Hannah Ryggen (b. 1894, Malmö, Sweden – d. 1970, Trondheim, Norway) was one of Scandinavia’s most outstanding artistic figures of the 20th century. In the first major presentation of the artist’s work in the UK, this exhibition surveys her career from an early painted portrait created in 1914, to the intricate tapestries that characterised her extraordinary career from the 1920s onward.
Ryggen’s work demonstrated her impassioned responses to the socio-political events of her time. She dealt with a range of issues from the rise of fascism (Ethiopia, 1935) and the Nazi occupation of Norway, including its impact on her own family (6 October 1942, 1943); to the post-war growth of nuclear power (Mr Atom, 1952) and media coverage of the Vietnam War (Blood in the Grass, 1966).
The artist’s intense relationship to the world around her forms the heart of this exhibition, which celebrates both her vibrant tapestries and the processes involved in creating them.