Thursday, 8 March 2012


This week I heard that of the two quilts I had entered for State of the Art quilt 12, one was selected (The Final Round). Hurray! I have been asked not to show that one here until the exhibition opens, on April 14 at Gallery 159 in The Gap, Brisbane. So here is the one that was not selected: Synchronicity.

I made this quilt in August 2011 (and showed a sneak peek here) and will confess now that I have tried to enter it in four (yes, 4) art quilt shows and it has been rejected every time! This time I was really surprised because of the two quilts I entered I was quite sure the other one would be rejected!

Luckily this time I finally got a juror's comment to shed some light on this issue. The juror for SotAq12 was Sharyn Hall and she wrote this about my quilts:

Synchronicity: An effective abstract work – though on initial viewing, I found it difficult to interpret the subject matter, the text was a necessity (for me anyway).
Comments: I feel the subject matter has been over stylised, though there is good dimension created with the 2 divers, but a strong singular focal point is missing. You are creating a good effect in stylising subject matter in your quilts – a different treatment of the background without detracting from these (stylised figures) might help to create more depth – in The Final Round, the use 5 figures of different shapes and size has created movement and dimension with the work, hence it’s selection.

(The text - the artist's statement - said something about the quilt being inspired by the sport of synchronised diving and trying to capture the gracious forms and movement of the divers in my quilt - I always forget to copy and save my Artist's Statement somewhere!)

So - my quilt is abstract and too stylised! I'm surprised, as I don't consider my Sports Quilts to be abstract. I use the silhouetted forms and try to let the quilting lines emphasize these forms. (see more Sports Quilts in my Gallery here) I do admit this quilt is more stylised than the other ones and personally I like this development in my work, but it seems to be an unsuccesfull one... Would love to hear your opinion!

In the meantime I have put this quilt up for sale in my Etsy shop - you can find it here. I really like it myself; it has been hanging in our living room since it was finished (and a number of visitors has said they liked it - maybe they were just being polite, haha!), but I am not emotionally attached to it the way I am to some of my other sports quilts (notably MAGnificence and Cycle of Life). And I as I have said before, I do not have room to hang all my quilts...

Speaking about my sports quilts, I have written a 'how-to' article about them which will be in the next issue (no. 8) of Down Under Textiles, so stay tuned for that!

Also very exciting: Cycle of Life will travel with Ali George to Philadelphia, USA, and together with some of the other SotAq11 quilts be shown at the SAQA/SDA Conference at the end of this month! Lucky quilt - wish I could come too!


Kate said...

Linda - thanks for sharing those comments. I only got a very general statement from Sharyn relating to her overall experience of jurying and the quilts that were sent in. I am grateful for those comments, they are insightful, but are not specific to my quilt. Personally, I "got" the link between your image and the title.

Anonymous said...

I do not think they are over stylized. I immediately recognized the images as divers. What can you do. Last year I entered a small still life of a group of Italian vegetables. one of the veggies was Fennel. The judge did not know what it was and guessed it might be a a pair of lamb chops!

janice pd said...

Linda, I followed the link from the SAQA group to see this. I have to agree with the juror about lacking a focal point. I wonder if you had the diving boards engage the edge if it would lead the eye into the quilt more readily. I am not a fan of images floating in the center of a work. It appears as if it is lacking a border to frame the divers. A third figure [always think in odd numbers in design] whose hands perhaps went off the opposite edge of the quilt would add more interest. Of course this is all my opinion.

Jantine said...

Mmmmm, ik kan er niet zoveel over zeggen. Als ik naar de quilt kijk vind ik de figuurtjes wat verdrinken in de achtergrond qua grootte. Misschien dat de vorige persoon wel gelijk heeft met het nodig hebben van een rand of de duikplank vanaf de zijkant.
In ieder geval fijn dat je weet waarom hij niet is geaccepteerd.

MulticoloredPieces said...

Hi, Linda. This is an interesting discussion. I got the idea about the divers, however, I do think that the juror and Janice are right. Yet, it seems to me that jurors' comments are only a small part of the process. What counts is to create more, knowing that some pieces will work and some may not. You learn from every piece and each one takes you to the next step. If I were you, I'd cut out 10 silhouettes of divers and play with them. How many arrangements can you come up with? Quantity takes the fear out of creating. I get excited just thinking about the possibilities!
best, nadia