Thursday, December 11, 2014

Can Art Quilts Influence Views On The Environment?

     This past weekend I was lucky enough to attend a marvelous art quilt exhibit. It is a SAQA exhibit titled Piecing Together a Changing Planet. Through their art on the 26 quilts, the 22 artists expressed their feelings about climate change and environmental issues affecting our planet and our national parks. The setting of Biscayne National Park in Homestead, Florida where the show premiered is amazingly beautiful. It is set on lovely Biscayne Bay. As I walked toward the building, I was filled with a sense of tranquility and peace as I viewed fish jumping in a small mangrove-lined marina in front of the building and families having picnics just outside. It is a wonderful venue for the show. Although it is located in quite an isolated location, there were a lot of people there in addition to the artists attending the opening reception. I’m sure it will be well visited during its stay.
     Maya Schonenberger did a fantastic job curating the show. The quilts are all the same size, well lit, and each has the artist’s statement nicely positioned next to it. They are well spaced along the walls of the auditorium just inside the gift shop and make for a very attractive overall look as you walk in. And each one up close has remarkable details. Also, it was very interesting to see how many different takes there are on the topic from very abstract to realistic and looks at individual animals to global ideas. As usual with SAQA shows, there is a catalogue available for purchase at the SAQA Store.
Here is a sampling of the quilts. I wish I had better photos, but all I had available was my iPad and it doesn’t have a flash.
One of the walls of the exhibit
Is It Safe by
Gabriele Di Tota

Encroachment by
Andrea F. Huffman
Gabriele's piece is about the worry of our food being contaminated.

Andrea's piece is about the importance of mangroves and the worry of encroachment of urban sprawl upon their environment.

Wings of Fire by
Melani K. Brewer

End of Eden by
Bobbi Baugh and John Lewis

Melani's piece is about how climate change has reduced the plants necessary to support the monarch's migration.

Bobbi and John's piece is modeled after a Hieronymus Bosch painting and it depicts modern day personalities and a diminishing water supply down to the last drop at the bottom.

Where Will We Go? by
Gretchen P. Jolles

Last Leaf by
Linda S. Hoffmeister
Gretchen's piece is about displaced wildlife from fires and other disasters caused from climate change.

Linda's piece is about how the introduction of non-native species threatens the existence of native species.

Here is a list of where the exhibit’s traveling schedule:
Biscayne National Park, Homestead, Florida: December 5, 2014 – March 1, 2015
Glacier National Park, Hockaday Museum, Kalispell, Montana: July 23 – September 12, 2015
Cleveland Metroparks Watershed Stewardship Center, Parma, Ohio: Fall 2015
Lowell National Historical Park, Lowell, Massachusetts: December 2015 - February 2016
Statue of Liberty National Monument, New York, NY: March - May, 2016
Cape Cod National Seashore, Wellfleet, Massachusetts: Summer 2016
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Gatlinburg, Tennessee: November 2016 - January 2017

I'm linking this to Off The Wall Friday where you can find other art quilt blogs. Please make comments on the artist's posts so that they know you stopped by. Thanks for visiting.


  1. What a great exhibit, Regina! I don't even remember SAQA's Call. But, I am glad to see it out there. Hope it influences people. It certainly is going to some great venues!

    1. It was a regional call to Florida members I think. Yes, it's pretty cool that it is visiting the Statue of Liberty, too.

  2. Beautiful! Thanks for posting!

    1. I thought it was very impressive. Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Oh! These are fantastic! Thank you sharing them. You are so lucky to live close enough to attend such a show.

    1. Actually I live about a 6 hour drive away, but I was visiting Art Basel in Miami that weekend so it was convenient to visit this show, too.

    2. Yes, that's where I was over the weekend too! I was quite surprised at the distance to Biscayne Bay from Miami! But I agree completely with your report- the place was beautiful and I felt that same peace walking towards the building- lovely! I was only about 3 hours from home. Glad you made the extra effort, and glad I did too! (I had to leave early before the opening!

  4. Thank you so much for the posting of a portion of this show. How delighted I am to learn that the exhibit will be north of me by about 3 hours from late July through early September...I will most definitely go! Kristin

  5. Thank you for sharing the show... a great idea and wonderful interpretations!

    1. It really was such a wonderful idea and it was put together and organized so well.

  6. Thank you for sharing this. It is stunning!

    1. My pleasure to share for those who live too far away to see it in person. The artists did such a super job.

  7. I love these! And kudos to SAQA for sending them to these national parks. Thanks for sharing these and for adding the images and your thougths about each one. Great recap.

    1. I was so impressed, too. Glad my iPad got decent images despite not having a flash.


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