Sofia Hagström Møller recreates old weavings!
As a part of the “What’s on your Loom” series, we feature the works and the story (so far) of Denmark-based artist Sofia Hagström Møller. Sofia loves to focuses on and play with the Contrasts in Compositions. She believes that the contrasts are necessary for human beings to orient themselves and therefore find their way in life. In the write-up below, Sofia shares her journey as an artist and her recent woven works created during an artist residency at the WeavingLab in the University of Wisconsin-Madison,USA.
Weaving threads through time and space: I had been invited to an artist residency at the WeavingLab in teh University of Madison-Wisconsin, which is run by Professor Marianne Fairbanks. I have used their TC2 Loom and the PointCarre software to transfer my watercolor drawings into weaving files and then transform them into actual woven pieces. After getting to know each other through Instagram, I met Marianne Fairbanks in the summer of 2017 in Copenhagen. She and I have since then collaborated together in Denmark, where during the summer of 2019, she brought her WeavingLab to an exhibition at Copenhagen Contemporary. After this two-week event, I was invited for an artist residency at the University of Wisconsin-Madison during January 2020.
While planning my trip to Chicago and Madison, I spent some time researching the region, and this has sparked an interest in me, with regards to the immigrants that traveled across the Atlantic, from Sweden to America, over 100 years ago. For me, textiles and weaving as a handcraft has always been part of my childhood, all the women around me could weave and were crafts-people. My grandmother was born in 1898 in Flisby, Småland during the time when people were moving to a better life in America. Some of them brought textiles along, and most of these women knew how to weave. I have inherited a large stack of handmade textiles from my grandmother, (Astrid Sofia Stenqvist / Äng). I am still using them to this day and I adore them. They are superbly made, by hand. I have brought one of my grandmother’s textiles along to the USA for this project, as an inspiration and as a physical link to the past. To a time where crafts were necessary for the family to get textiles for use in daily life.
From the past to the future: The method of production itself is modern, the woven pieces have been produced on the TC2 loom, which has many technical possibilities. The finished pieces have been combined together: to remind the audience of the past and of our history, but also to give inspiration towards the future. Perhaps even broaden the audience’s understanding of the power of handcrafts and art in combination with new technology.
Sketches were made by hand and in PointCarré for the TC2 loom: I have made my sketches, and my watercolor drawings related to my grandmother’s handwoven table cloth. She used a very common Scandinavian weaving pattern called Daldräll. I have painted flowers as one image, but also the weaving pattern itself, as another image.
In my weaving on the TC2 loom, I wanted to combine these two, and also to play with the dimensions and scale of the pattern. On this loom, where the threads are flexibly intertwined, I have magnified the weaving pattern itself and used it as a visual part of the bigger piece. The micro scale of the weaving pattern itself is thereby directly related to the macro scale, and the visual aesthetics of the piece. The possibilities on the TC2 loom is that you don’t need to make a strict pattern with shafts that have to follow each other, every single thread is lifted individually. This was important for me to take advantage of, when I made my image for my woven pieces. Taking full advantage of the fact that the TC2 loom can actually weave the shades and the nuances that are in the aquarelle medium.
Finished pieces will be shown in Madison, Wisconsin USA during summer 2020. Together with Marianne Fairbanks I will continue the collaboration of exploring what we have in common, the great knowledge and interest in textile arts and weaving. This project was made possible with financial support from the Danish Art Foundation and the National Bank of Denmark.
Exploring the unreasonable and unnatural is the driving force behind Sofia’s experiments. Through diligence and discipline, she breaks down the incongruous and turn it into the understandable, then she uses this new knowledge, to further develop what she finds most interesting: namely woven constructions. In her studio, Sofia work with the hand-woven, as well as computer-controlled textiles. Most of her work is with woven art objects, akin to sculptures. It is material compositions which appeals to her. When she’s not in her studio, she teaches weaving and textile design. She conducts regular classes and also classes for adults with disabilities. This gives me her an intimate understanding of the desire of humans to shape and create things with their hands. As such, she has a clarity for our use of handcrafts and she therefore considers herself a contemporary craftsman.
Sofia has worked with unique projects such as decorations for public spaces in the Orkanen Library in Malmö, Sweden 2008. As well as church textiles which marks the centennial celebrations of the Swedish Church in Copenhagen 2011. She has also worked as a freelance designer and design assistant in the textile industry. She has been invited and participated in a number of exhibitions both in Denmark, but also internationally in Sweden, Italy, Bratislava and France. She is a weaving consultant at Kunstkollektivet 8B in Denmark aswell as a board member of Nordic Textile Art. She is currently working on a collaborative project with Marianne Fairbanks, USA to create an exhibition in Madison, Wisconsin for summer 2020. She is educated from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Design in 2007 with additional studies at NID National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad, India.
May 6, 2021
April 27, 2021
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