8 Variations on a Diagonal _ Knit 1, Purl … 2008




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Inspired by the traditional craft of knitting, this poetic symmetry in rhythm and texture evokes memories of the past which echo into the future. It carries a new vision of this present life that appeals to the creativity of the open mind. It gives honour to those forgotten values which grew out of hardship, harsh survival, humility, passion and a deep respect for nature and our ancestors land that once formed the strong and personal identity of our great grandmothers authentic folklore. She left us her memory prints: Knit 1, Purl 1.

We were commissioned by the Donegal Arts Office to make this work as an oblique celebration of the long established knitting traditions in Donegal. The original was made for 4 performers, Ursula Mawson-Raffalt, Creator, Choreographer, Director and performer; Maura Logue (Actress and Director of The Abbey Centre), Kathleen Rafferty and Mary King, from a local Active Age group, neither of whom had ever been on stage before.

It was performed and very well received in the Abbey Centre Theatre in Ballyshannon and in the Hawkswell Theatre in Sligo as part of the “Damhsa (DOW sa)” Festival Of Dance

It was sponsored by Edel MacBride Knitwear Ltd, who provided the costumes, and John Molloy Woollens, who provided all of the wool

Due to the unavailability of participants, Ursula Mawson-Raffalt decided to re-make the project as a solo with performances at The Dock, in Carrick on Shannon, sponsored by the Dock and Leitrim County Council, at Dance-House in Dublin and finally at Project Arts Centre in Dublin with additional help in kind from those two venues.