Archaeological find in North Brabant inspires new work by Claudy Jongstra, which can be seen from 9 April in the exhibition ‘To Dye For’

17 March 2022

‘To Dye For’ runs from 9 April to 13 November 2022 in the TextielMuseum in Tilburg

Frisian artist Claudy Jongstra is putting the finishing touches to her new tapestry ‘Shepherd’s Touch’ in the TextielLab. The four-metre-wide work, which is inspired by a recent archaeological find in North Brabant, will go on display in the TextielMuseum on 9 April. It is one of ten new works that, alongside objects from the museum collection, reveal the beauty and dilemmas of coloured textiles in the exhibition ‘To Dye For’.

Among the items found in an Iron Age grave in Uden-Slabroekse Heide (North Brabant) was a 2,800-year-old textile with a pied-de-poule pattern. Scientific research showed that the textile was once blue and red. The intricate checked pattern, the dyes used to produce it and the textile’s decay over time all come together in Jongstra’s new tapestry. She dyed the fabric with woad, indigo and madder, using historical dye recipes from the TextielMuseum’s collection. In doing so, she drew on the past to find circular solutions for creating and dyeing the textiles of today. The artist co-created the tapestry with the product developers in the TextielLab, the TextielMuseum’s professional workplace, weaving the fabric instead of felting it, as she normally does.
Jongstra’s felt works can be found in collections around the world, including the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

The other artists whose new work will be exhibited include Antonio José Guzman in collaboration with Iva Jankovic, Nan Groot Antink, Angelica Falkeling, Aboubakar Fofana, Aliki van der Kruijs and designer Nienke Hoogvliet. In addition, the exhibition will present recent work by makers such as Porfirio Guttiérez, Susana Mejía, Living Colour (Laura Luchtman and Ilfa Siebenhaar) in collaboration with Puma, and Studio Formafantasma.

The exhibition received structural support from the Province of Noord-Brabant, the City of Tilburg and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. The Dye Plant Garden was funded in part by the Friends of the TextielMuseum Foundation.