Deborah-Koenker-Visual-Artist-Vancouver_Textile-Art_Daphne

Daphne + Lot’s Wife Talk

2003-2004


This feminist piece protesting violence against women imagines a conversation between Daphne and Lot’s wife.  In Greek mythology, Daphne--pursued by Apollo with rape as the intention --begged her father, the river god Peneus, for help; he transformed her into a Laurel tree.  The biblical figure of Lot’s wife is nameless, identified only as her husband’s possession. Commanded by God to leave the evils of Sodom and Gomorrah and not to look back. she turned to look back on her neighbours--likely out of compassion-- and was turned into a pillar of salt. 

In one selvage edge Daphne didn’t have a chance, Lot’s wife didn’t have a name is repeated in hand embroidery along 30 feet of yellow duppioni silk. The opposite selvage is embroidered with text excerpts from Amnesty International statistics on violence against women. A line of hemp rope runs down the center, entwined with tangles of human hair in a range of colours. In the accompanying audio I play Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty Waltz on piano to the sound of machine gun fire.

Deborah-Koenker-Visual-Artist-Vancouver_Textile-Art_Daphne