"Hannah Ryggen. WOVEN MANIFESTOS" 26 September 2019 to 12 January 2020 at the SCHIRN

 

With her monu­mental tapes­tries the artist Hannah Ryggen (1894–1970) created a powerful, polit­ical inspired oeuvre, working from a small self-suffi­cient farm on the west coast of Norway. She launched spec­tac­ular visual attacks on Hitler, Franco, and Mussolini and made powerful state­ments of support to the victims of Fascism and National Socialism. On the occa­sion of Norway’s turn as Guest of Honor at the Frank­furt Book Fair in 2019, the Schirn Kunsthalle Frank­furt is dedi­cating the Swedish-Norwe­gian artist a major mono­graphic exhi­bi­tion that will provide the first in-depth insight into her oeuvre to the German public. Many of her large-scale polit­ical works comment on the events and polit­ical debates in the 1930s and ’40s, with the artist’s socialist beliefs shining through.

Hannah Ryggen, 6. Oktober 1942, 1943, Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustrimuseum, Trondheim © H. Ryggen, VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019, Foto: Ute Freia Beer

The exhi­bi­tion aims to explore how Ryggen repre­sents a different kind of modernism; a modernism where elements from folk art and mythology are mixed with issues from contem­po­rary life. She explored an entirely new range of motifs while using a tradi­tional medium for an unprece­dented purpose: making portable murals that commu­ni­cated her potent polit­ical messages to the public. Hannah Ryggen’s works resonate in our time of increasing inequality, nation­alism, and strongmen, and are an uncanny reminder of the need to fight for the prin­ci­ples of humanism.

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