Monday, May 23, 2011

   If you are interested in superlative art quilts and enjoy historical tapestries and textiles, then...RUN, don't walk to these shows!!
 I recently enjoyed this amazing exhibition showing at the Zanesville Museum of Art, in Zanesville, Ohio.
SUPERLATIVES Ccontemporary Ohio Quilts opened Saturday May 14 and will run until July 14, 2011. The show " is unique in the history of Ohio quilt exhibitions as it includes six quilts by seven Ohio artists. Each artist works in different directions, creating a broad sampler of textile artistry."
 Such a wide variety of  technique and style you won't find in one place together very often. Linda French displays a more traditional style, yet her minute machine stitching could only be 21st century!  (  Although it is so perfect that you might think it was all done by hand.) Then there are the two artists using shibori dying in their work, yet they have very different results. Rebecca Cross uses silks and creates light, airy pieces and installations, while Sue Cavanaugh works on large cotton sateen. Deborah Melton Anderson's work is pieced using fabrics that she has manipulated and printed using heat transfers. The machine work of Sandra Palmer Ciolino bring another beautiful dimension to this show. June O'Neils use of raw edge applique will leave you amazed, and of course, Nancy Crow never disappoints. I especially enjoyed seeing her screen printed pieces.
  I was lucky enough to enjoy some of the lectures given by the artists on opening day. Nancy Crow, in particular, left me with a few things to think about. She really is an icon in the art-quilt movement. She was one of the original organizers of Quilt National, the Quilt/Surface Design Symposium and the Art Quilt Network.  I was thrilled to get to hear her speak. What I took away from her lecture was the importance of going after what you want, being persistent and not taking "no" for an answer; being professional and disciplined and above all, " do the work".  It was a reminder to really know yourself.

  "In Stitches" is another, smaller exhibition displayed next to, and con-currently with "SUPERLATIVES". This show highlights some of the wonderful textiles from the collection of the ZMA. It provides a very satisfying contrast to the contemporary show.
 I particularly enjoyed the "Man's Vest", 19th century from Turkey, that looked more child-sized, the "Kalarga Tapestry", late 19th century, made of linen, silk, velvet and cotton, and covered with beads and sequins. Also intriguing was  the"Bark Cloth" piece which is not woven at all, but made of tree bark.

  These are but a few of the interesting and inspiring pieces to view in this "bonus' show. Who knew the ZMA held such treasures?! Don't miss these shows!!

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