The Artistry Of Rural Alabama Meets The Art World

Sep 26, 2014

Warren Wilson College and The Center for Craft, Creativity and Design in Asheville present Gee's Bend From Quilts to Prints.
Credit warren-wilson.edu

    

In 2002, the art world was rocked to its foundation by a group of unusual, abstract quilts made by African American women from Gee’s Bend, Alabama. 

Gee’s Bend was settled by local slaves in the 19th century. Its isolated location, which was connected to the outside world by only an unreliable ferry and an old dirt road, kept the inhabitants and their quilting traditions hidden from the rest of the world for many generations. But the insularity bred a sort of magic. Using salvage shreds of old clothing, the women of Gee’s Bend created quilts of great aesthetic richness.

...when I got there (to the Houston MFA) and I saw quilts hanging on a wall that women in our community had done, it was just amazing that people thought it was art…  - Louisiana Bendolph

Now, some of the artists of Gee’s Bend are finding new ways to share their intuitive artistic craftsmanship with audiences through printmaking. 

…looking at the colors underneath each other, made me think about what lies underneath us as people… - Loretta Bennett

Host Frank Stasio talks with Gee’s Bend Quilters Loretta Bennett and Louisiana Bendolph and Master Printer Pam Paulson about an exhibit showcasing their art in a new medium at Asheville’s Warren Wilson College and The Center for Craft, Creativity and Design.

The exhibit at Warren Wilson College will be showing from September 5 to December 20 and the exhibit at The Center for Craft, Creativity and Design will be showing from September 5 to January 10, 2015.

There will also be several other events that spotlight the Gee's Bend Quilts and the Artist behind them at Warren Wilson College. Click here for more information.