QUILT NATIONAL 2009 Postcard image: "City" by Paula Kovarik (click on the image to see the quilting stitches!)
The caption on the back of the postcard:
"Marking its 30th anniversary this biennial juried show and traveling exhibit has been called "the premier international showcase for contemporary quilts" by the Wall Street Journal. The works are rich with metaphors, stories and fresh, original interpretations of a traditional medium. The techniques used include all manner of fabric manipulation: printing, painting, embellishing, dying, and more.
Quilt National was intended to demonstrate the transformations taking place in the world of quilting. Its purpose was then, and still is, to carry the definition of quilting far beyond its traditional parameters and to promote quilt making as what it always has been --an art form." --Visual Arts Center of Northwest Florida Panama City, Florida
My words: There were no traditional quilts here! The exhibit was well done and the quilts were amazingly detailed and high quality. I was surprised, however, that the number of quilts shown was small, (maybe 24? I didn't count) so I am not sure if this was a partial (traveling) exhibit, or if the number of high quality quilts being submitted has decreased dramatically. When I first saw a Quilt National exhibit years ago, at the Dairy Barn in Athens, Ohio, there were hundreds of quilts, both traditional and contemporary. The majority of the 2009 quilts were machine-quilted, and the designs and technical expertise were phenomenal. No photographs of the quilts were allowed, so I am only showing the promotional postcard I picked up during my visit. This was contemporary painting with fabric and thread, and I am pleased to see that quilting is alive and well in contemporary art. The colors, textures, and variety of treatments were stunning!