Several of my pieces are going on the road to Redwood Falls, Minnesota, in November, for an exhibit at the Redwood Falls Public Library. The opening is Friday, November 15, from 2:30-4:30, and the show will remain up through December 31. As the shortest days of the year approach, I hope these weavings are a bright spot for visitors.
eXperiments on X: An Xhibit of Weaving
Redwood Falls Public Library
509 South Lincoln
Redwood Falls, MN
M-TH 10:00 am – 8:00 pm; Fri 10:00 am – 5:00 pm; Sat 10:00 am – 2:00 pm; Closed Sunday
Contact: 507-616-7420, RedwoodFallsLibrary.org
The opening is Friday, November 15, from 2:30-4:30pm. At 3pm, I will present a lecture on Norwegian tapestry weaving, “From Virgins to Spaceships: A Visual Voyage Through Norwegian Tapestry.”
I am a handweaver of contemporary textiles inspired by Scandinavian folk textiles. The language of my looms is based on centuries-old techniques, learned in weaving school in Norway. The core graphic impact of old folk textiles drives each new weaving, in a search for balance, color and boldness. Even when the planning process is computer-assisted, or a technique is done at a new scale or in unusual materials, I honor the fine craftsmanship of the past.
Three years ago I started a series inspired by a set of 19th century coverlets from the area of Kristiansand, Norway, which include bands of geometric shapes woven in a lesser-known technique, danskbrogd. I was fascinated with the use of Xs, diamonds and zig-zag elements in a beautiful and graphic jumble of bands. The overall composition of individual pieces is never perfectly symmetrical, suggesting a constant play between the weaver and the work on the loom during its creation, a search for a beautiful whole. This mirrors my work process today.
Xs remained a constant through my exploration, but I also used the danskbrogd technique for images. My first, and smallest piece, “No Protection,” included two guns. Later, a woven moose took up more than half the surface.
In centuries past, the Xs and diamonds may have been recognized as religious or folk symbols; today, they are interesting abstract shapes. What symbols have power or meaning today? One piece in my series has a row of nuclear bombs—the ongoing hostility with North Korea dominated the news while I was weaving it.
A final piece on display is not in the same series with Xs or danskbrogd technique. It features a bright red wooly pile star.
No traditional craft remains vital unless it reflects the contemporary craftsperson. This body of work represents an homage to the 19th century, and a reflection of our own.
If you are in western Minnesota from November 18-December 31, 2019, stop by the library!