Saturday, April 10, 2010

Amish Abstractions and nothing new under the sun

I just bought a beautiful new book, Amish Abstractions, Quilts from the Collection of Faith and Stephen Brown. It is so lovely that I am looking at it and touching it with great care and in awe. Last post, I was pondering the nothing new under the sun deal and how, when I think I have done something cool and different, I soon discover that another has done something very similar. Some of you are familiar with Joe Cunningham...sometimes known now as Joe the Quilter. I have know his name for a long time, as he was the partner of Gwen Marston for years on Beaver Island in Michigan. Time has passed for sure and he is now curator of one of the museums in San Francisco hosting the exhibit from which this book came. He has written an essay for this book which has helped me with this "nothing new under the sun" thing. Joe says, "Every quilt has a story and every quilt tells a story." In my mind this is what makes the quilts special. A quilt is not just for pure design, it is for love or for gifting or for touching and feeling or for gazing upon with wonder and delight. So this is the way I will look at my quilts from now on. I will look at them, not just for how they look, but for the feeling they give to myself and to others...for their essence. Never again will I say...oooo someone else has made a quilt like mine...either today or 100 years ago. I will remember now, that my quilts, as are all quilts, full of the story and the comfort. Each quilt is therefore special.

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