Jim Drain Knits a Colorful Future for Opening Ceremony

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Published January 22, 2010

PHOTO BY DARIA RADLINSKI

 

Artist Jim Drain is no stranger to knits and textiles; his sculpture involes installations of psychedelic web works, and he’s designed outfits for Errase Erratta, The Gossip, and his former roommate, Elyse Allen of Le Tigre. Commissioned by Opening Ceremony (in conjunction with his New York gallery, Greene Naftali) in the middle of winter, Drain has rescued us from our tired black knits with three designs, each produced in a limited edition of ten.

Those designs see Drain comparing the craft involved with knits to retro techonology: “Knitting and weaving share a lot of similarities to computer codes and pixels. [They] can be seen as the first computers in a way, by storing information in fabric.” Drain teamed up with the RISD Textile Department (he graduated from the school with a degree in fine art) to implement his pixilated visions, which are straight off an old Atari or Nintendo—heavily patterned with squares, hearts, or fading dots in the brightest of electronically-enhanced colors. One more abstract design, which looks like TV static, is in fact an interpretation of the brain. The most exciting machine, Drain seems to think, is inside us.

JIM DRAIN’S SWEATERS ARE CURRENTLY INSTALLED IN OPENING CEREMONY’S WINDOWS, AT 35 HOWARD STREET, NEW YORK.