VIBEKE KLINT

Vibeke Klint – the queen of minimalist textiles

Vibeke Klint (1927-2019) was of great importance to Danish textile art with her simple, graphic rugs, textiles and site-specific decorations. She also influenced several generations of contemporary weavers through her weaving studio in Taarbæk, where she trained several of the textile designers and artists who have set the tone in the field over the past 30 years. Vibeke Klint started her career as a student with weaving pioneer Gerda Henning, who was a teacher at the School of Arts and Crafts at the Museum of Art and Design in Copenhagen. Even before her graduation in 1949, she was assigned to Gerda Henning's workshop. And when Gerda Henning died suddenly in 1951, her husband, the sculptor Gerhard Henning, offered Vibeke Klint to take over the weaving studio if she moved home from France, where she stayed to learn French tapestry techniques.

Through the Henning family, Vibeke Klint met her future husband, landscape architect Morten Klint, son of the legendary architect Kaare Klint, and in early 1957 the Klint family moved into their house in Taarbæk. The house became both the family's private home and Vibeke Klint's weaving studio, where she worked with her team of weavers until 2008. Several weavers say that there was a warm and family atmosphere at Klint, which has probably been a large part of the explanation why many of her weavers were often associated with the workshop as freelancers long after they had graduated. 

Vibeke and Morten Klint 1953

WORKLIFE, CRAFT AND DESIGN

Vibeke Klint's professional ouvre cannot be overstated, because the combination of the high work ethic, professional community and cozy atmosphere at the weaving studio has created an impressive CV with a versatile production of unique rugs and home textiles together with site-specific decorations of meeting rooms and significant buildings, concert halls, embassies, ministries and churches – all designed, colored, proportioned and materially selected by herself.

Her work excels at bridging the gap between art and architecture, between craftsmanship and tactility, between tradition and modernist renewal. The simple, geometric shapes, pointed angles and simple lines that are highlighted, shifted or toned down by the play of colors in the yarns are her indispensable signature. Vibeke Klint's visual effects are about cultivating beauty in the minimal. Daring to choose and stay the course – in colour, muster and technique. Her safe aesthetics and impressive life's work have had enormous significance for both contemporary and posterity when it comes to communicating and passing on craftsmanship and weaving traditions to future generations.

Photo by; Susanne Mertz

Vibeke Klint in her workshop in Taarbæk

"It must be both pliable, firm and tight, so that when it wears out, it will become prettier and prettier. You should not fret about rugs wearing out, but instead rejoice and discover the new color experiences hidden in the yarns that appear in connection with the wear. - Vibeke Klint


Over the years, Vibeke Klint also worked closely with the leading visual artists, furniture designers and architects of the time, such as Finn Juhl and Børge Mogensen, and there is no doubt that Vibeke Klint is the queen of Danish handwoven textiles. Textiles we are proud to be able to carry on at NORDICMODERN

Vibeke Klint's exhibition activity at home and abroad was overwhelming, and she also participated in professional work as a member of the boards of the Danish Design Council, the Arts and Crafts Council and the World Craft Council, as well as serving on the Academy Council for several periods. In connection with Vibeke Klint's 70th birthday in 1997, the book Vibeke Klint – The Weaver, written by her former student, Inge Alifrangis, was published.

Exhibition in Paustian furniture house, sep 1987

The year after Vibeke Klint's death, in 2020, the major work about Vibeke Klint written by weaver Gitte-Annette Knudsen, who worked for Klint in the period 2003-2008, was published. The book describes Vibeke Klint's working life through 50 years and presents for the first time a number of Vibeke Klint's sketches, watercolours and weaving samples, which give a professional, broad and sympathetic insight into her working methods.

"My rugs are primaily for walking on. I'm not trying to get some artistic message through with my rugs. It is their decorative effect that matters. I do not feel stepped on because you walk on the rugs. That is what they are meant for" - Vibeke Klint

Vibeke Klint received numerous awards, one of the first being the silver medal at the Triennale in Milan in 1954. In 1960 she received the Lunning Prize, in 1972 the Eckersberg Medal, in 1978 the Knud V. Engelhardt Scholarship, in 1987 the Danish Arts and Crafts Council's Annual Prize, in 1989 the C.F. Hansen Medal, in 1992 Denmark’s National bank’s Honorary Scholarship and Ole Haslund's Artists' Foundation. In 1996 she was presented with the Swedish Prince Eugen's Medal and in 1997 Lis Ahlmann's Scholarship. In 2000, Vibeke Klint was appointed Knight of the Order of the Dannebrog by Queen Margrethe II.

Award ceremony 1987. H.P. Clausen, Minister of Cultural Affairs and Vibeke Klint

More from vibeke Klint
Rugs

HANDWOVEN RUGS

In close collaboration with the Klint family, NORDICMODERN has recently put the original rug design into production as part of their collection of selected Vibeke Klint designs.

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Runners

HANDWOVEN RUNNERS

In collaboration with the Klint family NORDICMODERN has put together a collection of 7 different runners designs.

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Accessories

PERFECT ADDITIONS

Compliment your everyday with these exquisite Danish design accessories made to last. Find the perfect gift to any occasion. 

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