Throughout history rye grain has played an important role in the Scandinavian food supply. Grain was ground to flour, from which the famous rye bread evolved. The remaining straw was turned into utilitarion objects and festive decoration. Apart from its highly aesthetic qualities, the straw has proved to be a strong, water repellant and heat insulating fiber.
Rye straw as a base fiber for contemporary surface design
‘‘During a month long artist-in-residency at Not Quite (Fengersfors, Sweden) I researched the possibilities of creating a flexible surface using rye straw as a raw material. I learned about the rich history of Swedish traditional craftsmanship and experimented with various techniques. All seperate elements of the plant have their own characteristics and require a specific approach. I developed a way of extracting dye from the stems, used starch from the grains to glue fibers together and created cocoon shaped sculptures with the softer upper parts of the stalk.’’
What started out as an exploratory research, transformed into a refined installation of delicate palm-sized sculptures. A landscape of carefully piled up material samples shows a personal interpretation of the local culture and environment. The palette of light pastels, accompanied by a broad variety of golden yellows and occasional reddish hues form a subtly vibrant composition of color.