Kirk has been knitting since 1988. He began designing in 1996, and shares his appreciation for colour and complex design with world-renowned textile designers Kaffe Fassett and Brandon Mably, with whom he apprenticed in 1998 at the Kaffe Fassett Studio in London, England.
Kirk and has been featured in Enroute Magazine, Family Circle Knitting, Vogue Knitting, The National Post newspaper, Maclean’s Magazine, The Presbyterian Record, Vogue’s Knit.1 magazine, the online knitting magazine Knitnet, and The Grid. He has been interviewed on CBC Radio's “This Morning” about knitting and acting. A documentary about his biggest project, Stitched Glass, called “The Threads of Abraham” has been made by filmmaker Todd Witham.
Kirk has been a guest speaker for several knitting guilds, and has given “Knitting without Fear” workshops at the Textile Museum of Canada. He is also often asked to speak about “Stitched Glass” for church and interfaith groups.
To book a talk or workshop, please contact us.
In 2003, Kirk was awarded a significant Chalmers Foundation Fellowship through the Ontario Arts Council in support of “Stitched Glass,” an installation of 5’ x 8’ tapestry panels, knit in the style of stained glass. The work explores the commonalities and conflicts of the three Abrahamic faiths: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
Kirk could not have foreseen the scope of the work. After over 13 years of research, design and knitting, he has completed the first and second tapestries – the Christian and Judaic windows - and is currently completing the Islamic tapestry. Kirk’s background as a PK – a preacher’s kid - inspired his interest in religion and spirituality. With “Stitched Glass,” he has found a way to combine both his faith and textile interests.
Kirk also gives talks about the project. To book a talk about Stitched Glass, please contact us.
The Pussy Hat Project is a fantastic idea that LA-based screenwriter Krista Suh, and her architect friend Jayna Zweiman, came up with to protest the comments made by Donald Trump about grabbing women’s genitalia in an unsolicited manner. Suh had decided to go to the Jan 21, 2017 protest March on Washington and knew it would be cold, so she wanted to knit herself a hat. She and Zweiman realized that if more women wore the same hat, and they could design a hat that symbolized their objection to Trump’s comments, it could be both a fashion and political statement. Kat Coyle, the owner of The Little Knittery, the knitting store where this conversation took place, was fast to supply a pattern that would be easy enough for beginner knitters, and could be customized by more experienced knitters. The pattern is available on the Pussyhat Project website and here’s a how-to video. I loved this idea, but was really moved to action when I heard that my friend Tracey Erin Smith, Artistic Director of Soulo Theatre, was herself going to the Jan 21 march. She co-created the Soulo Theatre March on Washington project with Savoy Howe, founder of the Toronto Newsgirls Boxing Club. Together, they will be leading the bus in creative exercises on the way down to Washington, they’ll participate in the march, and will talk about their experience on the way home. They’ll be creating a collective show about the entire trip to be presented at the Soulo Theatre Festival in 2017.
I knitted a bunch of pussy hats for both Tracey and Savoy, as well as friends participating in the Toronto edition of the March on Washington, customized them all, and enjoyed my protest knitting thoroughly.