Feature Articles
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September Issue 2010

Richland County Public Library in Columbia, SC, Features Quilt Exhibit

The Richland County Public Library in Columbia, SC, will present the exhibit, Quilters of Gee's Bend, featuring more than 20 of the original, colorful quilts by these Alabama quilters, on view from Sept. 30 through Nov. 14, 2010.

The quilters of Gee's Bend is a group of more than 70 African-American women from a small, rural community in Alabama that is enriched with history and generations of quilters. Their compelling stories, combined with their distinctive and original works of art, offer a fascinating look into their lives and this unique quilting tradition. Their skills were passed down through at least six generations to the present.

The quilts are made from everyday fabric: denim, cotton sheets and well-worn clothing. Most of the quilts are known as piece, strip or patchwork, yet their vibrant color schemes and abstract compositions are not associated with traditional quiltmaking but more like modern art. In the past, the quilts were assembled from discarded fabric and created as blankets, but today are recognized internationally. Numerous media outlets have shared the stories of these quilts, including National Public Radio's Talk of the Nation, Art in America, CBS News Sunday Morning, the Martha Stewart Living television show, House and Garden, Oprah's O magazine, and Country Home magazine.

Support from AT&T, the Friends of RCPL and the RCPL Foundation has made it possible for the quilters and their art to be shared with the people throughout the Midlands and South Carolina. Other sponsors include Columbia Chapter of the Links, Inc., Lee Associates, Inc., National Council of Negro Women, Inc. ­ South Carolina State Mechanism; and South Carolina Bank and Trust.

For further information check our SC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Library at 803/929-3457 or visit (www.myRCPL.com/geesbend).

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