Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Seqe System Shawl

On the first day of the vacation portion of our trip, we went to several museums in Cusco, then had a quick tour of the principal ruins in the area (we went back the next day on our run to see them in more detail).

One of the museums, originally an Inca temple which was converted into a monastary when the Spanish arrived, had a small gallery with modern Peruvian art, including this representation of the seqe system in the region. I can't find a good explanation of seqes online, and I'm not sure I understood entirely what the guide told us about them, but evidently they're lines of energy that connect sacred places to each other (with the most sacred place at the center, where all the lines in the picture originate).

Seqe System of Cusco

Seqe System of Cusco

(Sorry about the pictures--the room was very narrow!)

I think this painting wants to be a shawl--begun where the lines start and worked in the round (all in one color, with beads or eyelets to form the lines), till the diameter of the circle is the width of the shawl. Then there will be some kind of crazy binding off/casting on thing to turn the circle into a rectangle... I'm not quite sure how that will work, but there are a couple of sweaters (the sunrise circle jacket, and starburst sweater, both from IK, and I'm sure there are more I'm forgetting) where a similar thing happens. Or are there shawls that do this already?

What's interesting about the sweaters, as compared to the painting and my shawl idea, is that circular construction of rectangles forms the central design element of the sweaters, whereas the radiating lines are the dominant feature of the painting (and actually, there's nothing inherently circular about the painting--it's a by-product of how I thought it could be knit). It seems more organic that the alternative (just knitting a rectangle, positioning the beads or eyelets to form lines), but maybe it would add too much circular-ness (circularity?) that wasn't in the painting?


Sunflowerfairy said...

I can totally see this as a shawl.


jennsquared said...

I don't think there is anything like that out there. I mean the pinwheel is pretty close, but it's not rectangle. I wonder if you can did it as round and when it hit the width, bind off those stitches and continue on the length and until it hit those area, and then work on the 4 corners... I'll do a sketch on Wed night to show you what I'm saying...