Colorful Bird Suits by Laurel Roth Hope

 The other day, I found out about an artist that uses crochet in her work.   I've seen several crochet artists' work, and even met one amazing woman who is specifically known for her crocheted, large-scale portraits.  Now, I have found a new artist to add to my list of inspiring crocheters.  Her name is Laurel Roth Hope.  And here is her crocheted bird suits!

 Laurel Roth Hope,  Biodiversity Reclamation Suits for Urban Pigeons: Dodo II,  2014, crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 11 ¼” H 11 ½” D (beak to tail) 7” W (across chest), Base: 5 ¼ in diameter. 

Laurel Roth Hope, Biodiversity Reclamation Suits for Urban Pigeons: Dodo II, 2014, crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 11 ¼” H 11 ½” D (beak to tail) 7” W (across chest), Base: 5 ¼ in diameter. 

The series I found that introduced me to her work is called Biodiversity Reclamation Suits for Urban Pigeons. On her website, she presents a brief artist statement on the series:

"Inspired by the traditional use of fiber-craft to provide safety and comfort, I have been crocheting small suits for urban pigeons that disguise them as extinct birds, thereby (visually) re-creating biodiversity and placing a soothing 'cozy' on environmental fears."

 What a great concept!  To me, the suits are tackling multiple levels of discomfort that we have for the reality of extinction, yet still capture a humorous element that certainly sparked my attention.  Yes, the major themes are "comfort" and "safety," wanting to feel warm and free of fear.  But if you were to take the idea literally of putting suits on the over abundance we have of pigeons throughout the major cities of the world, the attempt to pass them off as birds claimed by extinction to fool us into a false sense of security is (to put it bluntly) a little absurd.  But that's exactly why I love this series! Whether this is the artist's intention or not, to me it is almost satirical — saying that if we were to just put costumes on some birds we have too much of anyways, then we will start to feel better about one of the concerns we have for our environment.  We would be allowed to be blinded to extinction.  And although crocheted bird suits would never really fool us, it would be quite a fun sight to see.

On top of that, the quality of the craftsmanship is impressive.  Crocheting is a traditional fiber craft, and many of the bird suits Laurel Roth Hope crocheted honors the craft by using stitch designs specific to the medium.  The quality and homage to traditional crochet work is evident in many of the works, especially the most recent ones.  

 Laurel Roth Hope,  Carolina Parakeet,  2009, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 13 inches.

Laurel Roth Hope, Carolina Parakeet, 2009, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 13 inches.

 Laurel Roth Hope,  Carolina Parakeet  (detail) ,   2009, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 13 inches.

Laurel Roth Hope, Carolina Parakeet (detail)2009, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 13 inches.

 Laurel Roth Hope,   Passenger Pigeon II,  2014, crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 11” H x 10 ½” D (beak to tail) x 4” W,  Base: 5 in diameter.

Laurel Roth Hope,  Passenger Pigeon II, 2014, crocheted yarn, handmade pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 11” H x 10 ½” D (beak to tail) x 4” W,  Base: 5 in diameter.

 Laurel Roth Hope,  Paradise Parrot , 2012, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 14 inches.

Laurel Roth Hope, Paradise Parrot, 2012, crocheted yarn, hand carved pigeon mannequin, walnut stand, 8 x 9 x 14 inches.

More of this series – as well as Laurel Roth Hope's other works, which are really worth checking out – can be found on her website:  www.loloro.com, and on her Facebook page:  Laurel Roth Hope.  

All of the images in this post are from her artist website, and clicking on them will direct you to the source page.  I hope that you take the time to look at all of her works throughout her website, as well as mine.  Feel free to visit my galleries listed in the menu at the top of my site.  If you'd like to sign up for my newsletter, do so on my homepage. Thank you so much, and I look forward to reading your comments!