Call it angel earth

2023, solo exhibition at Superhouse Vitrine  New York, US

For Call It Angel Earth, Külper takes over Superhouse Vitrine, transforming both galleries into topographical wool landscapes. Using a combination of traditional tufting techniques and 3D embroidery, Külper creates a domestic world of fuzzy furnishings imbued with personal memories and spirituality.

Külper was born in Sweden, a descendant of Germans who escaped the Nazis. She was raised in the thickly forested countryside. Isolated by distance, language, and culture, Külper’s family was alienated from the Swedish populace. They turned to Anthroposophy, a belief system emphasizing one’s ability to physically reach the spiritual world, in order to make sense of their new reality.The artist states:

“My grandparents escaped the Nazis in a homemade sailboat, arriving on the coast of Sweden with a few wet clothes and a silver spoon. Their hometown was erased from the surface of the earth. And so was our history. We never integrated with Swedes. We were more connected to the sky than to the earth. We saw what the others didn't. Our search for home through our natural surroundings brought us magical places, with glittering eyes and shimmering faces of wonder. We were alone together.”

This background informs the artist’s two large scale installations at Superhouse, which coalesce into an immersive, personal journey. In the front gallery, Dancing Around the Pool of Life takes center stage. The tapestry, employing iridescent blown glass mirrors – a collaboration with Norwegian glass artist Anna-Linda Gabriel – is a reflection on the fragility of life, referencing the recent passing of Külper’s beloved aunt and cousin. In the back gallery, Creation of the Magic Light tapestry and its accompanying three-dimensional tufted stools and rugs, recalls joyful memories of her engineer grandfather, who would tinker for hours in his garage on various home-spun inventions. The environments create cozy spaces (or “soft spots” as the artist calls them) for the artist to reconnect with happy times with cherished family.  

“I am excited to present Alfie’s work at Superhouse. The mysticism and spirituality embedded in these works underscores the power of textiles as an artistic and communicative medium.”

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Photo credit: Louis Corzo