Press release, January 2020
The enormous textile installation goes meandering through the building, spanning all the different floors of the museum. It was displayed for the first time in 2016, running until September 2017, in connection with the exhibition Textures of Life. AROS subsequently acquired the Valkyrie for its permanent collection through donations from the Augustinus Fonden and the New Carlsberg Foundation.
The Valkyrie of the North
The figure of the Valkyrie has existed for hundreds of years in the visual arts, music and literature. In Norse mythology the Valkyries were a group of women of great power, associated with war and death. These divine figures would fly over the battlefields and select the bravest and strongest warriors. Pointing out which warriors were to survive and which were to succumb in battle, they then decided the fate of the men.
With Valkyrie Rán Joana Vasconcelos has created ‘the Valkyrie of the North’, which is not only a representation of the idea of female beauty and strength. It is also the story of the collective process and the creation of the work in the artist’s studio which counts 50 full-time specialists (including architects, blacksmiths, and seamstresses). Old craft traditions that are in danger of falling into oblivion are taken up again and celebrated in Valkyrie Rán, which becomes emblematic of a slowness that contrasts sharply with the mechanical production processes of today.
About the work
- Vasconcelos’ Valkyrie series from 2004 onwards features monumental site-specific installations, all made by hand in the artist’s studio
- Valkyrie Rán has been designed and crafted specifically for the architecture at ARoS
- The piece is adjustable and can be shown in five different sizes. When fully extended it is 50 metres long and winds its way up and down all the levels of the museum.
- The materials used for Valkyrie Rán include fabrics, LED lights, embroidery and bead ornamentation
- The textiles for the work were donated by Kvadrat
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