Bringing together more than 1,600 people from all over Southwestern Pennsylvania, Knit the Bridge wrapped the downtown Andy Warhol Bridge in colorful quilts during the summer of 2013. The grassroots community “yarn bomb” was the largest of its kind in the United States, celebrating Pittsburgh’s exciting contemporary arts scene during the Fiberart International exhibition with more than 580 knit panels covering the iconic bridge. From retirees in Cranberry to professors in Shaler to teen boys in the North Side, Knit the Bridge united the region regardless of age, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, neighborhood or even knitting ability, creating a fun, bright and beautiful project organized by the Fiberarts Guild of Pittsburgh and project manager Amanda Gross.
“Being inclusive means that anyone can come along and shape the project. That can be tricky sometimes, but that’s really what made it happen, because it wouldn’t have happened if there weren’t thousands of people participating.” – Amanda Gross
After the installation was decommissioned in September 2013, the project moved into its final phase, laundering and donating the hundreds of knit panels to regional homeless shelters women’s shelters, nursing homes and animal shelters to be used as blankets and scarves. The project, supported in part through a Sprout Seed Award of $8,000, made headlines all over the world, uniting thousands and bringing the city and its arts community the recognition it deserves.
Knit the Bridge, a project of the Fiberarts Guild of Pittsburgh, was a grassroots community arts project that brings together the many neighborhoods of Southwestern Pennsylvania to create a huge, aesthetically stunning, fiberart installation on the iconic Andy Warhol Bridge. As an outreach project of Fiberart International 2013, Knit the Bridge celebrated the history of Pittsburgh as a city of bridges along with our region’s exciting contemporary arts scene, inviting residents from all over the city to knit panels to “yarn bomb” the bridge. Committed to inclusion, Knit the Bridge strived to represent the full range of Pittsburgh’s diversity, regardless of age, ethnicity, gender identity, different abilities, sexual orientation or neighborhood, creating a fun, bright, beautiful way to celebrate the public spaces that belong to all of us.