The controversial 60 ft bronze sculpture, Verity by Damien Hirst has stood at the harbour mouth of Ilfracombe in North Devon, England since 2012. But unusually, at dawn this April Fools Day 1 April 2014, she was revealed to be sporting a giant pair of striped legwarmers.
The knitted garments mysteriously appeared overnight and although rumours abound amongst locals as to who is responsible, no one has yet owned up to the prank. Some believe Hirst himself to be behind it, while others think that the mariners aboard a warship that was docked nearby at the time must be involved. The woollen garments remained in place for 24 hours, being removed by the harbour master the next day, but the council and locals alike took the event in good humour and shops in the town reported that business had picked up.
Tonia Sears, owner of The Periwinkle knitting shop and cafe which opened in Ilfracombe November 2013 denies any affiliation, but comments that she finds it ‘brilliant that people are exploring artwork with yarn and the community are getting involved’. Her venue hosts craft workshops and clubs and she has been spreading the yarn art knowledge, recently teaching 45 members of the ‘Combe Crumpets’ (Ilfracombe’s Womens Institute group), the art of Tunisian Crochet.
The covert yarnbombing craze continues to spread, with comical positivity in its wake.