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Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky

Tiger Lily, 2011. Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky

Tiger Lily, 2011. Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky

Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky, talented self-taught American artist, born in the Soviet Union. Biologist by education (Brown University), Tatyana Yanishevsky reproduces anatomically correct botanical forms created out of yarn, in her studio in Providence, Rhode Island. Her featured artwork “The Knit Garden” includes hand-knitted flowers and plants, created in a variety of fibers, colors, and stitches. The reality of knitted plants is seen in various organs of the plant, and the knitting process, stitch by stitch, conceptually mimics plant growth. And, her sculptures vary – in scale and range, in form and style, and from realistic to abstract. As a matter of fact, these beautiful realistic knitted flowers is a result of the deep knowledge of the subject. Besides, the artist taught herself how to knit, dissected flowers and studied their anatomy in textbooks and greenhouses. As Tatyana Yanishevsky says, “It was a knitting challenge to create those forms, to have them be three-dimensional and puffed out where they needed to be”.

Tiger Lily, 2011

Tiger Lily, 2011. Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky

The hanging “Tiger Lily” is 5 feet in diameter with six mottled yellow petals that curl all the way back in full bloom and have a cable-knit stitch down their length. “When I’m doing anatomical pieces, I look to the plant for reference, and lilies have parallel lines on their petals,” Tatyana Yanishevsky explains. She used cables to create the channels and wove in varying shades of yellow. The big bobbles that represent the lily’s characteristic black spots are a favorite of hers.

Tatyana Yanishevsky is a very creative person. Much of her time is spent knitting, bending and welding metal, embroidering, building pulley systems, wiring simple circuits, installing stoves, singing, testing software, counting fish, dancing, and napping.

Tatyana Yanishevsky also took pleasure in making two versions of a swamp pink, a native flower that is a threatened species and that the garden recently installed in its newly expanded Native Flora Garden, with roots made of polyester resin and different materials and stitching for each model. In a bit of serendipity, one of them was placed under the room’s heating vents, and the forced air moves the leaves like they are swaying in the breeze.

The exhibition, “Knit, Purl, Sow,” features knitted floral and plant inspired works by the artists Tatyana Yanishevsky, Ruth Marshall and Santiago Venegas, on view in the Steinhardt Conservation Gallery through Jan. 22.

Realistic flowers knitted by Tatyana Yanishevsky

Tatyana Yanishevsky