Why Quilts...

We keep a personal digital history in silicon. In the past humans (Americans) kept a physical record of photo albums,  heirlooms, memorabilia and quilts. Quilts extend from a need for warm bedding and community produced goods. They are personal social records of communities in a way. In current modern society such analog items have come to be utilized as novelty and decor. Quilts in a way are a women's way of saying "I'm retired". They have lost their luster in the home. 

Quilts are an expression of the domestic artisan. Asia has many folk crafts, specialist, and multi-generational craftspeople. America has the quilt. The antique quilt utilizes many different types of fabric types, natural dyes, and printing methods. Because the quilts were scrapped together it took a bit of artistic genius to put them together into a complete quilt. There are never two that are exactly alike. The stitching or the cut of the squares, the selection of the fabric they each have their own unique beauty. It is something very akin to shibui, and after they've been passed down a few generations they sometime have a hint of wabi-sabi to them. 

We live in a world where we can manufacture any textile instantaneously, and where clothing and textiles are manufactured in the poorest countries, in environmentally harmful, and poisonous (economically, physically, and artistically) ways. There is an immeasurable amount of reusable, dead-stock, vintage fabrics and textiles at hand that the emerging artist can use. All of this could avoid an enormous output of social, artistic, and environmental pollution. 

I believe that if two people from anywhere in the world met and if they had a quilt between them they could have a conversation despite, language, cultural, or ethnic barriers. Quilts are global cultural translators, and every culture in every country around the world has something similar to the American quilt. But they aren't just conversation starters, they are well made and reliable. 

Everyone had a grandma and everyone is a part of a family whether virtual or genetic; all we have is our past and our community. From here the possibilities are endless...