Bella Rune

Bella Rune

Textile Subtexts in an Augmented reality

Through three art projects where the smartphone has been used as an emphatic tool, a feminist scanner and a playful reenactment, this presentation discusses how a triangulation of cultural heritage, smartphones and the social body can be used to find new sightlines through history and uncover material subtexts.

The collection of portraits in the Board room of Stockholm School of Economics, Soviet propaganda textiles from the collection of The Museum of Textile in Ivanovo and historic red banners from the Swedish Working-class movement are all massaged through these art projects. Traces of positions of protest, power structures and propaganda in cultural heritage are used as a lens to get fresh perspectives on current situations.

Bella Rune (born 1971) is an artist based in Stockholm, Sweden. She is educated at Chelsea College of Arts in London (1995–1998) and Beckman’s school of Design (1992-94). She works with sculpture, including performative elements and experiments with different materials and techniques. In the ongoing project Konsekvensanalys (Impact analysis) she explores the interface between physical reality and a virtual world with augmented reality often relating to existing collections in museums or institutions. The project has been displayed in exhibitions at Stadsskogen, Uppsala, Sweden (2015), Konstmuseet i Norr, Kiruna, Sweden (2016), Tensta Konsthall, Sweden (2018) and Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow, Russia (2018), Munch, Oslo (2022) as well as a site specific permanent public commission at Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden (2018) and Västerås Stad (2020).

Many of her exhibitions and projects circle around textile as metaphor, history, methodology, materials and techniques and the lens of textile is present when she offers readings of contemporary relationships to digital technology. Bella Rune is a former professor of Fine Art, Textile at Konstfack, University College of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm and educational work is an integral part of her artistry. As part of her research, she curated the exhibition Textila undertexter (Textile Subtexts) together with Helena Selder. It was first presented at Marabouparken, Sweden (2016) and later at Malmö Konstmuseum, Sweden (2017). In the exhibition she made a larger installation also serving as exhibition design and curatorial framework. With Galleri Magnus Karlsson at the art fair Market in Stockholm 2018 she received great attention for the installation Vertical Network Performance, a series of mobile sculptures in mohair yarn that combines her interest in craft, history, and contemporary conditions. Her exhibition Suspended Animation at Carl Eldh’s studio museum continued to explore these topics and combined different strands of her digital and material-based practice. Her latest solo exhibition at Galleri Magnus Karlsson, “Digging”, 2023, continued to explore the role of textiles in human history through working with 3d printing, archeological findings, wood, and bronze. Rune has an ongoing collaborate with artist Jonas Nobel, sometimes under the name SAGOVOLO, and together they havemade exhibitions, workshops in education, performative site-specific work and public commissions, like “Träningläger för föreställningsförmågan” (2020), a public art commission integrated in the architecture of Sjöviksskolan in Årstaberg, Stockholm and recently finished an extensive work, “Spoken Textiles in an intertwined system” for the new court building in Malmö with Public Art Agency Sweden.

For more information visit the Gallery Magnus Karlsson website –

The lecture is part of “1,2,3 Playtime. A lecture and workshop series in the field of gamification” organised by Inter Arts Center and financed by Region Skåne.

Photo credit: Bella Rune

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