Friday, April 22, 2016

Southwest China Quilts at Michigan State University

Phoenix appliqué detail. Some of the fabrics were twill, others looked like handkerchiefs

My weekly quilt group went on a field trip to the Michigan State Museum in East Lansing to see Quilts of Southwest China on the last day of the exhibit.
In southwest China traditional bed coverings are made of small pieces of appliquéd fabric. MSU and the Yunnan Nationalities Museum in Kuning documented this folk tradition. 
 The traditional motifs include fish, scorpion, birds, crabs and other animals.
Fish appliqué detail




Piece work in a potholder style construction, individually constructed blocks sewn together
 
Several quilts included appliqué outlined in embroidery.



A traditional Chinese bed with bed coverings

Paper pattern templates on the right
 
Some of the bed coverings had large additional borders to hang over the side of modern beds. The flanges are limp as these bed coverings had no batting. The appliqué made the centers stiffer.

The exhibit will travel nationally after its debut at the MSU Museum.  Hear curator Dr. Marsha McDowell talk about the exhibit:
http://wkar.org/post/msu-s-china-experience-also-covers-art-quilts#stream/0