A bit about knit – and me

I am Monika Haeussler-Goeschl and I joined this group a couple of months ago.

I specialized in knit during university and I think this choice suits me well. Although I use other techniques in my work as well I keep coming back to knitting. Through knitting I can construct my own surface through a continuous line, a continuous thread. It feels a bit like Ariadne’s thread, a thread through which I can think and express myself. Although there are quite some limitations when knitting, because it usually is just one continuous thread, it challenges me and I enjoy finding solutions for what I would like to express.

I enjoy also different knitting techniques. I love the soothing effect of hand knitting, but I like also the technical possibilities of machine knitting. 

‘now’, machine knit

My themes are mostly personal. I do enjoy to explore the themes of life, the situations I am in, the aspects of change throughout life. I often start research either by photos expressing a mood or situation, or by investigating a word or a phrase. These investigations lead me on to further ideas to express my thoughts and feelings.

Research ‘hanging by a thread’

The making process is very important for me. I do express myself through my hands, and the hands are like a part of my brain. They are much more intuitive than my brain, and the older I get the more I trust the spontaneous wisdom of my hands.

Although I was fascinated at university by the technical abilities of digital knitting machines, I keep coming back to work manually, whether by machine or not.

It feels right to connect to the past by a traditional technique like knitting, combined with new ways of using this technique. 

Detail of ‘Boro’, machine and hand knit, Indigo dyes, stitched

Materials inspire me a lot, I love experimenting with all kinds of materials. I like to explore their individual capabilities and characteristics and I aim to use them in innovative ways or combinations. 

Material speaks to the maker and has its own language in the way it behaves.

Anni Albers puts it in this way: 

‘What I am trying to get across is that material is a means of communication. 

That listening to it, not dominating it makes us truly active, that is:

 to be active, be passive.’

Two examples with different materials:

Horsehair crochet, sample
Sample with paper knit, print and laser cut

Colour often comes to my work at a later stage, after I decided on the material and the technique. But occasionally it also comes first, sometimes a full palette of it. 

Colour sample of my MA work ‘in between’

I try to stay open to ‘faults’ and mishaps, because often they trigger new ideas. 

I value the aesthetics of Wabi Sabi, the beauty of the unfinished, imperfect and incomplete is close to me.

Detail of stitching, ‘unfinished’

I am happy to reconnect to the UK by becoming a member of Quinary12 and I am excited to take part in the groups’ future activities. It is a valuable experience to be part of this group to get feedback and share ideas, and to see how fellow members work. It is always fascinating to see the individual approach of each member, their personal way of working

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