Monday, September 10, 2018

The Mark Dunn Encounter

As promised, I'm back to share a little about my road trip with my mom to the International Quilt Study Center and Museum in Lincoln, Nebraska last week. When I saw that Moda Fabrics owner Mark Dunn was going to speak at the opening of  "The Mark Dunn Collection" exhibit, I told the hubby that's what I wanted to do for my birthday. He was happy for me to go as his birthday present to me (because he didn't have to shop for anything, I'm sure) but thought it would be a better mother-daughter trip. So off I went with my mom in tow for a three-day road trip!

The Mark Dunn Collection At The Internation Quilt Study Center & Museum Visited By Thistle Thicket Studio.
The opening of the show was in conjunction with the museum's monthly First Friday event. We had an hour and a half to view the exhibits before Mr. Dunn's presentation, so we headed to the main gallery floor where there was not one, but four shows on display - Color and Contour: Provencal Quilts and Domestic Objects, Marti Michell and the Business of Quilts, War and Pieced, and The Mark Dunn Collection. Today I'm just going to share about Mr. Dunn's exhibit - but stay tuned, I'll share more on the others later this week.

"Shoe Envy" by Deborah Langsam on Thistle Thicket Studio.
I would divide the collection that Mr. Dunn chose to show into three categories: historical antique quilts, reproduction quilts from Moda's Collection for a Cause fabrics, and modern art quilts. My favorites were the three modern art quilts on display. Two were whole cloth quilts made up of thousands of tiny 1/2" (maybe smaller) photos digitally printed on a cotton fabric. Both were made by Deborah Langsam of Charlotte, North Carolina. The above quilt, titled "Shoe Envy", depicted a pair of bare feet which was made up of photos of pairs of shoes.

"Any Woman, Every Woman" by Deborah Langsam on Thistle Thicket Studio.
Close-up of "Any Woman, Every Woman" by Deborah Langsam on Thistle Thicket Studio.
But it was her quilt, "Any Woman, Every Woman" that really grabbed your attention. It was comprised of thousands of tiny black and white photos of woman of domestic violence that created a mosaic portrait of a woman whose haunting eyes seemed to follow you as you moved around the room.

"Nature in New Zealand" by Noriko Endo of Japan on Thistle Thicket Studio.
Close-up of "Nature in New Zealand" by Noriko Endo of Japan on Thistle Thicket Studio.
Noriko Endo created this landscape quilt, "Nature in New Zealand", with tiny scraps of fabric placed to create the image and then covered with tulle and quilted to hold the scraps in place.

Antique Ohio Star quilt (left) that inspired the Moda Collection for a Cause reproduction "Charity" (right) on Thistle Thicket Studio.
I enjoyed seeing a few of the antique quilts Moda has used for their inspiration for their Collection for a Cause fabric lines, such as this cheddar-colored, hand-pieced and hand-quilted Ohio Star quilt. The original, on the left, was made circa 1870-1890 by an unidentified maker who inscribed the intials "I.M.L." on the back. On the right is Moda's machine-pieced and machine-quilted reproduction quilt, "Charity", made in 2014. The revenue from the sales of the fabric collection were donated to the Alzheimer's Association.

1880-1900 period antique fan quilt on Thistle Thicket Studio.
The remaining quilts in Mr. Dunn's show were antique quilts. My favorite was this hand-pieced, embroidered and tied fan quilt from 1880-1900. I love the modern feel of this antique quilt and I love the ruffle on it.

Moda Fabrics owner Mark Dunn speaking at the opening of his quilt exhibit "The Mark Dunn Collection" at the International Quilt Museum attended by Thistle Thicket Studio.
After we had viewed the four exhibits, we claimed our seats on the front row to hear Mr. Dunn's presentation. He talked about his history in the textile industry, how fabric is produced, his colorful wardrobe, and about his interest in quilts and why he collects them. Afterwards, mom and I had the opportunity to visit with him about his exhibit, my interest in textile design and building my portfolio. He told me that my "Molecules of Moda: Bella Solids" quilt hangs in his home. What an honor!!!

It was an awesome day (we also went fabric shopping and antiquing!) and I'll be sharing more in the coming week. Until then....