Barbro Nilsson Rugs Barbro Nilsson nee Lundberg (1899–1983) is one of the most renowned and respected designers and master weavers in Sweden’s mid-century handcraft Renaissance. Nilsson was immensely creative and productive as an artist. However, she was also a great leader and teacher. These talents landed her the position of artistic director at the Marta Maas-Fjetterstrom atelier after the founder’s death. Nilsson’s long and illustrious career began in the 1920s when she created textile cartoons and immense tapestry versions of modern Swedish art by Sven Erixson and other artists who were at the forefront of the contemporary movement.
Even as a weaving student in Stockholm’s famous art academies, Nilsson’s work was highly acclaimed. This recognition led to her teaching at the prestigious Konstfack, also known as the University College of Arts Crafts and Design, where she directed the textiles department from 1947 through 1957. Around the same time, Nilsson was selected by Marta Maas-Fjetterstrom to replace her as the firm’s creative leader. While Fjetterstrom was instrumental in developing a grassroots handcraft revival, Nilsson guided the firm through its most successful years from 1942 through 1970 when mid-century trends gripped the international design world.
Nilsson’s original patterns and textile interpretations of great contemporary art proved her talents as a master weaver and designer. Her designs were influential, and her passion for creating radiated within her family and community of peers. Her mother was a successful painter and garden architect; she was married to a sculptor; and her son is a photographer. A number of the most iconic designs ever created by the Marta Maas-Fjetterstrom atelier are attributed to Nilsson, and her impact on Scandinavian style is undeniable. Color, personal inspiration, innovative weaving techniques and design expertise all contributed to the enduring success of Barbro Nilsson’s flat-weave carpets, tapestries and remarkable mid-century designs.
View our current collection of vintage Scandinavian Barbro Nilsson rugs below: