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sewlinzi

WHY are quilters and textile people not seen as "proper" artists?

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I applied for a grant for a project and made a great effort to describe myself as a visual artist. I had a call back telling me to reapply for a CRAFT makers' award - grr!!!

I started trying to get the message across that we are fed up with not being recognised by the art world but the panel would not have it. Everyone applying for a grant who makes textiles, ceramics, musical instruments, jewellery is a CRAFT maker and that's that! I decided to listen politely and reapply because I do stand a chance of getting a grant of up to £1000 but still!!!

It's so frustrating that a painting can sell for anything as art but a beautiful quilt is only a piece of CRAFT:mad:

So having been put in my place as a CRAFT maker I decided to set up an Etsy shop. So far there is only one quilt in it and I have no idea whether anyone will actually buy it.

But I have to fund all my trips and projects somehow since I can't charge very much to sell something that is not "proper" art even though it probably took far longer and cost more to produce...

LINZI:P


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LINZI in Scotland x

APQS Sales Rep and Educator for the UK

Linzi's website is

www.thequiltquine.com

see more pics!...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewlinzi/

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Hi Linzi,

Keep at it! It's more important how you feel about your work than how someone else defines it.

What's the name of your Etsy. com shop so we can find it and take a look?

~~ Eva H. quilt artist-craft maker...lol...for hire...mom, cook, laundress...pick up the mail and dry cleaning go-fer!!! LOL


Welcome to the garden fresh studio of Cucumber Quilting! Located just east of Prineville, not far from the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.

QUILTS FOR SALE: CucumberQuilting.etsy.com

http://community.webshots.com/user/CucumberQuilting

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Linzi,

your post made me think of a piece I saw on Bonnie Hunter's site "quiltville.com" (my second favourite site after this one!, if you haven't checked it out give it a look-see)...

Quiltville Custom Quilting

http://www.quiltville.com

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

How Many Quilts?

May 9, 2004:

After having been asked how many quilts I've made, who I'm making this one

for, or that one for or why, and how many quilts do I think I need....

I came to the following conclusion:

I am a creator, an artist, just as much as a painter is...

Does anyone ask a painter who he is painting for or why he is painting yet

another landscape? how many pictures/portraits he has painted? How many

canvases or paintings he needs?

NO!

Does a painter stop wanting to paint because he has reached some number that

symbolizes the end of his need to paint?

"okay, that's #100, I'm done now..."

I create because I am driven to create. My medium just happens to be fabric

and thread, instead of oil or acrylics on canvas..but I create for the same

reason..to express myself, to share myself, to experiment...

Even if the quilt doesn't have a purpose, a recipient, a reason.

Quilting is my voice.

I Quilt, Therefore I Am! *Ü*

Bonnie

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hope this helps your soul a little bit, even though it won't help you get your grant :(

Sandra


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APQS Liberty

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Excellent article! I have to admit that I'm not really an art quilter (like Ferret for instance) ....BUT I don't see why a snobbish distinction has to be made between artists and craftspeople at all.

This should take you to the Etsy shop (with one item for sale! - LOL)

http://thequiltquine.etsy.com

LINZI


7A774332713D834EE7DD0C4A611AD48F.png

LINZI in Scotland x

APQS Sales Rep and Educator for the UK

Linzi's website is

www.thequiltquine.com

see more pics!...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewlinzi/

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Great conversation stimulator here!!

Sculpting is an art--where you chisel something out of stone or fabricate it out of metal.

Ceramics is a craft--where you build something from raw materials.

Hmmmm...

Oils and watercolors are art...

Using fabrics as "paint" is a craft...

Jewelry-making is a craft?

Like L.C.Tiffany was a "crafter"?

Labels are just a way of categorizing people--if you are an artist, that's what you call yourself!! I am more of a crafter--not a lot of originality in my head, but every now and then I get a whopper of an idea--then I am an artist!!

Hang in there and be a conduit for change.

Art comes out of your heart and your head--be the artist that you know you are.

(Can you hear the proud music swelling in the background??!! Got a little carried away!:P)


Linda Rech

Finely Finished Quilts

Millennium on Bliss rails--hand-guided

http://www.topperquilttools.com

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I think the big stumbling block for quilters is that we do not have any critics out there to rave about our work, that is what makes it craft instead of art. Where would Damien Hurst have been without Saatchi to rave about the significance of his work? For a modest fee ;-) I would be willing to write something for you. "Her use of tradtional materials in producing her art harkens back to the simpler era of womens's work, yet the use of modern equipment belies this." Oops, that's not really obscure enough, but give me some time and I'll come up with more.

Janet Mohler

Colorado Springs

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Linzi,

I suggest if you would, write a formal letter to the people who would be providing this grant and in your letter, attach some photographs of your artwork and perhaps even other well known artists (e.g. those in Paducah museum???) and perhaps they may reconsider after they've been "educated" in this topic. Formal letters get attention. Good luck, Friend!!


"Of all the things a woman's hands have made---The quilt so lightly thrown across her bed---The quilt that keeps her loved ones warm---Is woven of her love and dreams and thread." excerpt from The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt by Carrie A. Hall
 

:rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes: 

Shana in North Pole, Alaska ---- The Farthest North APQS Sales Rep  
 Always quilting with her faithful friend, Mademoiselle Madeleine Millennium, Bliss-fully skating gracefully...and having lots of fun with IntelliQuilter

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Hi Linzi,

Have you thought of the term "Textile Artist" as opposed to using the term "Crafter" ----as a professional artist that is what I would use to define any quilt that appears to be "art".

I'm probably going to upset some quilters when as a professional artist I don't agree with quilters calling themselves "artist" instead of quilters when they are using fabric and other assorted materials as their medium. In the art world it's "mixed media" and it has a specific catagory in art shows. They are not crafters either....in quilt shows maybe textile artist would be a good term.

As a long time artist if I filled out an application to show and have juried one of my quilts for the upcoming Art in the Park show this spring 2009---I can assure you my quilt would would not be accepted into the show. Period.

I would most probably be reprimanded for even attempting it. I don't even try. I know my boundries in the art world.

I have never mixed the two mediums.

I have been quilting for approx. 10 yrs. now. And been an artist since high school when I won a national contest and went on to study art at the local college. From there I went on to show and sell my art work, teach and enter art shows. I also love graphic art and working with computers as a medium.

When I became interested in quilting I immersed myself in that craft as much as I had my art. But I call myself a Quilter, not an Artist. I distinctly separate the two. Terms and the methods.

My art is one thing---my quilting is another. I don't do "art quilts" even though I love to look at them---and when I see them at quilt shows---I don't consider them quilts so much as they are "art". They are beautiful painting that happen to be done with fabric, thread, inkd, embellishment, etc.

I view them as "Textile Art". I truly feel it is time quilt show sponsers and judges take into consideration textile artist and give them their own catagory to display their textile paintings if they are going to allow artist to enter quilt shows.

I can't speak for large art show---but, locally---and I live in a very liberal northern Calif. art community. Quilts are not allowed as entries into art shows in my area at this time. But "art quilts" are allowed into competion at quilt shows. Below is one of my large watercolors. It's somewhat abstract, and if I wanted I could do it in textiles (fabrics, threads) instead of inks on paper---if I did this exact painting in fabric and tried to enter it into a art show---it would be rejected. But if I entered it into a quilt show, it would be accepted. So many mixed signals.

I hope I haven't offended anyone....I love quilting, I love mixed media art and being an artist---but, I'm not a textile artist or even an art quilter. I'm a quilter in the sewing room. I'm an artist at my watercolor table or easel.

Best of luck with getting your grant. I hope by applying and pursuing this, you bring to the forefront the need to define art quilt entries into quilt shows.

post--1346190121651_thumb.jpg

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I too am a professional quilter. But my background is in visual arts. For many years (a long time ago) I switched from painting to collage. Boy what a time I had getting grants or even placed in a show. Then all of a sudden collage was the new form of art, unfortunately I switched to assemblage! While most of my friends were applying and getting HUGE grants from the Canadian Arts Council to "research" their ideas, I was raising two children alone and working full time and going to University part time. Back then it was considered "strange for a man to raise children alone". Most people assumed that I was a widower. Of course when I got together with my art peers, they were talking in Art Speak, (which is nothing more than practically making up words and other people pretend they know what you are saying!), while I was talking the price of Hockey equipment and piano lessons. Now that I am a professional quilter (and damn proud of it) I don't have to impress my friends because they are HONEST quilters (like the people on this forum) We share our ideas freely and give praise continuously. Try to find an artist that would do that!

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WOOHOO Alcote! You tell 'em Mister!


7CB1BF7B399CF481C4AED78FE8002A31.png

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

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I am working on 2 quilts just now and I have 3 in the closet officially identified as UFOs. This past week a really nice lady asked me why I needed another quilt. What was I going to do with it. I don't think I even gave her an answer. I mean, it is so obvious to me that this is my art. It is not what I am going to DO with the quilt; it is how the quilt makes me FEEL - both while I am making it and afterwards. I just think they don't get it. I always say it is like loving animals. Some people just don't. I just don't understand that. I hope in heaven I have a room full of fabric and a house full of animals.


Just Sew Simple Sylvia Blissett APQS Freedom '09 "Stitch" Circle Lord 2010 “"Until one has loved an animal, Part of their soul remains unawakened.”

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I think the ETSY site is really cool. Every since I think JoAnn pointed it out I look all the time.

It's a really cool site.

Good luck selling your top. It's really beautiful.

Hugs Grammie Tammie

Your an artist no matter what they say!!!!


Tammie Baggett

aka Grammie Tammie

926 Stephens Dr

Westcliffe, Colorado 81252

grammietammie2014@gmail.com

 

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I think we've got a long way to go in the UK. One of the things I am trying if the Royal Academy Summer exhibition. I would hope if we can get a few pieces in there we might have a fighting chance. I also hope that when they US gets the idea it will be exported to us, but I am not holding my breath on that.

The best bit it as what we do isn't art we can't make use of the tax rules for irregular sales that are in place to help artists :(

Ferret

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The 'landscape' may be changing....(pardon the pun.) :P

I also cross the boundaries between artist and quilter, and I hope to see the movement toward including quilts as art in shows, too. Still, some art snobs will never receive fiber arts, such as quilting and weaving, as anything more than craft. That's just they way they are. I matters not to them how classic your training may have been... you're still 'just a quilter.'

I just went to two shows this week, at each of the colleges here, and one, I would definitely call a "fiber arts" show, and the other a traditional quilt show. (I didn't take photos, due primarily to respect for artist's copyright, tho I would really have liked to show you the quilts...omg...they were FABULOUS!)

The differences were not only conceptual, but also the treatment of the medium was different. In the one instance, all the 'art quilts' were definitely fabrics, fibers and other media mixed together, heavily embellished, layered with beads, paint, dyes, found objects, handmade papers, burn outs and other items, though they were still 'quilted', they really pushed the boundaries of what we would normally think of as a 'quilt.' Even the quilting itself was not treated in what we would call a 'traditional' manner. (read: steal, I mean, borrow ideas! lol!) These were not 'warm or snuggly' and in fact, a couple of them were quite obviously painful...and the attached artist's statements reflected the fact that some of them were made to work through major life losses. One was 20' long, and was intended to give a person the feeling of how deep the water was during Hurricane Katrina. These pieces were not meant as warm coverings.

At the 'traditional quilt show', these quilts were no less explorations of color and pattern, but the maker's intent is clearly different. These were meant to be warm coverings, with a few exceptions of wall quilts, which were Christmas-ey.

The quilt patterns and fabrics were beautiful, but still were established designs... a Civil war "Dear Jane" quilt, a trip around the world, a turning twenty. There was not a lot of 'stepping outside the box' or changing the 'rules' with these quilts. I would go so far as to say that the only one that the quilting even approached somewhat unusual was my own...the quilting on this one was drawn by me, and done by me, with the wonkiness that seems to happen when one is free-hand quilting (without stitch regulator, and being a little right brained!), and all the others appeared to primarily be perfectly spaced, even stippling or pantograph. The designs were SO perfect that they either had to be computerized or panto. Oh, and there wasn't a feather in the bunch. Some leaves, some PERFECT jig-saw puzzle pieces... but nothing out of the ordinary. Oh, and even a couple of tops that weren't quilted.

I don't know what the 'powers that be' would say about an 'art quilt'... but my inclination would be to play the same game... Change the classification to Mixed Media and textile artist, as was mentioned above, Mount the item professionally in a frame and get out your thesaurus and write some big 'BS' statement about it and your explorations in color, texture and transparency, and some emotional whatever whatever, and see what happens!

One of my favorite Calvin and Hobbes cartoons was when he and Hobbes are observing the landscape covered in snow. The scene plays as follows: (from the calvin and hobbes comic-strip search engine)

Calvin shows Hobbes his latest snow sculpture. Hobbes doesn't see anything. Calvin tells Hobbes art is dead. There's nothing to say, so art has no purpose. He signs his name in the snow and offers it to Hobbes for a million dollars. Hobbes says it doesn't match his furniture. Calvin says,

"The problem with being avant-garde is knowing who's putting on who."

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Maybe the simple definition that most people have stuck in their heads is: Quilts are made for the bed and art is to hang on a wall, decorate a table and to be admired. So quilting as an art sinks into the black hole of space because many people haven't moved past the quilt belonging on a bed phase. Like mentioned above change the classification to help get your work out and hopefully change the views of people who are stuck in bed.:P


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Wow - some great discussion! My original bid had me down as textile artist but they didn't swallow that one. I think that I could arguably be termed a textile artist, quilter, craftsperson - they are all just labels. The thing is that in the UK in particular, the label of craftsperson is still asssociated with dreadful 1970's sales of work in church halls of purple nylon toilet roll dollies - OK we have come a long way but we are still only getting flea market money for our creations and galleries won't touch us!

I'm reapplying for the grant with a different pitch but we are still far, far away from the $100, 000 quilt prize. When Ferret cracks the Royal Academy, she can hire my quilted yurt (work in progress) as the souvenir shop & tea room and we'll attach a for sale sign to it!:cool:

LINZI


7A774332713D834EE7DD0C4A611AD48F.png

LINZI in Scotland x

APQS Sales Rep and Educator for the UK

Linzi's website is

www.thequiltquine.com

see more pics!...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewlinzi/

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I think too, that often success is made in small steps that eventually change how others think.

Remember 20 years ago the notion of quilting our quilts by machine was new and many disapproved thinking it was the death all of quilts. Now, look at how many quilts are done by hand, practically none. Look at the beautiful quilts done by hand-guided and computer-guided long arm machines. As well as all the beautiful art quilts that were all most non-existence 20 years ago.

I hope you achieve your goal even if it is under a different label.


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Too right Linzi, in the UK there is no respect fot craft. It is a vital element in areas such as building. Achieving competence in craft takes many hours of practise and there is no respect for the effort involved in achieving competence or excellence. Hence we have a great shortage of "trades people" such as plasterers carpenters etc. Youngsters can't be bothered to put in the time and effort required.

The same then applies to sewing, quilting etc. In Japan such people are revered and sought out to pass on their skills to the next generation, but not so in western society.

The other problem for quilting is that it is seen as womens occupation , something done on the side, maybe to earn some "pin money"and therefore not important or serious.

This is where education is so important. Our work is mostly shown in specialist shows aimed at those already familiar with the idea of quilts eg quilt shows. This is why exhibitions in other areas is so important where you will get non quilters passing through. The Hever castle exhibition is a case in point. you pay for entrance to the gardens and the quilt show is free. Many people who visit are amazed by the diversity of what is in the showand would never have visited a quilt show otherwise.

There is an article about Pat Archibald this month in Fabrications magazine about her exhibition last year in Edinburgh in a gallery attached to a theatre venue ( I think) which attracted a lot of attention from non quilters.

Keep up with the applications for funding, you'll get there in the end.


Yvette Ness

Millenium owner

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Originally posted by sewlinzi

............When Ferret cracks the Royal Academy, she can hire my quilted yurt (work in progress) as the souvenir shop & tea room and we'll attach a for sale sign to it!:cool:

LINZI

ROFLMAO!! :P


"Of all the things a woman's hands have made---The quilt so lightly thrown across her bed---The quilt that keeps her loved ones warm---Is woven of her love and dreams and thread." excerpt from The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt by Carrie A. Hall
 

:rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes: 

Shana in North Pole, Alaska ---- The Farthest North APQS Sales Rep  
 Always quilting with her faithful friend, Mademoiselle Madeleine Millennium, Bliss-fully skating gracefully...and having lots of fun with IntelliQuilter

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Some textile artists are perceived as artists. The Lubbesmeyer Twins paint with fabric, and their creations are not quilts as they do not have a back or batting. Their creations are professionally framed. Take a look at their web page and enjoy their creations. Their accomplishments are awe inspiring & inspirational.

http://www.lubbesmeyerstudio.com/

sms

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Okay, maybe I'm overly sensitive having spent 25 years in a career where a woman was considered "non-traditional", but could it have something to do with the fact that the majority of quilt artists are women?

It may be a matter of all of us becoming more vocal and claiming the space as our own. I have personally made it my mission to ask every gallery owner / manager I meet where their textile or fabric art is. When they give me whatever lame reply they can muster, I then explain to them that they could actually become a leader in the art world by recognizing the next new thing. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then art must also be defined by the viewer. I think we have a louder voice than we realize, we just need to start using it.

Now I've got that off my chest!


Julie 

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It has only been in the past decade that quilters started venturing out into the artistic side of this craft. Meaning to use fabrics, threads and inmagination to draw, paint or sculpt.

To just simply piece together and quilt a quilt top with someone eleses pattern design or quilt designs does not make you an artist...it makes you a crafter. The definition of art is the following....

Main Entry: 2art

Pronunciation: \\ˈärt\\

Function: noun

Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin art-, ars — more at arm

Date: 13th century

1: skill acquired by experience, study, or observation <the art of making friends>

2 a: a branch of learning: (1): one of the humanities (2)plural : liberal arts barchaic : learning , scholarship

3: an occupation requiring knowledge or skill <the art of organ building>

4 a: the conscious use of skill and creative imagination especially in the production of aesthetic objects ; also : works so produced b (1): fine arts (2): one of the fine arts (3): a graphic art

5 aarchaic : a skillful plan b: the quality or state of being artful

6: decorative or illustrative elements in printed matter

To simply copy someone eles ideas is not artistic or make you an artist.

To imagine then execute your original idea into a tangible sculpted, painted, pieced, or move makes you an artist. To be regonized as an artist there must be a demand for that vision/ artistic talent of the indvidual. By having their original works on exerbition (?) in some sort of Art Gallery where people can view and purchase the pieces.

To get Artistic Quilters to be taken seriously, they need to get the art galleries to regonize them and start to host exibits (?) of their work. Then the concept of quilt artist/ textile artist will trickle up to the ones that are holding the grant money. This will take time and a lot of hard work from those that want to be viewed as an artist and may take another decade for the mass majority of the world to grasp the idea of it as well.

Good luck and don't give up, anything worth being/ known as is worth fighting for. :)

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