From Exhibits at Vesterheim to Norway House

If you want to see weavings made in the Norwegian tradition, the Midwest has been perennially good location.  The upcoming exhibit at Norway House, “Traditional Norwegian Weaving: American Reboot,” is the latest, and the largest in Minneapolis.

Each summer the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum holds a rich exhibit of many types of folk art, including weaving, rosemaling, knife-making, and wood carving.  The objects in the National Exhibit of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition complement each other in a joint display.  This exhibit is an opportunity to see many types of folk art done in a traditional style along with pieces created in more contemporary styles, but with clear Norwegian folk art influences. The current exhibit is up through July 29, 2017.

Two pieces in the American Reboot exhibit at Norway House from previous exhibits illustrate a traditional versus contemporary influence. Vestfold is a weaving technique named after the county in Norway in which several examples were found.  The technique features embroidery-like patterns woven into a two-shaft ground weave, similar to Swedish krabbasnår.  The coverlets were built up of bands of characteristic patterns that varied in color and pattern.  Robbie LaFleur’s banded piece would fit in well with the 18th and 19th century Vestfold weaving found in that area; it uses many of the motifs found in the older coverlets.

robbie+vestfold

In contrast, Rosemary Roehl used the same technique for a more recognizable image–birds march along bands of color divided by borders of flowers. Rosemary liked the pattern so much that she wove it both with a black background and another with a white background.

birds

 

rosemary-bunad

Rosemary Roehl

In her photo, Rosemary is wearing a bunad from the Nordfjord region, which she sewed herself.  Her comment on this was, “Lucky for me they were weavers.” She wove the apron, which has flowers done with the vest fold technique, and the many yards of bands on the hem, waist and front and back of the bodice.

Since The Norwegian Textile Letter became digital, photos of all of the weavings in the Vesterheim National Exhibit of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition have been published each summer.

2016

 

Krokbragd and More at the Summer Exhibit

2015

National Exhibition of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition – 2015

2014

33rd National Exhibition of Folk Art in the Norwegian TraditionVesterheim Exhibition Gallery.

2013

National Exhibition of Folk Art in the Norwegian Tradition, 2013

 

 

 

About Robbie LaFleur
Weaving in Minnesota, when I can!

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