matrices and their formation through palimpsests of data, which bears an interesting correlation (I feel) to a crowd sourced knitting pattern. As assemblages of cultural and environmental information stratify in an archaeological record you could perhaps view this as mega-tweets of social instruction/trends overlapping each other as displayed in some of the pics of #plateaknit pieces on the @Platea Flickr pool. I hadn't really considered the application of archaeological process to an artistic endeavor before, but its certainly something I'll give a bit more thought to on the back of this project.

Interpretation: I was fascinated to watch how the reader interpreted the data presented to them and translated it to fit within their working model, particularly when both literal and metaphorical instructions were provided. All the makers involved in this project produced very distinct pieces from basically the same instructions. But then, I do still have a childlike awe for knitting viewing it as alchemy!

Networking and collaboration: With so many social networking sites opening up greater avenues for exploring many crafts/arts/hobbies it only takes minutes to find a community of people from all over the world happy to share their knowledge with the uninitiated or those rediscovering a forgotten passion. With this too comes an increase in collaborative ventures that, I feel, strengthens not only our relationships with each other but gives us a greater visualisation for what we can achieve as individuals. For example, through the work of the collaborators on this project – and in deed a great many friends whom I see (in person) regularly - I’ve been inspired to have another shot at knitting!

(apologies for the lack of pictures with this text)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

#plateaknit: the aftermath! by Ingrid Murnane

#Plateaknit Wristwarmers by Ingrid Murnane

Well, it has been a month since #plateaknit took place and I'm only now feeling able to wrap it up. I must admit to having had total knitting burnout, not to mention writer's block over the project. Five intensive days of knitting, knitting, knitting for hours took the fun out of it, to be honest. But eventually, as with all things, it worked itself out and here I am again.

If you missed it at the time, or if you would like to follow the entire performance and knit or make something from the tweets, you can visit the hashtag vault for #plateaknit, archived on twapperkeeper.

From 25th-29th January, @platea's Project 6, #plateaknit took place. The idea was to perform #plateaknit by crowdsourcing knitting instructions and make up designs via the Twitter hashtag #plateaknit. There were two types of participants in #plateaknit: instructors and makers. @Platea asked the instructors to use the hashtag #plateaknit when they gave the makers abbreviated knitting instructions in a tweet. These were be picked up by the makers and incorporated into the piece they were knitting, or making in some other way. Although we primarily made use knitting abbreviations, it was important that makers used whatever media they liked to interpret and perform.

That is all very well on paper, but how did it work in practice?

I performed #plateaknit as both an instructor and a maker. The project gave myself and others the freedom to instruct in uncommon ways and without necessarily knowing how others would interpret it or indeed if they would at all. Due to none of us knowing how the finished items would turn out, the conventional order of succession of the pattern, and even the usual abbreviations within the language of a knitting pattern were suspended. Several things stood out from the volley of instructions given across Twitter. As well as the conventional knitting recipes tweeted, there were instructions which pertained to transient events which even now are no longer current and that may in the future defy easy explaination or interpetation. The two main examples were Apple's launching the iPad and the UK's Iraq Inquiry. These gave rise to tweets such as:

#plateaknit INSTRUCTION wrap & turn (a short row) when anyone in your twitter stream mentions #Blair #IraqInquiry


#plateaknit kfb every time someone tweets about the Apple tablet (@thatwaszen)

Detail of #plateaknit project by Ingrid Murnane

The temporal nature of the project came out again in the use by @InnBrooklyn of instructions to be interpreted first via morse code and then knitting. Knitting into your hat what you had for lunch on a given day will change whenever you knit this, but unlike our interest in Tony Blair's apparant misdoings, lunch remains a constant. There was also the option of ReTweeting an instruction at will, in order to repeat it:

RT @Bungy32: Weave an 8" bit of yarn into the next 9 stitches. Let leftover tails dangle on RS of piece. RT this instr. to repeat. #plateaknit

I felt that the instructions given by those who were not knitters were particularly interesting. Although some did make use of 'conventional' abbreviations, most gave us rather more out-there tweets including @newcurator's 'knitting interlude' the results of which you can see on his site.

Hello #plateaknit crew! For the next row only: close yr eyes & trust yr inner-knitter (@sortingtrolley)

Plateaknit2 by joaniesanchirico. Used under Creative Commons licence.

...and how did all of this translate when making something from it.
As knitters we are used to following a pattern: this was DIFFERENT. Oh yes. In being a maker, I dipped in and out of the feed, as and when I was on twitter. I knitted for about 5-6 hours each of the five days and ended up making two hats, some wrist-warmers and starting a full-instruction scarf too. Initially I had chosen two greens as my base colours and knitted predominently with them. Changing colours when instructed, adding and subtracting stitches and yarns, and interpreting others' instructions as I pleased. I did wonder though, whether my instructions were being influenced by what I was making, rather than the other way around. For instance, I fancied a bit of zing in my hat, so I tweeted an instruction to 'make the next five rows sparkle'. I'm not sure whether that matters or not either.

There were a lot of scarves knitted from the instructions and a long, flat item does lend itself to the instructions rather well: much like a visual print-out.

#plateaknit scarf by itsokadascat. Used under Creative Commons licence.

@_randomthoughts made a great interpretation of the tweets in her drawing, below.

'Hat' by wecome_to_my_own_little_piece_of_heaven. Used under Creative Commons licence.

I think that Christi Nielsen summed up the project best of all when she described her #plateaknitting as 'a roadmap, of sorts, of your tweets the last few days'.

I'd like to extend my thanks to all participants in #plateaknit, both instructors and makers, and say a big thanks you to An Xiao for letting me be the first resident for @Platea Project Space.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

#Plateaknit Performers, by Ingrid Murnane

Magic Loop by InnyNaney on Flickr

In order to get the best out of an @platea performance, each performer needs to follow the others. This is especially important in #plateaknit for getting your instructions as a maker and also for seeing what the makers are doing with the instructions.

Below are the performers so far, and it isn't too late to sign up now: we will add you into the list and make announcements of new performers via the @platea Twitter feed as we go along (so be sure to follow us too!).

The Performers

Brooklynne: Instructor: @grrlshapedyarns

CassieLouise: Instructor: @CassieLouise

Ingrid Murnane: Instructor and Maker: @InnyM

Jonny: Instructor and Maker: @bungy32

Yael David: Maker: @yberryfurrealz

Brenda: Maker and possibly Instructor: @brendadada

Dawn: Maker: @dlad2002

Joanie San Chirico: Maker: @joanie_s_c

Betsy Mitchell Henning: Maker: @FunkyFatGirl

D: Instructor: @sortingtrolley

Jim: Maker: @RaggedJ

Neene: Maker: @_randomthoughts

Talia: Instructor: @innbrooklyn

Amy: Instructor: @plainsight

An Xiao: Instructor: @thatwaszen

Lisa Risager: Maker: @risager

Glenda Greenhouse: Instructor: @G_Greenhouse

Elseline: Maker: @ElselineT

NewCurator: Instructor: @NewCurator

Aaron Chen: Instructor: @clockity

Christi Nielsen: Instructor and Maker: @christinielsen

Runfox: Instructor: @Runefox

Amy Barnes: Maker: @dr_amyjaneb

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Ideas for #plateaknit Instructions and How to Use Them, by Ingrid Murnane

In a follow up to my last post, here are some basic knitting abbreviations and an explaination of how to use them. There are also some other instructor/maker ideas to help you in #plateaknit.


K = knit

P = purl

These are the two basic stitches. Tell us how many stitches you’d like us to knit or purl like this: k15 or p4.

You can also make a set of instructions as follows: k2, p6, k2, p6, k to end of row.

You can specify the number of rows that we need to knit like this for as well, by adding (for three rows) or suchlike.

If you’d like something repeated, do it following a formula something like this: (k2, p3) 5 times

You can do more than just get us to make patterns with the knit and purl stitches. You can ask us to increase or decrease the amount of stitches in a number of ways, make eyelet holes, ask us to change colours, turn the knitting round and go the other direction or make a buttonhole.

Increase stitches

m1 = make one by picking up and knitting a stitch between two other stitches

kfb = knit front and back

yo = yarn over

yf = yarn forward

Decrease stitches

k2tog = knit two stitches together

p2tog = purl two stitches together

ssk = slip two stitches knitwise, transfer them back and knit them together

Other things to do

Eyelets: yo k2tog = makes an eyelet

Buttonholes: specify the number of stitches width eg: bh5

Change direction: as it says, turn the knitting and work back the other way (as in short row shaping)

Change colours: to make stripes or coloured patterns

Change needle sizes (to larger or smaller ones)

There are many more things you can do in knitting than just these, but these basics should help both the instructors and makers in the performance.

Knitting by InnyNaney on Flickr.

Here are some great examples of ways that you could incorporate knitting instructions into your tweets (with thanks to my fellow Steering Committee member Jonny Gray!)

Tweet01: sl1, k1 *m1, p2, k2tog, p1* (repeat from * three times) k to end #plateaknit

Tweet02: Do two rows in the color you are currently working with then change to something (more) green. #plateaknit

Tweet03: Change one of your needles up three sizes #plateaknit

Tweet04: Add five stitches to your next row in any way of your choosing #plateaknit

Tweet05: Bind (cast) off and start a new piece. #plateaknit

Tweet06: Do the next five rows in a k2, p2 rib. #plateaknit

Tweet07: Over as many rows as you choose, reduce the row to ten stitches wide then expand back to the original number of stitches in the row. #plateaknit

Tweet08: Do a short row of half the number of stitches in your current row. #plateaknit

Tweet09: Weave in a length of packaging twine into part of a row. Leave at least 6 inches of twine dangling on the RS of the piece at both ends of the weave. #plateaknit

Tweet10: Repeat the last instruction five times. #plateaknit

Tweet11: Make it shine! #plateaknit

Of course the makers could also, in the spirit of Lee Meredith’s Game Knitting choose not to use any of the ‘instruction’ tweets as direct instructions and instead do something (for example knit an eyelet or change colours) whenever a particular word such as ‘and’ or ‘row’ is mentioned in a tweet or when somebody talks about food. It really is up to you how off the wall you want to make it! Basically, makers will interpret instructions to the best of their abilites, including (if they choose) interpreting any part of an instruction tweet as additional guides.

Whatever you do with it, however simple or complicated you want to make it, just have fun!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

PlateaKnit -- Thinking about Knitworks

About five years ago, as the result of an inspired if chancy Christmas gift from my partner, I learned how to knit.  After three days of cussing at yarn and needles, I finally taught myself the basics.  From there, my learning curve was steep.  More than just an avocational distraction, I found knitting (and later crochet) stimulates my thinking about a variety of academic projects as well as my participation in on-line communities.  Maybe it's the time involved in meditative looping and counting and maintaining a consistent tension that frees the mind to wander and make associations; maybe there's something deeply metaphysical about careful and planned manipulation of strand into fabric into garment.

So, I was very excited when a member of @Platea proposed a project involving knitting from a crowdsourced pattern generated on Twitter.  Ingrid Murnane's project not only intrigues me as a knitter, but also as an artist and academic who spends considerable time thinking about art and communities.  Several themes emerge for me as I contemplate the Plateaknit project and the link between knitting and on-line networks.  This is by no means an exhaustive list.  In fact, as with all performance inquiry, I look forward to our adding to and modifying this list as we engage in the project.

1) Networks/Knitworks -- As a textile craft, knitting (like crochet and weaving) is about creating a material network of fibers in a lattice.  The kind of free-form knitting this project prefers (in crochet, sometimes called "scrumbling") is even more like the organic, chaotic networks of folks linked by the internet, (in Network Theory,  sometimes called mesh networks).  And if the net is still predominantly text-based, it is worth remembering that "text" and "textile" are etymologically linked.  (Hey, we don't call it a "web" for nothing!)  It is also worth remembering that the computers we use to have this discussion owe their data processing origins, in part, to the textile industry of weaving.

2) DiY Aesthetics -- Performance Studies folks have been talking a lot about this idea lately -- the idea of media and art production done outside traditional institutions and training for such, and often not for any kind of financial gain.  The concept borrows a bit from the logic of the potlach and economies of gift-giving.  In explaining the DiY aesthetic, my partner (a fellow Performance Studies scholar) and I often reference our knitting and crochet practices:  we make scarves and hats for the pleasure of making them and then enjoy giving them away.  The joy is a product made by the hand of someone you know and not simply bought or manufactured in institutionalized systems of exchange.  In an increasingly globalized culture of consumerism, knitting (among other arts/crafts) at the very least expresses a desire for something other than the mass produced.  (Although, admittedly, there is plenty about knitting that supports commodity fetishism -- as a proliferation of specialty stores, expensive yarns, and my colossal fiber cache demonstrate.)

3) Social Knitworking -- If is any indication (and it is not alone in this), the relatively recent revitalization of knitting has benefited significantly from social networking.  Blogs and social networking sites abound for sharing knitting resources and projects.  Several folks have even taken advantage of webcams to produce (really helpful!) tutorial videos.  This is the sort of hobby/art/craft that seems to thrive in and form non-geographically-bound, interest-based communities.

4) Specialized Codes -- I think the specialized abbreviations of knitting instructions (easily one of the most frustrating aspects of learning to knit) are a lot like the specialized abbreviations used in text messages and character-constrained micro-blogging.  Both endure a certain amount of push-back from folks who find such abbreviation alienating and unnecessary.  And yet, in both cases, there are similar motivations for the abbreviations.  For texting and micro-blogging, character limits and numeric keypads necessitated the organic development of abbreviations.  For knitting, abbreviations first showed up in newspapers that limited the column inches available for craft instructions.  In both cases, these abbreviations have found their way into discourse less constrained by need for such efficiency.

5) But is it Art? -- Finally, at a time when digital art and social networking performance events still (occasionally) suffer derisive dismissal by established "fine" arts practitioners, knitting offers a practice similarly caught in categorical debates between "craft" and "art."  Certainly, there are textile artists who use knitting to make soft sculptures, and for some this leads to a tension between knitting for practical use and knitting for an art object.  Nonetheless, it is rare that knitting finds its way into a regular part of the the Fine Arts curriculum.  A potentially interesting alchemy occurs when we mix the two forms -- one relatively new, one relatively old, and both viewed with some skepticism by the Keepers of the Canon.

With these thoughts looping back on each other in my mind, I find myself eager for the needles and tweets that will weave this next @Platea project.  

(Posted by Jonny Gray, a.k.a. Bungy32.  All illustrations in this post created by me.)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Project VI: PlateaKnit. 25th-29th January, by Ingrid Murnane

I’m a knitter. Any of you who follow me on Twitter will know this: sometimes it might seem that it is all I go on about. There are a few of us who are on the @platea Steering Committee who also knit, so really it was only a matter of time before there was a knit-related performance.

I’ve been thinking for a while about combining social networking and knitting more than I do already, by crowd sourcing tweets to make a knitting pattern. I thought that I would decide on a basic pattern to follow, perhaps for a hat or scarf, but would receive the instructions for any other details from my twitter followers. It’s something which I’ve sort of done before, with the aid of a few friends, but not on such a scale.

I mentioned it to An Xiao and the rest of the @platea Steering Committee and although not all knitters they thought it could be an exciting idea to try out over Twitter. So here goes!

Tension Squares by InnyNaney. Used under Creative Commons License.

The Project Details

The performance will take place on 25th – 29th January on Twitter only.

You can take part in two ways this time: as an instructor and as a maker. We will ask the instructors to use the hashtag #plateaknit when they give the makers abbreviated knitting instructions in a tweet. These will be picked up by the makers and incorporated into the piece they are knitting. Although we will be making use of knitting abbreviations, makers can use whatever media they like to interpret and perform: perhaps your drawing or photography could be influenced by the knitting pattern instructions?

If you do decide to knit, you can either cast on a number of stitches to work from as a base and follow the instructions to make a freeform piece of work, or use a garment as the basis for your performance. Simple things will work better for this such as scarves, shawls and basic hats. It doesn’t matter what kind of yarn or needles you use either. As with all making, there will be a certain amount of personal interpretation of any instructions to fit what you are making.

Knitting Round the Table by InnyNaney. Used under Creative Commons License.

It will of course be possible to search the #plateaknit hashtag in order to see the whole pattern as it grows, and to follow the instructions in their entirety, but it will also work if you dip in and out of the feed. We have @platea performers on many continents and in opposite time zones, so we won’t all receive the tweets at a time appropriate to us. You may choose to follow just one or two people’s tweeted instructions, to only participate when you see an instruction telling you to do a certain thing (e.g., make an eyelet) or just go completely freeform and dip in and out of the main instruction pattern whenever you are online. It is entirely up to you: that’s the fun of it. We will all come up with completely different interpretations of the pattern instructions, which makes such a diversion from the traditional process of following a knitting pattern.

Knitting Abbreviations, you say?

For those of you who are not familiar with knitting abbreviations, I will be posting a good basic selection of instructions and ideas with notes on how to use them on the blog shortly for your use. Here are a couple of examples of what might be used, though:

Tweet 01: sl1, k1 *m1, p2, k2tog, p1* (repeat from * three times) k to end #plateaknit

Tweet 02: Do two rows in the colour you are currently working with then change to something (more) green. #plateaknit

Tweet 03: Change one of your needles up three sizes. #plateaknit

Tweet 04: Add five stitches to your next row in any way of your choosing #plateaknit

Tweet 05: Bind (cast) off and start a new piece. #plateaknit

Tweet 06: Do the next five rows in a k2, p2 rib. #plateaknit

Tweet 07: Make it shine! #plateaknit

Don’t be startled with all the lingo if you’re not a knitter: some makers might like to interpret the instructions differently, instead doing something (for example knitting an eyelet, changing needle sizes or switching to blue paint) whenever a particular word such as ‘and’ or ‘row’ is mentioned in a tweet or when somebody tweets about food. This is kind of like Lee Meredith’s Game Knitting concept, if you’re familiar with it.

Basically, makers will interpret instructions to the best of their abilities, including (if they choose) interpreting any part of an instruction tweet as additional guides. It really is up to you how off the wall you want to make this performance. Whatever you do with it, however simple or complicated you want to make it, just have fun!

If you are a knitter and are on Ravelry, then we will be documenting it there on our, and also on the @platea Facebook fan page. You can add your works in progress (WIPs) to the @platea Flickr pool throughout the week and we will feature some on the blog too. Of course, be sure to follow us on Twitter.

We are also planning a series of blog posts in the two weeks after the performance featuring the final articles that you’ve made. I would love to see what you’ve made and additionally read some commentary about how you have interpreted the instructions. It would be great to hear from knitters and non-knitters; instructors and makers, alike. I am going to knit up something with the full instructions which may take a while longer than the performance lasts, as well as knitting something smaller in real-time, and this final piece will be shown here on the @platea blog and will also be available as a pattern on the online knitting magazine, knitonthenet in the near future.

Hope that you are able to join us.

Please do sign up below in the comments as either an instructor, a maker or both.