Saturday, November 03, 2007

Art Crazy Quilt

Michaelangelo said "I am still learning." and isn't it wonderful to still have so many things to learn?!! I have just finished looking at Allison Aller's blog, which I do each morning to enjoy with my first coffee, and was amazed to see that there was no real "Art Crazy Quilt" division in that Houston Quilt Market. My article in Needlepoint Now for this month, just out, deals with that subject - and as I wrote it, I asked Allie for a definition or two and comments. I have shown this piece before, but not since I blocked it and got it into better shape for the photo - nor have I shown the corner of the finished quilt from which I took the design. Beautiful thing to inspire a needlepoint designer. Anyway, here is what she told me - and what I used in the article: "I am told that the quilt world is divided into two camps, "sane quilters," who essentially work with cotton fabric and the quilted surface, and the "crazy quilters" who will use any fabric, and whose work is, by tradition, seldom quilted. Their surface is covered by hand-work. There are traditionalists and innovators in each camp as well." I asked Allie to define for me the term "ART CRAZY QUILT," and her answer was this: "A contemporary exploration of the traditional crazy quilt. Fancy and unusual fabrics, embroidery, and random piecing are combined with three dimensional embellishments, beadwork, and ribbonwork of all kinds and materials to personally express the artist's vision." Great!! So here is the picture of my piece in needlepoint - as well as it's inspiration: The quilt is called " Summer Mandala" - you can see it in progress from beginning to finish on her blog. I have already started on the next one, which as I remember, is on the top left of this gorgeous thing. I believe the same thing happened in the needlepoint world in about the mid 80's that Allie describes in the quilt world - just too much going on with the addition of wonderful varieties of fibers - and beads and all kinds of things, and now I feel like I'm tilting at windmills trying to get a bit of order and good taste back into the design part of the industry, as I have lately seen some rather awful (in my opinion) things going on for apparent lack of anything new to do. Some of it gets into the realm of stretching the capabilities of a medium beyond its limits - forcing it to do things not inherent in its nature. I don't know what to think.!!! I'm hoping that the crazy quilt renditions will allow stitchers free reign to use and enjoy these things, but keep them within the realm of "orderly artistic chaos"

5 comments:

Granny Fran said...

I love your interpretation of Allie's CQ as well as your commentary on orderly chaos in quilting and needlepoint. Even in gardening I love the chaos of an abundance of colorful plants sort of wafting out of a carefully defined bed of some sort. It must come from my Presbyterian theology, we want everything in order, but, for Heaven's sake, not boring.

WesternWoodburner said...

Those two quilt blocks are beautiful. "orderly artistic chaos" that is funny. I’ll have to remember that.

Allison Ann Aller said...

I sooooo love what you've done with your design. It is such an original look in needlepoint!
I am so honored you feel moved to use any of my designs as your jumping off point....

Debra Spincic said...

Very handsome! I especially love the outer border.

Susan said...

Oh, I love it! That lace that is on the curve, that Allie died, is a sample I sent to her, and I love the way you interpreted it!