Joen Wolfrom’s Color Play: A Small Selection of Quilts from the 2011 IQA Exhibition in HoustonJoen Wolfrom | November 20, 2011
Having been away for much of the last few weeks, behind in everything, and with an exhausted mind and body, I decided my brain is not worthy of thinking clear thoughts this week. This is a perfect time to share a few photos that I took at the Houston IQA show. I wasn’t able to take pictures of all of the quilts that I thought were so impressive, but I did take sevral handfuls. Today I have selected eight to show you. They are not in any particular order. I visited the show during Quilt Market. At that time, no awards had been awarded, so I have not information on any of these quilts being award-winners. However, as far as I am concerned, these are all award-winning quilts as they are a visual feast for our eyes.
First a few photo comments: These pictures are very informal and taken with my little point ‘n shoot Nikon camera. You will see signs, pipes, barrier ribbons, and other items in some pictures. I apologize, as there was no choice in the matter. If I wanted the picture of the quilt, sometimes extras went along with it. Also, some quilts were impossible to view straight on, so they are skewed a bit. My apologies. No doubt, the actual quilts will be more beautiful in real life than what you see here in my snapshots, but I think you’d like seeing these quilts regardless of the quality of photo. The colors shown may not be true to the quilt, but I think the quilts still look great. Enjoy!
Again, in no particular order, here are eight exquisite quilts:
This triptych by Karon Huggler of Columbia, Missouri is stunning. The color use is dramatic. The curves set an elegant, sophisticated mood. Karon used both hand and machine piecing, applique, and quilting. She included three-dimensional feathering on the cranes. Karon’s original design was inspired by Louisa Smith’s work. At the time of the exhibition, this piece was available for purchase.
Peaceful Sunset at Nara
As the sun sets above Nara, the ancient capital city of Japan, the birds are silhouetted in the vibrant sky. as they return home to their night nesting spots. This beautiful scene is an original design created by Michiyo Yamamoto from Chicago, Illinois. The analogous coloring is a strong element in this quilt’s beauty. Peaceful Sunset at Nara is hand pieced, embroidered, and hand quilted using silks dyed by Michiyo.
The Lily Bloomed
The Lily Bloomed by Takido Fusako of Japan is one of those works of art that is stunning in its understated beauty. The subtle play with value, the delicate coloring, the use of subtle tones all come together to make this breathtaking in its quietness. This is a quilt that proves that you do not need to fill your design with bold colors to make a dramatic visual statement. Delicate toned hues provide this quilt’s elegance. This quilt was hand pieced, hand appliqued, and hand embroidered. It also includes trapunto.
Daphne Grieg’s striking quilt Looking West was inspired by a view from Vancouver Island looking west into the sunlit evening. This quilt is created using machine piecing, fused applique, painting, bobbin quilting, thread painting, and decorative stitching. Daphne used Gloria Loughman’s technique for her scene. This quilt uses tones and a wide value range to create its visual impact. Daphne lives in North Saanich, British Columbia, Canada.
Using a photo of a peony from her garden, Barbara Persing created an original peony design using ink on cotton fabric. Additionally, Barbara is a masterful machine quilter, quilted this artwork with cotton thread. This is an amazing work of art. This artwork is stunning in its fragility. The textural effect is unbelievable. Barbara lives in Frederick, Pennsylvania.
Thelma McGough’s High Rise was inspired by the beautiful contemporary lines in a block of high-rise buildings. Wilma took a photo image of a high-rise’s balconies. She then rotated, repeated, and recolored this imagery. This digitally-altered design was painted on satin and then quilted with invisible polyester thread. This scintillating artwork reverberates with energy, visually echoing line and color with beautiful repetition. The wide value range of colors emphasizes the design beautifully. Thelma lives in St. Mary’s Bay, Auckland, New Zealand
The visual impact of Cypress Sentinels is powerful. This image takes your breath away. Notice brilliant coloring is not present in this design. Instead, its strong visual impact is created through the elements of line, direction, and texture. Although most of the colors revolve around the middle-value range, the light and dark values really help punctuate this design’s strength. This design was created by Mary Ann Hildebrand from Comfort, Texas. She took photos of several cypress trees and made her own original design.
Cherie Gooler’s Galactic Daiquiri is bright, energetic and filled with dynamic color. The warmth of the colors adds to its liveliness. The use of value creates beautiful visual impact. This design was inspired by circles and the traditional design Drunkard’s Path. Cherie is from Santa Rosa, California.
I hope you enjoyed seeing these beautiful quilts. Look at each one closely analyze the color choices and notice how the artist used her selected colors. There should be at least one quilt that you will really be drawn to and perhaps one that is not your cup of tea. Try to figure out why each of these is so. Jot down anything of significance you learn about yourself from looking at this quilts. See you next week.
Text and photography copyright © Joen Wolfrom
The copyright of the quilts shown in this post remains with those artists who created these works of art.
Joen is a color enthusiast who teaches and lectures on color. She has written three color books: Color Play, Visual Coloring, and The Magical Effects of Color. Her Studio Color Wheel is used to illustrate color concepts in many of these blog posts. She is also the designer of the 3-in-1 Color Tool. Her new book Adventures in Designis now available. Joen’s newest design tool, the Magic Design-Ratio Tool has just been released. All books and products are published by C & T Publishing.