Photo by Thelma Uranga (Sugar Skull by Vivian Ramos, Concha by Hoa Ly-Dominguez, Left flower by Angelo Dindia and Right flower by Naomi Martinez)

El Stitch y Bitch

Entre Estambre y Tejidos Recordamos a los Muertitos

With Yarn and Crafts we Remember those who have Passed

Vida Breve: Day of the Dead 2010
Friday, September 10 – Monday, December 13, 2010
Opening reception (Free): Friday, September 10th. From 6:00 – 8:30pm

Chicago, IL – El Stitch y Bitch (SYB) creates altar “Entre Estambre y Tejidos Recordamos a los Muertitos” as part of Vida Breve: Day of the Dead 2010 exhibit at the National Museum of Mexican Art (NMMA).
The altar (9ft. x 5ft. x7ft.) conceptualized by SYB founder Thelma Uranga is a knit, crochet, and embroidered ofrenda in celebration of their “crafty” ancestors.
El Stitch y Bitch, a diverse group of Chicago crafters, have spent the entire summer working on this handmade installation. The group divided themselves into crochet and knit teams; papel picado, sugar skulls and marigold flowers. Over a hundred marigold flowers will be on display, along with candles, fruits and vegetables, and bread (conchas).

Uranga, who has been knitting for three years, was inspired to create an altar for her late grandmother Carmen “Carmelita” Padilla, a devout crafter. During Uranga’s childhood visits to Texas, her abuela Carmelita would often have knit/crochet gifts and at one point attempted to teach her the art. Uranga remembers that visit vividly, “I was holding the hook and making the chains while she was working on a project, she patiently showed me the steps.” It is memories like these that inspired writer, Irasema Gonzales’ poem The Chains That Join. An excerpt of the poem is prominently featured on the wall as the connecting link to the framed pictures of their deceased loved ones by SYB contributing artists.

Hands remember

heart invokes

hook and pull, hook and pull

This is the chain that joins

hook and pull you to your sister,

hook and pull you to your niece,

hook and pull you to me.

Contributing Artists
Adriana Baltazar
Laura Barba
Prudence Browne
Paulina Camacho
Jonathan Chacon
Laura Anaya Dindia
Angelo Dindia
Irasema Gonzalez
Erika Hernandez
Elidia Anaya Leal
Hoa Ly-Domnguez
Naomi Martinez
Karla Olvera
Jackie Orozco
Jessica Phillips
Vivian Ramos
Rossie Rangel-Shcwartz
Juana Reyes
Elvia Rodriguez Ochoa
Isaura Rojas
Thelma Uranga
Rebecca Veletanga

About  El Stitch Y Bitch

In 2008 Thelma Uranga and Stephanie Manriquez founded El Stitch y Bitch, a community of 20-30 year old crafters (knit, crochet & craft in all forms) located in the Pilsen, Bridgeport and Little Village neighborhoods of Chicago. The group can often be found piled in a members’ living room, at local cafes, around kitchen tables, in community-based arts organizations and at public festivals or happenings.

Day of the Dead at the National Museum of Mexican Art  is the largest annual Day of the Dead exhibit in the nation.
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