Saturday, June 4, 2011

Quilt National report 4 -- innovation

The award for Most Innovative Use of the Medium at this year's Quilt National went to Naomi Adams for her quilt, "Greek."
I have often disagreed with the judges' choice on this award, most notably in 2003 when it went to Michael James for a piece that was Photoshopped and printed onto fabric.  It was a striking quilt, but by 2003, you may recall, there was little new about either Photoshop or printing from the computer onto fabric.

But this year I thought the judges were absolutely on track.  Head-on, the quilt has an interesting overall design of script that appears to make words, but on closer inspection is nonsense -- or as graphic designers would call it, greeking.  But close-up, you realize that the letters are three-dimensional, each one constructed from a sandwich of black fabric and dyed batting, formed into the appropriate twist and glued to the background quilt.  They stand out about an inch from the background.  Wow!  (Sorry, my camera saw it as brown but it's really black.)

And if you think making it was hard, how about getting it to the Dairy Barn?  Since the quilt couldn't be rolled or folded, Naomi had a custom wood crate made, and the quilt hung from rods inside the crate so it was always flat.

PS Naomi is having quite a month!  Her work was also featured in the new issue of Surface Design.


  1. I am so glad you posted a photo of this side on. I saw it on another blog with the artist standing beside. I was trying to work out what made it different than stitching on a background because it didn't really seem like that.

    and it couldn't be rolled because it would crush the letters? are they also quilted?
    Sandy in the UK

  2. Sandy -- I believe the letters are quilted; when I reviewed my detail shots blown up huge, there appear to be lines of stitching extending from the background to the cut edges of the letters.

  3. Wow! I am so glad you showed us how this is made. It was a mystery to me. Very innovative!!

  4. Kathy, thank you for the kind words about my piece.

    The letter pieces are most definitely quilted. It is what gives them their undulating or thick and thin ribbon-like quality!

    It was great to see your work in the show. Your piece is truly lovely and a delight to see in person.