Patch pillow by Rebecca Atwood.]
Next month a new MFA, Boston exhibition will show antique American quilts in a different light, comparing the brilliantly colored, typically geometric textiles to Abstract Expressionist and Op Art works. This survey of pieces collected by artists Paul Pilgrim and Gerald Roy -- what grew to be among the most distinguished quilt collections in the world -- Quilts and Color will be accompanied by a 144-page book previewed here.
When it comes to patches of cloth stitched together, personally I gravitate to indigo. Anything that makes me think of Jane Birkin's jeans.
Gee's Bend quilt, above. In the mid-1960s, Loretta Pettway created this using denim and cotton. (A reminder for art teachers and design students: Auburn University's Women's Studies program created a site loaded with resources related to the Freedom Quilting Bee and the history of Gee's Bend, Alabama.)
[Detail view via MFA, Boston: Cotton plain weave, wax resisted and printed. 2004. Ghana.]
The Grafton Chair.