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Philomela, 2014

pencil and ink on paper

150 x 250 cm

Seen/Scene, 2014

ink and embroidery on aida fabric

50 x 100 cm

40°51'46''N 25°34'40''E, 2014

ink on aida fabric

100 x 200 cm

Sea/See, 2014

embroidery on paper

15 x 30 cm

Seams/Seems, 2014

embroidery on paper

15 x 30 cm

Nightingale, 2014

embroidery on aida fabric

20 x 40 cm

Trappegalleriet, Viborg Kunsthal, 2014

In a stripped down mode of expression, through drawing and needlework, Philomela explores the dialectics of language and the suspension of subjectivity in time and space.

The pieces on show range from large scale drawings to small scale poetic minimalism. The title of the show Philomela is taken from an ancient greek myth where the female protagonist Philomela is captured, imprisoned and raped by her sisters husband and resorts to the visual communication of embroidery when her tongue is cut out and she looses her voice to speak. At the end of the myth she is transformed into a nightingale.

The narrative in the story is dramatic and violent but in Svensgaard's artworks the focus is placed upon the subtle elements of significance. In minimal and poetic form Svensgaard investigates embroidery as language and voice, place as a crime scene and bodily horizon, and the song of the insignificant nightingale as a sign, which resonates throughout history.

Photos: Mette Lucca Jensen