I collect unfinished needlepoint projects from online auction sites, thrift stores, and rummage sales, and finish them – but using only white yarn. My intervention takes these projects to their intended conclusion structurally, but not visually. The original anonymous maker’s accomplishment (or lack thereof) is thus preserved; the labor they invested is reclaimed. I want to remind the viewer that the work of our lives will never be done, but it will end.
In addition to finishing unfinished needlepoint myself, I have formed The Society for the Prevention of Unfinished Needlepoint (SPUN). SPUN is a textile welfare organization dedicated to eliminating the worldwide phenomenon of unfinished needlepoint. Through the SPUN website, members can give away their unfinished needlepoint or pick up an unfinished project to complete. Stories about the origin and history of specific unfinished needlepoint projects can be shared. Images of completed works can be posted. Through our combined efforts, SPUN can eventually eliminate something else – itself. When the last piece of unfinished needlepoint is finally completed, SPUN itself will rest in peace.