Another part of the recent Gramado experience was the exhibition of finalists in the festival’s annual international quilt competition. Of course Brasilians enter, but it also attracts entries from other latin American countries in the region around Rio Grande do Sul. Categories and conditions for this year’s show were listed on the website, http://www.festivalquiltpatchwork.com.br/concurso-de-quilts-2019/ Just note that here my computer automatically swung into translation mode using Google Translate, and as often happens, one or two results presented some humour. For example, as translated, the rules mention ‘best killed to the machine‘ and ‘best killed to the hand’ – which was the best GT could do with ‘quilted by machine’ and ‘quilted by hand’ in that context. GT’s amazingly helpful, but sometimes results are surprising, a little bizarre, requiring a moment’s thought. I can assure you no quilters or festival organisers were killed in the execution of this contest.
Before the doors opened to let the crowds into the event centre that afternoon, I took the opportunity to photograph those quilts which I felt were outstanding, only some of which received awards; but then I am not a judge, and am not a big winner of awards, either 🙂 Enjoy!
One that caught my eye early is Roads Interrupted by Maria Cristina Maluf Gardolinski of Brasil. If you know my own work you’ll realise I strongly relate to this landscape; and had the pleasure of having Christina in my advanced class a few days later.
A new take on a traditional favourite is Modern Double Wedding Ring by Mariso Rego of Argentina. I don’t know if this is an original design or not, as I think I’ve seen i or something very like it before – a Modern Quilt pattern, perhaps? But either way I love the way segments are missing from what is one of my favourite traditional designs, and that where showing, the centres of the motifs are very improvisational, reminiscent of the piecing styles that began to appear in the early 90s and have become contemporary, art quilt tradition.
Here is a cheerful bright scrap quilt of house blocks, Casitas, also by Marisa Rego. The choice and arrangement of clear bright colours is excellent, and if you look carefully you’ll find a little neutral grey here and there among them which, with the cream background gives the eye a resting point now and then. This same design in soft greys, beiges and creams would also be very elegant. I might have to start saving …
This next one I just loved. The Brasilian Club of Patchwork and Quilting from Sao Paulo exhibited a collection of nature themed wall quilts, including gardens, forests and groups of wild birds and animals in natural habitats. This lovely one of hexagons with added petals and centres has a beautiful floral garden texture. The added petals are sort of generic such as children might draw, and the petal colours themselves suggest popular cultivated flowers, as these are the colours of stocks, lupins or geraniums. The hexagon bases behind the flower petals are floral and garden prints, adding to that ‘flower bed’ feeling. The edge of the quilt itself is unbound, and I was dying to turn it over and see what the back was like, but refrained. I spent quite a bit of time with this effective quilt, re-visiting briefly as I walked to the elevator up to the classrooms each day. (It was hung on a purple screen, showing in the lower RHS)
I love this next one, featuring the figure of a fisherman casting a net over what is a sea of blocks in water colours, and the whole design was enhanced by watery wavy machine quilting pattern. Is this a collection of friendship fabrics? Maybe … but other interpretations could be made if we knew more about it. Regardless, it’s lovely.
Kaleidoscope by Angela Ines Moller is impressive in its complexity. In highly detailed patchwork, compiled of fussy cut pieces of fabric built into approx 2inch or 4-5cm hexagons in rich colours, set against black. The black background is quilted in a pattern that echoes the hexagon panels.
One of several lovely machine quilted whole cloth wall quilts in the show, this one stood out to me for composition and variety of filling patterns. Additionally, the effect of the quilting was enhanced by using a top thread of either a very pale grey or a pale blue, which by comparison with others nearby lent greater depth to the texture. There was little if any buckling, or rippling of the surface, demonstrating the balance of quilting intensity across the whole quilt. Fantastic.
Well done everyone whose quilts I’ve shown, and if I’ve made any errors with names or other detail please don’t hesitate to let me know. There’s one quilt I adored, very large and beautifully made…. BUT I blurred the photo of the name card so badly I just can’t pick the maker’s name out – if you know this quilter, please let me know?