yarn bombing Yarn Classes

In The Media

RTE Nationwide March 2012 - Irene LundgaardLast night I sat quietly and in my own world crocheting. The television was on and all of a sudden I saw what people have been telling me about. I saw my own face on TV.

Some weeks ago there was a feature on The Yarn Room on Nationwide on RTÉ, our national TV station here in Ireland, I featured very very briefly in the piece with very busy crocheting hands and a very big smile. These two items are now part of the trailer for Nationwide! Who would have thought that!

AND I’m in the print media too.

A while back I was approached by the Irish Quilting Magazine as they were featuring The Irish Reef in an article. Our wonderful Hyperbolic Crochet woolly wonder which is currently on display in The Greenhouse, 17 St Andrew’s Street, Dublin 2 where ECO-UNESCO are doing trojan work to educate the masses on all things environmental. As a matter of fact, they are having their ECO-UNESCO Young Environmentalist Awards Showcase and Awards Ceremony next week.

The Greenhouse is a great central place for the Reef to be on display! If you haven’t seen The Irish Reef yet, I strongly encourage you to go and take in the beautiful work of 100 Irish women and a couple of men and learn a bit about geometry, the environment and creative use of crochet at the same time. The Greenhouse is open during normal business hours.

The Irish Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef - Irish Quilting Magazine - by Irene LundgaardMy picture of The Irish Reef featured in
Irish Quilting Magazine

Irene Lundgaard 2012

They also featured my piece of Yarn Graffiti, which I did earlier in the year. I first thought it odd that a Quilting Magazine would do a piece on crochet, but when I thought about it, I realized that Granny Squares actually can only be described as the quilts of crochet and all of a sudden it all made sense in my little mind…

Yarn Grafitti - Irish Quilting Magazine - by Irene Lundgaard Urbanization of the Irish Countryside featured in
Irish Quilting Magazine

Irene Lundgaard 2012

They published my piece of Opinionated Crochet called Urbanization of the Irish Countryside which I had pointed out was the title of my work. However, they seem to have forgotten to include that bit of info in the article…

I also notice that there is now an International Yarnbombing Day on June 9th. It’s interesting how underground movements are eventually adopted by convention.

Being in the media will not pay any bills, so I better get back to my hook as I prepare my classes starting on Tuesday where there are a couple of places left and then I better start working on some patterns that are in the making too.

Hook on, is all I can say!

hyperbolic crochet coral reef

A Colourful Week

This week is turning out to be a riot of colour and I thought I would share a bit of the colours that I have been surrounded by. Who knows, this teaser might just entice you to go and have a look at the pretty exhibition of The Irish Reef, which is created by some 100 people from all over Ireland and which we have just assembled in ‘the greenhouse’ for everyone to enjoy for the next couple of months.

The Irish Reef - Community Reef 3The Community Reef

The Irish Reef - Bleached Reef
The Bleached Reef

The Irish Reef - Toxic Reef
The Toxic Reef

The Irish Reef - Community ReefThe Irish Reef - Community Reef 2
The Community Reef

It is such a privilege to be part of this project. So very many people have put so much work into creating this woolly wonder and each time we put it on display I am humbled by it’s beauty while we try to make each piece shine.

The Irish Reef is on display until September 23rd, 2011 at ‘the greenhouse’, 17 St Andrews Street, Dublin 2. The exhibition is open from 9.30 to 5.00 pm on weekdays. Admission is free. Workshop schedule to follow.

Read about the origins of the project here.


Hyperbolic Space For Charity

The other day a cheerful mail with a photo attached landed in my in-box. It was from the lovely Reefer, Jenny Byrne. Jenny is one of the rock solid core members of The Reefers group that is promoting and not least loving the Irish Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef.

It turned out that Jenny had entered a few photos from our Hyperbolic Crochet Workshop at Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely on the 2nd of October when The Ray D’Arcy Show on TODAY fm organized a fund-raiser for Barnardos with a book of snapshots of life in Ireland on that day. Jenny was talented enough to have one of her pictures selected for inclusion in the book, and this is it.

irish_reef_workshop2b_jennybyrnePhoto by permission from Jenny Byrne
for US 2 book in aid of Barnardos

The caption in the book reads: “Crochet, hyperbolic style. A year ago none of us knew one another. By 2 Oct 2010 over 100 people living all over Ireland had contributed to 2 exhibitions of craft work that included elements of crochet, maths, marine biology and hyperbolic geometry. We held a workshop on 2 Oct in Tinahely, Co Wicklow.”

Isn’t it just amazing how this project is spreading itself hyperbolically? Seeping into all sorts.

On a personal note, I must say that I find it quite amazing that my crochet hook and I are going to be knocking about on very many coffee tables for years to come. We, the people in the picture, will be part of a moment in time captured for posterity and all in aid of the most noble of causes. Well done Jenny!

Note: The book can be bought in all good bookshops in Ireland as well as in Meteor stores countrywide, but the fantastic Kenny’s Bookshop in Tuam Co Galway, stock it in their on-line store and post it out free of charge. Marvellous!

hyperbolic crochet coral reef

The Irish Reef Is Ready For Next Outing

Over the weekend very many very loving hands put The Irish Reef to sleep. It is back in its boxes and ready for a new adventure.

The Irish Reef in Tinahely

I compiled this little video of our beautiful reef during the exhibition at the Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely. The tune playing is called ‘Hyperbolic Guitar’ composed and performed by Dónal, who kindly allowed me to use the tune. Thank you Dónal.

It was such a privilege to have this wonderful exhibition on display at The Courthouse and it was only made possible due to the kindness and the hard work of very many people. Reefers, you know who you are, thank you! The approximately 100 Irish crocheters who created this woolly wonder are shown great gratitude with thanks too! Thanks is also extended to Shelley Hayes and Eamonn Phelan and all the helpful staff at the Courthouse and HUGE thanks is extended to Dave and Kildarson Ltd for sponsoring the printed material, transport and storage boxes as well as general moral support. And then there is the very special thanks that needs to be extended to Dr. Daina Taimina along with Margaret & Christine Wertheim. It is such a privilege to stand on the shoulders of such giants of female brains. And the Science Gallery, always the Science Gallery, who brought this wonderful exhibition to Ireland in the first place.

IMG_7752smallWe hope to find a permanent home for our woolly wonder and we hope to travel it around Ireland too. If you have ideas or contacts at suitable venues for another outing or better still, a permanent home for it, please send a mail to The Reefers Group with the details. You can find the contact details right here, on The Irish Reef blog or send a mail to

hyperbolic crochet coral reef

Hyperbolic Guitar In My House

My home has been taken over by all things hyperbolic. The Irish Reef is under construction and last minute pieces are being crochet for certain places on the baskets – and here was I thinking I had completed my contributions…

A good while back I challenged my husband, Dónal Donohoe, to give writing a piece of hyperbolic music a go. Dónal writes and performs his own music and I thought it would be interesting to hear how an exponential increase would actually sound. He didn’t take the bait at all. As a matter of fact, he did not take the bait of the challenge until he had been at Dr. Daina Taimina’s inspiring talk at the Science Gallery during the early summer,  but he did succumb in the end. Perhaps it was the rhythm of my crocheted hook that lured him in?…

Dónal made a preview of the release available on YouTube which I hope you will enjoy to listen to. For me it was very exciting to hear how the exponential increase would be handled and if it was possible to capture that dimension in sound. And I think he managed while at the same time making a pretty piece of guitar music.

I actually quite love this little tune, particularly because no sampling or other ‘cheats’ were used to captured the hyperbolic dimension. From my crocheters perspective I truly appreciate the craftsmanship that went into actually playing all these many notes acoustically and elegantly manage to convey the space that is hyperbolic in rhythm and sound at the same time. I love when all the important elements of my life fuse into one big whole.

Note: The tune Hyperbolic Guitar is composed and performed by Dónal Donohoe and it can be purchased for download here.

hyperbolic crochet coral reef

Progress Of The Irish Reef

The Reefers are hard at it again, constructing our wonderful hyperbolic crochet. The original Toxic Reef was curated by The Wertheims for their exhibition at The Smithsonian and we were left with no toxic reef at all. However, Irish crocheters rise to a challenge and simply just made another toxic reef.

The Irish Reef reconstructed toxics

Irish crocheters, take a bow. You have created a piece of outstanding art and it is such a privilege to be allowed working with these pretty, clever, fun pieces of crochet. Thank you!

Note: The Irish Reef will be on display at The Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely, Co Wicklow from Sunday September 12th (official opening from 3-5) to October 29th. You can see pictures of the construction here.

hyperbolic crochet coral reef

The Toxic Irish Reef – Take 2

IMG_5314smallToxic hyperbolic crochet is about to peak very soon here as the exhibition of The Irish Reef is opening on Sunday 12th and the setting up of the reef will commence next weekend.

In an effort to have a clear view of the way ahead which is best achieved by crochet methinks, I have combined it with the re-construction of our toxic reef, I have now more or less finished the Hundreds-And-Thousands Of Toxins piece that I have worked on for the last while and I’m now in serious toxic orange hyperbolic doily mode. I am working a cluster of Sainsbury bags with a little frilly edge as an ode to my Great Granny whom I have never met but whose crochet sampler book I have the privilege to have to hand for inspiration.

My hands are starting to speak to me using words like ‘hard’, ‘rest’, ‘strain’ when I work in plarn. I am mindful and only work it a little at a time and very soon my head will be clear and I will see the way forward equally clearly and I will be able to go back to working wool again… Unless the toxic muse has another idea she needs to manifest! We’ll see, for now I am looking forward to seeing our wonderful reef in all her glory out on public display!

Added later: While I continued working on these orange hyperboles I came to realize that my Great Granny would probably not ever have touched a plastic bag. Fascinating thought as she died approximately early to mid 20th century. And a scary thought how much damage we humans have actually managed to do to our planet in one single century. Alarmingly scary, as a matter of fact!