In 2010 I met Cristina Pacciani through Peace Felt – a global art exchange project. We are what you might call, “virtual friends”,
having never actually met in person. Shown above is a work Cristina was crafting to send off to someone she had also never met in person; a gift she would give freely in the spirit of love, connectivity and Peace. Cristina would receive a felted art gift also,
but from a different person…who happened to be me, Marie Spaulding. Through this exchange it was my good fortune to meet
such a bright energy and kind, loving heart.
Cristina is a lovely soul and gifted artist who is also a talented felt maker. She is an Italian, living in Amsterdam where she felts her art under the name Cricri Felt, she also teaches felt making and she has a beautiful family. In 2011 Cristina conceived of the idea for
The Arlecchino Project, also a Global Art Project, but in this case, calling on her “virtual” friends to send her a fabric or threads so she could connect everyone by creating with them a large, tangible work of art.
What came about was and is bold, beautiful and sincerely heart felt. The work has traveled greatly, and touched the hearts of so many. Now, some three years later, the boxes still arrive filled with fabric, fibers, love and stories; new people continue to join the project, and Cristina continues to felt the love of it all into works of art.
We will let Cristina tell you about the project in her own words.
FORTUNE SMILES ON US by Cristina Pacciani
Three years ago, I launched The Arlecchino Project, a global art project aiming to connect all the pending threads from all over the world and to link people, creating a large work of art, translating the virtual world of social media into a real and tangible piece, possibly colorful, surely FELT.
The response from the world has been , so far, overwhelming. The project counts more than 200 active participants , who took the trouble of selecting materials, put them in a box or envelop , go to the post office and mail them to me. Many added their stories about the special piece of fabric or the long kept fibers …..each one of them included their love and support. I FELT.it all.
I was left totally overwhelmed with joy and tried to express it in the work “Excess of joy ” , later donated to charity.
Since then, I have personally met many many friends from all over the world, sometimes working together, sometimes exchanging techniques, sometimes over dinner, always with pleasure .Connecting, for real. Hearts were touched, love was shared, the passion for textile and color was the linking thread. Textures were added. The plot thickened, so many stories in each piece . Lots of rolling , lots of beautiful dawns and sunsets , felt, felt and more felt.
The Arlecchino Project has been exhibited in Amsterdam, The Netherlands , in 2012 , then travelled around Europe. In 2013 it counted 15 colorful felt panels, each 10 meters long or more, and on the international women’s day March 8th it was exhibited in Florence, Italy, in a magnificent national monument, La Biblioteca del Palagio di parte guelfa. I was proud and felt every fiber of this magic happening.
After that , I must admit I thought nothing else could top the success of this project.
Total fulfillment can be deceiving, but was needed along with some rest.
Also, my personal career has shifted , making hard to combine it all. Having an agent is going to hopefully bring a little more space. It is with renewed energy and great enthusiasm that I now say: let’s keep dreaming and make the dream come true.
I was reorganizing the storage and could not help but looking at the pieces of the Arlecchino . I still cant believe it’s true. Each one of them is so powerful . When I look at them, I can almost feel each one of you , dear friends, and I remember each contribution, each jump of the heart…..everyday like Xmas and my birthday at the same time, the endless joy, surprise, magic….each piece of The Arlecchino Project reminds me of the magic of dreams. I think it is important to keep dreaming . So once more, please spread the world, share the story, be part of this big dream and join us.
Together we can make a difference, we can color the world, little by little, one panel at the time. Next stop….well, the sky is the limit but I do have a big wish for the next exhibit. More details soon, in the meantime…
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”
DREAM BIG! ~ Cristina Pacciani