Thursday, November 29, 2012

Bodil Wallman

One of the ways I've found some of my very favorite pieces is through ebay's RSS function.  You type your search in, press enter, and then scroll to the bottom of the page looking for the RSS button; you click the button and put into google reader.  Presto!  Now, every new item posted that matches that particular key word will come directly to your google reader.

This particular wall hanging came up through the ever-popular "Swedish linen" term (ok, popular to me, the 26-going-on-86 year old).  I love the colors and the kitsch, and when it finally arrived in Boston, I decided to investigate the artist.  Why not, hey?


The piece was signed BoWa, short for Bodil Wallman.  She was a Swedish textile designer in the 1950s and 1960s for Almedahl's Design.  Started in 1856, the company is still around today!  One of their most recognizable designs, at least for me, is their herring pattern:

You can't buy their products directly through their website, but you can see some of their other designs at Huset.

(I also found her granddaughter's portfolio through this search; strange!)

Astrid Sampe, one of her contemporaries, has many pieces in the Art Institute of Chicago, and while these were a bit less busy than Bodil's, I think Bodil's pieces are great examples of a mid-century modern take on traditional folk art. 

That's all I've got, though.  I think I'd need to track down a Swedish textile historian to find any more information, and given that I'm not even sure that sort of person exists...?  I did some rudimentary searches in Swedish, and I couldn't find a book or any more information.  I guess I'll just have to admire and enjoy my newly-adorned wall.


muffin said...

Awesome! I didn't know you could add ebay searches to your google reader.

muffin said...

And I love the vibrant colors of the wall hanging!

Bridget said...

Between RSS feeds for ebay and Craigslist, I'm happy!

And actually, I knew that you could do an RSS feed for specific Etsy shops, but not searches...but this guy made a bookmarklet that you can add to your browsing bar and click on once you've searched in Etsy for the term you'd like to RSS. Easy!

Yes, I do love the's the perfect mix of colors for my place! :)

Jillian's Bella Rosa Antiques said...

I just learned about this artist when I listed a BOWA linen wall hanging today on Etsy....! I think the same Bridget above just told me who the artist was, I had no clue! But, I do have a cousin in Sweden and I can send him a message to see if he knows anything else. :)

Bridget said...

Yup, this is me! :) Her work is so happy and fun, I love it!