Dust drama. What role do embroidery play in Ieva Iltnere’s latest exhibition? / Day

In the gallery The art of XO an exhibition of the audience ‘s favorite painter Ieva Iltnere has been opened Embroidered selfie. Upon entering the exhibition, the visitor immediately sees a small dark gloomy canvas with the inscription “Dust Drama” embroidered at an angle. Ieva Iltnere has sewn the letter “m” from the letter “n”, applying for the genre and giving her a golden key to open the door to a fabulous realm. It is known from fairy tales that the hero’s first supernatural task is to cleanse the living space of pests, mosquitoes and other evil spirits. And it’s not just about being an honest mother. Let us remember the ancient Greek Heracles and the Latvian fortress Kurbad.

Strictly speaking, embroidery was also practiced by both men and women, especially in medieval England, until the division of labor by gender devalued the art. The profession, marginalized and underpaid, became an integral part of women’s history. Art historian feminist Rozika Pārker in her book Reverse stitch. Embroidery and femininity / The Subversive Stitch. Embroidery and the Making of the Feminine, 1984), which explores the history of embroidery, including contemporary art, writes: “An embroiderer holds in his hands a single object that exists both in the outside world and in her mind.” Women embroidered images, words and sentences. By finding a form for thoughts and feelings, they became aware of their inner wealth and promoted its development. The needle tip of Ieva Iltnere’s exhibition hit the living artery of feminism.

The age of the blue dwarfs

A few years ago, Ieva Iltnere saw an embroidery in the antiques of Valdemāra Street in Riga, imagining that it could be framed and placed in a country house in Zosēni. Bought one, then another, until such a collection emerged: “pictures” embroidered on linen or cotton fabrics with blue or less often red threads. Although Ansis Cīrulis and Arvīds Dzērvītis stood for good taste in the interwar period of Latvia, providing examples worthy of imitation, although Jūlijs Madernieks tiredly encouraged on sharp narrow-angle ornaments, Latvian goldsmiths preferred to import goods with lovely foreign motifs. These were flowers, landscapes with windmills, fairy-tale characters Ansitis and Grietiņa in clogs, Little Red Riding Hood and a wolf or active dwarfs. Lots of dwarfs. In the countries of origin of the patterns or patterns, indigo blue or red beetle embroidery resonated with painted porcelain and tiled stoves. Such handicrafts of the 1930s, which were used daily until the 1970s, are now on display in the library of the Malnava College of the Latvia University of Agriculture. All that remains is to agree Dr. phil. Igor Shuvayev, who in the book Preludes (1998) writes: “Housekeeping is to a greater extent not the art of housekeeping, but the art of maintaining the world and finding one’s place in it, taking order and proportioning to it.”

In the countryside of Latvia, embroidery proved a fabulous well-being in which food is in abundance, everything is surrounded by warmth, cleanliness and order and united by one love.

Home blessing

The beauty of home economics is not enough for life. Daile kept the secret ingredient – the magical defense against the evils of the outside world – and ensured the family’s happiness. Catholic and Orthodox idols took care of the blessing of the house, they were “sealed” with decorated towels. As mystical soul mates and family unifying towels, towels formed the most important part of the textile, serving both in wedding and funeral rituals and in everyday life. The blessing was also protected by embroidered “pictures”. The best of the unbreakable borders was guarded by the cross-stitch – so many crosses! But the other stitches, the handles and the chains, were good. The placement of the embroidery accentuated the most important parts of the closed, private space. The center was defined by a fireplace, while the distinction between the inner and the outer world was marked by a threshold, a door, a chimney, and windows. All the windows needed curtains. Guards. They were decorated with what the housewife wanted to include from the outside. Also “marked” the place of the table and bed, and the place of water.

What does the exquisite aesthetic Ieva Iltnere do at the Painting Department of the Latvian Academy of Arts, and especially at the Decorators Department at the Riga School of Applied Arts, with this heritage, in which pure faith, naivety, integrity and stencilling shine and shine?

Ieva Iltnere continues the family tradition. Her handwriting is similar to the handwriting of her father, the rector of the Latvian Academy of Arts, Edgars Iltners. Mom Erika Iltnere, being a production association Riga fabric artist, invented fabric printing, and her father Eduards Kunstbergs was a men’s tailor, sewing coats in the Talsi district In the river.

Eve selects already frozen shapes, finished objects, in her workshop she dips and paints white fabrics in monochrome tones, very delicate, imitating the effects of mold and rot or other aging and dirt. The obtained illusory textures naturally fit into the chain of Ieva Iltnere’s paintings. She does everything with joy and pleasure, with pleasure, realizing what others have forgotten in the pursuit of foam and chag – working slowly, long and patiently. Small but important additions – embroidery with a thread of matching thickness – introduce modern signs and formulas into the fabrics. When applying the embroidery to the left, the artist highlights the knots, stretches and thread ends. The visibility of the handicraft technique delays the gaze and slows down to see what is most important here. Preserving the idea of ​​anonymous embroiderers, Ieva shakes the amplitude of the double message with the softness of the needle. She also uses medications. Removing the thread stitches leaves a hole streak. Bald stitches. They stand out clearly when the canvas is primed. The needle is a weapon that “resists the limitations of femininity” (Rozika Parkere).

When arranging the exhibition, Ieva Iltnere “pulls out” a line of real threads from the blackness of a couple of canvases. Line – a series of equal points, explains the geometry. One of such works sewn into the gallery space is Pingo, ergo sum / Gleznoju. So am I. The artist embroidered a paraphrase of the famous French philosopher René Descartes, returning to her 2002 painting. The double does not break.


Critic Vilnis Vējš had once concluded that Ieva does not paint men. At the exhibition Embroidered selfie there is a clear numerical superiority of male beings. In a red-thread painting with embroidered spells “Fiskekaker… Pinnekjott… Rokelaks … Rommegrot” a dwarf splits firewood. Eve read her transcript in a Norwegian dictionary: “Fish cutlets… Dried lamb ribs… Smoked salmon… Sour cream porridge.” In the painting Water two dwarves roam around the pump so that water has spilled almost the entire rectangular area. In a bright old rose painting, a young lady standing by the stove with a bow in her hair is stirring a boil. From the other pot a cloud of washing steam and smell. The intoxicated chimney sweep (it is clear that a prince masked by soot) with the chimney sweeps freezes, bends in a respectful greeting: the cylinder in his hand, but the head is no longer there. The intellect is off. The signature of the painting explains, “Dear, I lost my head.” Yes, there are such girls somewhere else. Maybe in Malnava?

If I had to vote for my favorite, I would call a dark-painted painting Angel with the inscription: “Come wash, do not be afraid of water.” There are so many different dreams here: four underground water dwarves and a compatriot carrying water with carriers. A divine angel with embroidered white wings descended on the bowl of the mouth. Washes from the evil eye. Washing your face is the first thing to do when you return home. Purity is not just white. It can also be black like a swan. What could be more beautiful than a black swan? Two black swans flying in the center of the painting. Souls are drawn to his sun. The last straw in the sea of ​​emotions, which shakes the eyes with tears, are the painted side edges of the painting. Ah my art, love your treasures!

“You are my soul”

Sentimentalism is a well-forgotten direction of art and literature of the 18th century, extreme in its exaggeration, because it puts the whole arsenal on feelings. It tends to come back when rationalism takes over the world. Sentimentalism is self-centered and self-centered, albeit not opposed.

Enne Burda, the founder of the legendary fashion magazine in devastated Germany after the Second World War, chose Annina Tārava as the ideal publication. Sweet song Anke von Tharau plays in the movie Before Burda. Mrs. Economic Miracle / Aenne Burda: Die Wirtschaftswunderfrau. In the 17th century, the poet Simon Dach dedicated a heartfelt love poem composed by Friedrich Zilher to the wedding of Anna Neander and Pastor Johannes Portatius. The poem from the Lower German dialect of Mēmele was translated into German by the philosopher and poet Johann Gottfried Herder. The song of love became popular. It was sung and still sung by the Germans, and the Latvians once sang “by feeling”. “Tāravas Anniņ, my joy is beloved, / you are my soul, possessions and honor,” Song ornament for young men and men (1872). From the next sheet music collection music snobby this song, which sits in the three German K – Children, Kitchen, Church – in combination, eradicate. 3K depth is measured when everything is lost.

Sentimentality near war shows its special nature. It highlights the most important thing that belongs to a person – the soul that dwells in the blood. Life.

A little dark work Brothers cemetery Ieva Iltnere is embroidered on a towel woven on a drill according to her painting made in 2002. In the garden of souls, rows of bright dots ignite in dark mourning. The point has no size, again explained by geometry. There is no size for the soul either. In turn, in the painting Summit At the stove, three bearded men boil the boil while the bombers flying overhead throw the bombs in rhythmic rounds. Destructive virility. A tin bucket of water was placed next to the explosion to extinguish the fire. The names of the aggressors are changing, while the fragile house manifesto remains.

My white house

Ieva Iltnere painted the largest text in a related calligraphy in the new annex of the Latvian National Opera and Ballet Building, which was completed at the end of 2001 according to the design of architect Juris Gertner. The then director Andrejs Žagars liked Ieva Iltnere’s painting Icicle characters (2002), which interprets a poem by Joseph Brodsky, and the director wanted to see something similar on the wall of the opera. Ieva chose an excerpt from the memoirs of opera singer Marisa Vētra sparkling with joy and full of tenderness My white house. Dotted words with acrylic like silver for a whole month.

Now in the exhibition we see paintings with only one word left. At one time, many embroideries indicated what the items were for: matches, onions, garlic, or pegs. A holder of a tunnel-shaped newspaper with the word “Paper” came into the antique shop. It inspired a painting dedicated to materiality Ogleshown in the first room of the gallery. But in the dome hall there is a jump in the top league. The inscription of the coronavirus period has turned into a silvery painting Tikai/Only. There is only one choice. A pastor in the Valtaiķi church said: which side a woman will stand on, that side will exist.

Ieva Iltnere

Exhibition Embroidered selfie

In the gallery The art of XO to 11.VI

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.