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Danish Modern: Suzanne Swannie Textil

Date Jul 22, 2009 - Oct 11, 2009
Artist Suzanne Swannie
Curated by Ingrid Jenkner

Exhibition Overview

Suzanne Swannie is a Halifax-based designer and weaver who creates functional textiles, tapestries and large architectural installations for private and public environments. She also weaves pictorial tapestries and is known for unique fabric constructions such as the gallery installation Repassage. Both the woven works and the constructions display the “Danish Modern” principle of repetition of modular units as a means of generating surfaces and structures with a typical emphasis on rich colour harmonies.

Additional Information

Swannie’s integrated sensibility—the legacy of her Scandinavian training—allows her to move adroitly between industry, craft and the art world, gaining from each, apologizing to none. The retrospective selection includes tapestry works from the 1970s; pieced and appliqueed wall textiles created in collaboration with the Mi’kmaq women of Eskasoni Reserve (1977-1980); production household textiles (1980s); the creased-silk installation Repassage (1986); subsequent tapestry carpets and their paper studies (1990s, 2000s); and a major figurative tapestry triptych completed in 2007.

The exhibition is organized by the Mt. St. Vincent University Art Gallery. The accompanying catalogue contains essays by Sheila Stevenson, Halifax, Rachel Gotlieb, Toronto and Ron Shuebrook, Guelph.

Related Programs and Events

Lecture: Suzanne Swannie and Danish Modernism in Canada with Rachel Gotlieb
Wednesday September 16, 6:30 pm
Rachel Gotlieb will discuss the work of Suzanne Swannie in relation to Canada's reception of Danish Modernism beginning in the 1950s. Gotlieb is a leading expert on Canadian design and has published several books and articles on the topic.
Free for TMC Members and Full-time students,
Non-members $12.
Advance tickets may be purchased in person at the TMC's front desk. Please arrive early, seating is limited.

<i>Triptych for Micah</i> (2006 - 2007) Tapestry-woven triptych in wool, silk, linen and cotton on linen warp 90 x 300 cm. Collection of Maja Swannie Jacob and Greg Jacob
<i>Pictures for Children - Beasts</i> (2003) Cotton, silk, linen, metal, tapestry (7 panels) Each panel 13.5 x 13.5 x 3 cm. Collection of John Brent
<i>Pictures for Children - Beasts</i> (2003) Cotton, silk, linen, metal, tapestry (7 panels) Each panel 13.5 x 13.5 x 3 cm. Collection of John Brent
<i>Brud I (red carpet)</i> (2004) Carpet woven in reduced tapestry technique. Hand-dyed Spelzau wool on linen warp 174 x 119 cm. Collection of Milo Stening Riding
<i>Repassage</i> (1985)  Recreated with assistance from Jennifer Greene, 2008. Silk organza, chalk, wax, pins, thread (installation) 180 x 900 x 1-4 cm. Courtesy of the artist
<i>Cosmic Woman</i> (1980-1981) Linen, cotton, silk, gold tapestry 52 x 24 x 1 cm. Courtesy of the artist