Bangladesh, from the series Faith


Barbara Broekman

2014 tapestry
Materials polyester fr cotton acrylic

Artist Barbara Broekman uses textiles as a means to tell a story. By translating a distressing subject into a large woven tapestry, Broekman invites the viewer to look closely, and to reflect on the intense beauty of the image.

photo: Tommy de Lange | A127-1.jpg
photo: Tommy de Lange
photo: Gert Jan van Rooij | 014.BARBARA BROEKMAN - FAITH2014 - Bangladesh detail - 205x148cm - PH.GJvanROOIJ.jpg
photo: Gert Jan van Rooij
photo: Stijn van Santen | 1.Atelier BB, foto Stijn van Santen.jpg
photo: Stijn van Santen
photo: Tommy de Lange | A127-4.jpg
photo: Tommy de Lange
photo: Tommy de Lange | A127-3.jpg
photo: Tommy de Lange


  • Bangladesh, from the series Faith
  • Barbara Broekman
  • tapestry
  • art
  • Stef Miero
  • 2014
  • bar-bang-A-70s
  • SA000131
  • double weave
  • photographic, heavy


  • polyester fr | PES FR | flame retardant
  • cotton | CO | biological
  • acrylic | PC


For the series Faith, Broekman was inspired by newspapers and horrifying events. She believes the photos are too beautiful to disappear in the endless, anonymous stream of press images. By appropriating them in this way, she acknowledges and immortalises them.

Bangladesh shows a girl with outstretched arms, one of the few survivors from the collapsed textile factory in the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh, being pulled from the rubble. From a distance, the entire scene is visible; up close, the image blurs and the emphasis shifts to the weaving technique.


Broekman transforms the photos into an abstract geometric pattern. The editing of the photos ensures that the weave can be accurately determined. All the pieces are based on a fixed colour palette, giving the series unity.


Barbara Broekman

Based in Amsterdam, Broekman (1955) studied textiles at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy (1978-1982) and the California College of Arts, Berkeley, California. Her work is included in the collections of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the Amsterdam Museum, the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum in New York and the TextielMuseum. Besides autonomous pieces, Broekman regularly makes commissioned work, including for the Holland America Line, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Dutch embassy in Amman, Jordan, the Palace of Justice in Amsterdam and Hotel Arena in Amsterdam.

photo: Mats van Soolingen | BB foto Mats v Soolingen..jpg
photo: Mats van Soolingen

Exhibitions & Publications

  • ‘Tinkebell & Barbara Broekman: A smart girl is prepared (for her future)’, 1 December 2017 to 13 January 2018, Galerie Vriend van Bavink Amsterdam.

  • Rinskje Koelewijn. ‘I don’t have that narcism’, NRC Handelsblad, 26 June 2014.
  • Kaira van Wijk. ‘Big, bigger, biggest’, Het Parool, 7 October 2017.
  • Jan Pieter Ekker. ‘I soften while she hardens’, Het Parool, 2 December 2017. 
  • ‘Barbara Broekman – hand-embroidered and woven series’, 28 November 2015 to 24 January 2016, Museum Rijswijk.
  • ‘Good and Evil: Barbara Broekman dresses the Kloosterkerk’, 8 June to 18 September 2017, Kloosterkerk Den Haag.