Client: KunstRai Amsterdam
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Completion date: 2014
For years, Barbara Broekman has been collecting newspaper clippings showing the most tragic events. The subject matter is extremely dramatic, yet the pictures are hauntingly beautiful. For the Faith series, Broekman edited these pictures and had them 'translated' into weavings by the Textile Museum in Tilburg. The use of textiles softens the harsh and confronting images.
Suffering, chaos, beauty and solace are the key subjects that most people recognize in pictures showing the consequences of war and natural disasters.
In the eyes of Broekman though, colour, composition and rhythm work together to create these enchanting images. The series ‘Faith’ is an exploration of these contrasts. By enlarging the photos the literal image disappears. From close by all you can see is woven patterns; from far away the image is reminiscent of an impressionist painting.
After thirty years of working with textiles, Barbara thoroughly masters the weaving technique. The computer controlled looms of the Textile Museum work with eight different colours. With the hand of a master Broekman mixes these colours into a full colour experience. For each picture, Broekman chose different weaving techniques. From far away the complete image is visible, from close by the viewer can experience how the structure of the stitches give a new dept to the subject. In the work ‘Irak’, the dynamic twillweave strengthens the image of tables and chairs blown away by bombs.