Friday, March 30, 2012

AZ Regional Study Meeting and Centennial Quilt Exhibit

A block from a quilt in
Grand Endeavors

Hello again!
I'm sorry I've been unable to post for awhile. As my dear Aunt Agnes used to enjoy saying, "I have so much to do and I'm so busy besides." She even embroidered the saying on a dish towel for my Mom - they got such a kick out of it...but I digress.

Entrance to the Arizona History Museum, Tucson

I had a great time at the Regional Study Group meeting in Tucson, Arizona last weekend.

A blog post can't do justice to the event but I'd like to share our agenda and some photos.

This quilt exhibit runs all year; through December 2012, so I hope this gives some of you a chance to see it. The show consists of the first 100 quilts submitted after the call was made. The faith and confidence of its organizers, Lenna DeMarco and Anne Hodgkins, were rewarded with a show of wonderful diversity and took pressure off  any panel of experts or judges. Laraine Daly Jones and the staff of the museum designed and hung the show and obviously they know what they are doing!
 Expressions of the makers love of Arizona, from elementary school students to quilt artists, made for a most inspiring show.The Southwest theme in landscapes and motifs was prominent. The placards were large and easy to read and the stories added so much to the viewing of each piece.

I love this one - and the story accompanying it. The star was pieced by the makers mother in the late 1930's. Discovered and rescued fifty years later, Carol was inspired to finish it with a wonderful contemporary fabric for a truly stunning two generation quilt.

"Arizona Colors" by Carol Miller
71" X 75"

"Cowgirl Boots Celebrate Arizona"
by Georgia Heller
33" x 55"

Symbols on these boots represent the various cactus, turquoise gemstone mined in Arizona, native animals, flowers, forests and the colors of the layers of earth and point out the importance of cowgirls!

"A Cowboy's Prayer" by Nancy Arseneault
67" x 36"
Cowboys and ranching are an important component of Arizona history from the earliest days up to the present time.

Inspired by the children's book Cowboy Charlie, by Jeanette Winter, Nancy got permission to use the cover image of the book for her impressive quilt.

A self-described fiber artist, Genevieve is inspired by the Sonoran Desert and expresses her love of nature with re-purposed fabrics.

"Agave Azul" by Genevieve Guadalupe
49" x 40"

The detail in the pictorial quilt below is amazing. Sandy expresses her love of the Sabino Canyon Creek which tumbles 6,000 feet from Mt. Lemmon to nourish a wide diversity of plants and animals.

Abundance - Sabino Canyon by Sandy Lambert
47" x 48

This exhibit was only one part of the two day experience and there are ninety-five MORE quilts to see!!!...You can order the book and accompanying DVD here - you get a discount when you buy both.

Our study agenda included:
Julie Silber with an educational and entertaining historical overview of Quilts in Women's Lives through a slide show presentation.
Helen Young Frost sharing details about the documentation of Arizona quilts with stories from the resulting book, Grand Endeavors. She had some quilts from the book for us to see in person and several others from the book were also brought in for show and tell. That was a real treat.

Janet Carruth has been studying the life and quilts of Emma Andres of Prescott, Arizona. We were fortunate that she was able to share several of Emma's actual quilts for us to see in person. I've seen pictures but as you know, seeing the actual textile is a whole different thing. You may be familiar with her quilt 'Out Where the West was Won".  (also seen in Grand Endeavors.)

Carolyn O'Bagy Davis has been working with Hopi quiltmakers on the various mesas in Arizona. She gave a very interesting talk showing many examples and even having a supply for sale....and then generously presented each attendee with a free copy of her new book!

The always popular "Show and Tell" portion of the event wrapped up a wonderful two days. Attendees brought lots of treasures to show and a special portion of the time was devoted to about a dozen quilts from local collectors deemed to be (or dated in a few cases) from the first two decades of the compliment the theme of Arizona's Centennial.
This was the 3rd Regional meeting the Arizona Quilt Study Group has hosted and plans are already underway for the 2013. If you are interested in joining the group please email me privately. No cost. No obligation. It will just allow you to get posts about meetings and other events.

Now....freshly inspired....back to work on my own projects!


  1. Thanks for sharing! Looks like a wonderful event. I think these regional activities are so important to quilt study.

  2. I am grateful to those who take the time and effort to study and document the work of regional quilters. Some beautiful "Arizona" quilts. Thanks for posting them!

  3. Jean, thanks so much for the wonderful recap of the regional day and for the extra publicity for the AZ Centennial Quilt exhibition. I must correct one thing. I was not the sole organizer of this event. Anne Hodgkins and I were co-chairs of the Centennial Celebration Quilt Exhibition for the AZ Centennial Quilt Project. It was our concept and we designed and initiated the mechanisms for securing the quilts and for the exhibition itself. It was Laraine Daly Jones and the staff of the AZ Historical museum that designed and hung the manificent exhbition. They did a fabulous job. I hope all of you will be able to come to Tucson. This only happens once every 100 years!!

  4. Ok, I;m screwing up here. I hit the wrong ID button. Annonymous is me - Lenna DeMarco. Duh!

  5. Thanks, Lenna for your clarification...I have edited the post so future readers will have it right.

  6. There is a catalog of the exhibit available from the AZ Historical Society Museum in Tucson showing all the quilts and comments of the makers. Editors are Carolyn O'Bagy Davis and Helen Young Frost. There also is a DVD - a must to have both!

  7. Thank you Sedona quilter - I have both items and meant to include that info on the blog. I have now added a link so ordering is easy. The book is beautiful with large photos and the full story of each quilt. I keep thinking I have all the books I need but....they keep coming .

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  10. Thank you for sharing with us your creation I had fun with it.You made a fantastic job.

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