Skip to content

Material Matters

Exhibition at Norrköping Museum of Art 2002 and at Brandts Museum of Art in Odense 2003.

The exhibition Material Matters : The Substance of Textile Art was an initiative on the part of Inger Bergström, Anna -Lena Carlsson, Elizabet Christiansson, Tarika Lennerbjörk and Maria Wahlgren. Together with the Norrköping Museum of Art they have been involved in a discussion of the changing status of textile art in the second half of the 20th century. Textile art is often regarded as a handicraft with its own special set of reviewers and critics and its own audience. The result is a marginalization of textile art as compared to other forms of art, such as painting, sculpture, photography, installation and video. In part, this confusion has formed the basis of the exhibition Material Matters.

In such a context it is important that the discussion of this development is historically grounded and to view handicraft from a broader art historical perspective – where artists in all genres find new forms of expression, via textile and other materials. This development started in the 1950s and 1960s. The five initiators of the exhibition take their attitude to both material, technique and te representation of space from artists such as Eva Hesse, Claes Oldenburg, Louise Bourgeois, Mike Kelley, Jessica Stockholder and Rosemarie Trockel. Like these artists Inger Bergström, Anna-Lena Carlsson, Elizabet Christiansson, Tarika Lennerbjörk, Maria Wahlgren relate both to the textile tradition and the needlework, as well as to the hierarchies of the material, its origins, social and culture methods, gender perspective, etc.

Emese Benczúr, Inger Bergström, Louise Bourgeois, Anna-Lena Carlsson, Helen Chadwick, Elizabet Christiansson, Mike Kelley, Tarika Lennerbjörk, Edward Lipski, Max Mohr, Cathy de Monchaux, Claes Oldenburg, Urszula Plewka-Schmidt, Hans Hamid Rasmussen, Peter Rösel, Berend Strik + One Architecture, Rosemarie Trockel, Maria Wahlgren

The publication Material Matters – the substance of textile art contains of two essays: Material in Time and Space by art historian Johanna Rosenqvist and Textiles as webs of meaning by art historian Fred Andersson.

Indication (detail), Inger Bergström

Indication, Inger Bergström
Published inArchive