Ok so ‘wisdom’ strip completed (see previous post); what to put along the edge? I had vaguely imagined a sort of chequerboard effect with the colours I’d already featured, but I found out the symbolic dimension of this piece hadn’t finished with me yet. The notion of Wisdom being linked with the colour orange is drawn from the Buddhist figure of Manjushri, the orange deity of wisdom, and one of my favourites. His seed syllable (or magic spell) is DHI especially in its swirly Sanskrit letter form, so I thought about using this in a strip down the side. After some struggling to turn it into graph paper squares, and coming up with meaningless chequerboard patterns, I abandoned this in favour of spelling it out in English in littler capitals; at least this has the potential to mean something to a potential investigator. I thought I’d keep the ‘tsegdrag’ – dot-dash-dot pattern – from its right-hand side… but in the event this somehow came out sideways! Still it imparts a mystical symbolic quality to the piece so far:
Then I had to work out what to put on the extensions either side, as this is only half the length of the ‘wisdom’ strip as it is. After leaving it for some while for an idea to pop into my head (trying to graph his traditional sword and book proving hopeless), I went for the understated approach of seven little white dots, to represent Manjushri’s seven-syllable mantra, and spaced them equidistantly on either side:
I have added an extra orange row to the bottom of the ‘wisdom’, so that I could crochet along both of the strips together, provided a right-angled join which hopefully should fit round the handrail. Now I just have to work out some kind of scalloped edging.
This is a good mix of the planned and the improvisatory – making it up one stage at a time. I hope you are feeling edified by all this spiritual high-mindedness I certainly was to find out that this piece will be taking its place alongside a knitted rugby pitch, a depiction of the sound of music, some random stripes, and a 3D squid! http://knittygraffity.blogspot.com/