What a treat I had this weekend! Three of the Gee's Bend Quilters, Lucy Mingo, China and Mary Ann Pettway, displayed a few of their quilts at the Tarble Arts Center at Eastern Illinois University and gave a presentation on their history with quilts and life. Their quilts started as utilitarian pieces created from materials at hand but they have risen to be honored as pieces of art.
As you can read in the article from the Oct. 15, 2012 Journal Gazette/Times-Courier, the quilters of Gee's Bend lived in an isolated area on a river and the main town was a ferry ride to the other side. Their families worked the land as cotton pickers. They were poor in material things but rich in family and friendships. The making and quilting of a quilt brought them together to share the joys of their lives.
And the sorrows. These quilters were also part of the civil rights movement. In their quest for equality they faced hatred, bigotry, fear and ignorance as well as water cannons, tear gas, police batons, and the deliberate closing of their only ferry service. Their cherished dream of becoming registered voters kept them going through the bad times. And now, they share their memories and their faith as they share their quilts.
Short history of the Gee's Bend Quilters:
Unfortunately, there was no tatting on the quilts displayed.
Here's the latest article from the Tatting site at BellaOnline.com.
Nina Libin - Beaded Pearl Tatting BK 17
Nina Libin - Beaded Pearl Tatting (Lace of Beads #17) This study of beaded pearl tatting will offer unique ways to incorporate multiple colors of beads with at least two colors of thread in one pass.
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