Our travels last week took us to three states and we had a such a great time doing some fun things. I’m going to start with our last stop, the Annual Quilt and Wall Hanging Exhibition in the Great Hall of the Cultural Center in the State Capitol complex in Charleston, West Virginia. This juried and judged exhibition is held every year and is on display from Memorial Day to mid-September.
There were 43 quilts and 19 wall hangings in competition by 58 quilters accepted by the jury for competition. Entrants had to be residents of West Virginia. There is some big money in this show, with first place quilt winners receiving $750! The second place quilt winners received $400, and third place $300. The wall hanging categories received $400 for first place, $300 for second place and $200 for third place. In addition, the Best of Show received an additional $100.
The Cultural Center setting was wonderful for the exhibition as quilting has a long history in West Virginia representing one of the oldest art forms in the state.
There were so many, I cannot show you all of them. Some were too high up to capture with my little camera, even with its 8x zoom. But, I will show you close ups of a few. This one made by Carol A. Miller called Flowers Bloom won 1st Place in Applique. The work was beautiful and detailed. I didn’t get a close up of the special ribbon, so I don’t know what other award she won.
These two caught my eye. The one on the left is Elemental by Joyce Davis. On the right, Elephant Abstractions by Kathryn Eagle. Both showed intricate piecework, visible even though they were high up on the wall.
Best of Show winner was an extraordinary combination of embroidery and custom quilting made by Linda Dotson Vaughan called Love to Embroider in the Mixed/Other Quilt category.
Here is a closeup of the corner showing the fabulous custom quilting and lovely embroidery. I’m looking at all the hand work and thinking this quilt must have taken years to complete.
Several wall hangings hung together kept me rooted in one place for quite a while. Note that in this show, the first place ribbon is blue, second place is gold, and third is red. All are amazing works of art, with different techniques.
This one is called Patriot, made by Amy Pabst, and won first place in the Wall Hanging category. Just look at the tiny log cabin blocks! Note that she used striped fabric to give the illusion of even tinier pieces. Still, these blocks were only about 3 inches across, with fussy cut stars in the centers of the blue blocks.
Second place was Jacobean Delight by Claudia Covey. The combination of piecing, embroidery and custom quilting was stunningly beautiful.
This untitled Christmas theme wall hanging made by Lovenia Casto won a well deserved third place ribbon, with marvelous applique work.
This quilt is entirely done with thread on a wholecloth background fabric. Diana L. Beverage quilted this art piece called Sunshine Mandala.
Here is a close up of her extraordinary thread work, with all the color in the design coming from thread.
For this photo, I didn’t get the placards. I tried to zoom in on the photo to try to decipher the blurry cards, and I think from the show listing that the bird on the upper right is Raven Rock by Fran Kordek, the fruit and vegetable quilt is Yum Yum Basket by Frances Fischer Braden. The adorable puppy could be Annie by Pat Habenshuss. I hope I got those right.
“Oh My Gosh” is the name of this second place winning quilt by Kimberly Roberts, and so aptly named as that was my reaction to seeing the amazing piecework. There must be thousands of pieces!
These were high on the wall over a photography exhibit.
Nancy Swisher won First Place and a National Association of Certified Quilt Judges Award of Merit for her pieced Dinner Plate Dahlia quilt.
This floor also held a display of first ladies gowns from inauguration balls with exquisite beadwork. There were dolls representing every first lady going back to 1864 in their gowns. The dolls were about 18 inches high and very detailed.
One last look at just a few more.
The Cultural Center has an amazing walk through history on the lower floor, and we did not leave enough time to see it all. It begins with the prehistoric paleolithic period when native peoples occupied West Virginia for 7000 years, virtually unchanged. It takes the viewer through the ages, and then the centuries, coming down to decades for the last 100 years. Major advancements and industries, cultural and artistic endeavors, early settlements, wars, social upheavals, and so much more could be seen with history to read and absorb. Exhibits of colonial life were numerous going through many aspects of life including a general store along with home exhibits on sewing, quilting, laundry and cooking. Pictures were not great as the lighting was dim in some areas and in others the spotlights on glass made it difficult to shoot. We needed at least 3 hours, and had to blow through it in just over one. We had to get on the road in order to get home before dark or we would have spent much more time there. If you go, plan to have at least 4 hours to see the quilts and the rest of the museums exhibits.
Have you been to a quilt show lately?