Felt Art

An Artist is Building a Bodega Where All the Products Are Made of Felt

Lucy Sparrow crafts a fully-functioning felt mini mart in New York City.
May 28, 2017, 11:35am
All images courtesy the artist

During the hot summer months in New York City, all you really want is a cold drink and maybe a pack of gummy candy from the corner bodega. And while you're there, you might as well pick up some hand soap and a package of sponges.

This summer, the commonplace grocery items New Yorkers pick up from their corner bodega get heightened thanks to a textile show by UK artist Lucy Sparrow, who's installing a fully-stocked felt convenience store on Little West 12th Street in New York City. Opening Saturday, June 5th and running for 4 weeks in partnership with The Standard, High Line, the exhibition will feature shelves stocked with all the product's you'd find in a Manhattan bodega, from frozen pizza to Band Aids.

Sparrow, who is known for re-making sex toys, from a real British sex shop, into felt pieces, will bring her downy-soft medium and aesthetic to a store filled with some of the most sought-after bodega items, a.k.a. delicious junky snack food. Ranging from candies like Swedish Fish and Reese's to Campbell's condensed soup, Sparrow and The Standard encourage all visitors to indulge and check out the artist's "felt world full of [the public's] favorite treats and hangover cures."

In total, the bodega took six months to create and install. As an extra treat, a replica of a classic New York City hot dog stand will accompany the bodega at its entrance. "Customers" can help themselves to felt sausage and serve themselves squeezable condiments of glitter-glue ketchup and mustard.

"The bodega as a subject came to me while I was working on Cornershop, and so is something I've been planning in my mind for three years," Sparrow tells Creators.

"I have had a lot of love from American supporters for every one of my projects and have always felt a strong pull to take the felt stateside," the artist shares. "Every British teenager of my generation was influenced by American culture, be it music, film, TV, or consumer goods, and I definitely saw the US as a mythical place that was rendered in technicolor compared to the UK."

Lucy Sparrow's felt bodega will be on display starting June 5, 2017. Follow Lucy Sparrow on her Instagram and learn more about her on her website.

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