Every now and then, an artwork is so poignant, so sublime and unique, that its creator can’t help but become enveloped in it.
Artist Bea Camacho, 31, is one of those artists. On Thursday and Saturday, she will be as snug as a bug in a metaphorical rug at her Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston debut, in which she will spend up to 11 hours crocheting herself into a yarn cocoon.
The Philippines-born artist began making the cocoons during her senior year at Harvard University in 2005, where she majored in visual and environmental studies, with a focus in studio arts.
The in-gallery performance piece is a response to the ICA’s exhibition “Fiber Sculpture: 1960-Present.”
Camacho said her cocoons were inspired by her many travels as a child, when she bounced between the Philippines, London and the United States, often yearning for her family and friends.
“Having lived in so many different countries, I always had to create a home for myself,” said Camacho, who now spends much of her time in Asia, mainly, Shanghai. “It’s the idea of creating your own environment. I use crochet because I really wanted it to be a very intimate material, and the act of crocheting is meditative and contemplative.”
After the piece is finished, Camacho sits inside the cocoon for a few minutes before wriggling out through a small hole, destroying the piece.
ICA Director of Education Monica Garza said Bea’s work was chosen because she creates “new and beautiful forms using a familiar vocabulary—yarn and crochet.”
“Her performance at the ICA will be a response to the art and architecture of the ICA,” said Garza. “In doing so, Bea’s work will provide visitors with a different way of thinking about their surroundings.”