Making the Hair Lock – Intimate Transgressions project


3. Hair lock dark blue copy


When knitting with your own DNA you have to allow yourself to be flexible because you know the material isn’t always perfect. Different hairs have different tensile and elastic qualities. In fact, I often find myself working with a single strand that is partially grey and hard and wiry and the other part is very fine and soft with some degree of elasticity. In a way the process of working with this material forces you to be gentle and patient with yourself, it is a good personal exercise.


Below is a short film talking a little about the Hair Lock and Chain and reflections on the exhibition for which this work was made. Many thanks to David Muskett and his macro lens and the magic dust he sprinkled on a super swift edit.


Alternative video link

I have continued to collect……….


I have continued to collect my hair for more than 2 years since I knitted the Hair Skull for an exhibition Walls and Borders.(Irish Wave 2013) Although I wasn’t planning to knit anything as these projects take up a long time, I had the material available when I was asked if I wanted to make a work for Intimate Transgressions.


6. Hair lock early stage1. Crocheting chain stitch for key hole copy

“Intimate Transgressions” opens up a dialogue and reflects on the global and historical view on violence against women, particularly during times of war and conflict. IT is a multi-media international contemporary art exhibition which encompasses a series of concurrent talks & workshops.

It will open in New York at the White Box on 3September 2015 and subsequently tour in Beijing (preview on 25 October) and Shanghai (preview on 21 November). In 2016 it will tour Europe before returning to venues in Mexico and the USA.

Please visit The Intimate Transgressions website which has a huge amount of information on the project itself and the impressive selection of participating artists.

click here for Intimate Transgressions project


Participating Artists: 
Andi Arnovitz (Israel), A.N.V.I.L. Art Collective (USA),  Niamh Cunningham (Ireland) Regina José Galindo (Guatemala), Anita Glesta (Australia/USA), Fion Gunn (Ireland), Nermine Hammam (Egypt), Selja Kameric (Bosnia & Herzegovina), Oswaldo Maciá (Colombia), Teresa Margolles (Mexico), Elahe Massoumi (Iran/USA), Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo (Cuba), Chen Meitsen Taiwan/France), Chen Qingqing (China), Atsuko Nakamura (Japan), Yoshiko Shimada (Japan), Gail Ritchie (NI), Xin Song (China), Michael Lisle-Taylor (UK), Ma Yanling (China), Gao Yuan (Taiwan/USA), Jelena Tomasević (Montenegro)

2. Hair lock  copy