An art work produced by quilters from the Five Valleys area of Gloucestershire is being exhibited in York at the Quilt Museum, Britain’s first museum dedicated to quilting and the textile arts.
Set to be one of the highlights of the exhibition, the Five Valley’s ‘Season’s’ quilt was produced by an unusual collaboration between eight local craftswomen.
Marilyn Miles, instigator of the project, said, ‘It’s the first time we’ve produced an art work of this nature. The project was designed to allow both highly experienced quilters and relative beginners to work on the same piece. It’s been a lot of fun!’
The craft of quilting originated as a way to use remnants of cloth to make decorative items in poor households, and the Five Valley’s quilt is a deliberate step back to these origins. The participants raided their own fabric scraps to generate the material for the quilt, and the combination of colours from these fabrics suggested the seasonal theme. The artistic director for the project was Anne Weldon, an experienced quilter who has been exhibited in several regional art exhibitions. Anne organised the structure for the quilt, drawing inspiration from the natural world to allow the colours flowing contours. Anne described the process as, ‘Challenging!’
‘Making sure that each member of the group was taking away the right pieces of fabric and that the separately worked on pieces all fitted together correctly was the hardest part.’ Pat Dalton, a relatively recent convert to the craft of quilting was delighted to be able to be involved. ‘It’s been such a pleasure working with the other quilters, I’ve learnt so much more about creating a quilt designed as an art piece.’ The Five Valleys ‘Seasons’ Quilt is on display in the Aldwark Gallery at the Quilt Museum in York from the 7th September to 16th October 2010.
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