Saturday, March 2, 2013

American Indian Quilts

The Heard Museum Indian Fair and Market, is an annual event here in Phoenix. It features over 700 top American Indian artists selling their handmade jewelry, beadwork, sculptures, paintings, pottery, weaving, baskets, and even....quilts! It is a juried show and all items are for sale. Each winner is awarded two ribbons so that if the piece sells, the buyer and maker each have a ribbon.
This is Carla Hemlock with her award winning quilt, "Round Dance".  It represents the top of a drum and as her label states relates to nature and the 'heartbeat' of the earth. Symbolism and story is an important part of much Native art.

She took first place for "The Treaty of Canandaigua, November 11, 1794".  Click here for more on this early treaty between George Washington and the Iroquois.

Some beads represent the wampum used as currency

  Extensive beadwork, satins and cottons

According to Carla, at the signing of the treaty only X's were used. When asked their names they were spoken orally and the scribe did the best he could to phonetically record them.

Shared with the permission of Carla Hemlock, Master Quilter. Her beaded quilt, "Tribute to the Mohawk Ironworkers" has been purchased by the National Museum of the American Indian Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC.

It was a perfect day to meander through the artist booths.  Music and dance performances enhance the outdoor event as does the wide variety of Native foods tempting you along the way (my favorite is fry bread!) all under sunny skies and 85 degrees.

Admission includes access to the famous Heard Museum and its 12 galleries.
I'll share two textile related galleries in my next post. 
If you happen to be in the area don't miss it - and keep it in mind for future's held annually in March.

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