University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
School of Architecture College of Design

Helena Hernmarck

Date of Interview: April 20, 2009
Location of Interview: Elmer L. Anderson Library,
University of Minnesota,
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Length of Transcript:



Audio Clips:


19 pages

View Online Link


Listen to Audio Clip 1

Listen to Audio Clip 2

(These audios require QuickTime)



Biographical Summary

Helena Hernmarck was born in Sweden and has a B.A. from Konstfack University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm. She has operated her own weaving studio for 45 years in Canada, England, New York, and currently Connecticut, designing and executing large scale tapestries. Her awards include the American Institute of Architects’ Craftsmanship Medal, 1973; Sweden’s Prins Eugen Medal, 1999; and Swedish American of the Year, 2000. Hernmarck has exhibited at museums throughout the world including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Kunstindustrimuseet, Copenhagen, and the Prins Eugens Waldermarsudde Museum, Stockholm. Hernmarck has also taught widely. In 2005, she was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts. 


Interview Topics

Hernmarck talks about meeting Jack Lenor Larsen in 1965; how her work came to be included in Larsen’s books; the similarities between Larsen’s and Hernmarck’s weaving philosophies; Larsen’s globalism; Larsen as craftsman, as textile producer and as a unique person; and Larsen’s time at Cranbrook Academy of Art.



Sears Bank Tower (1974)
Quilted silk hanging on the main floor of the
Sears Tower

Admiral’s Club, Dallas/Fort Worth Airport (1974)
Leather and fabric patchwork mural commissioned
by American Airlines

Funding for these oral histories was provided by a Craft Research Fund Grant from the University of North Carolina, Asheville Center for Craft, Creativity & Design.


Contact Information

Goldstein Museum of Design

364 McNeal Hall,

1985 Buford Ave, St. Paul, MN 55108

P: 612-624-7434 |

[directions and maps]