recap: The Modern Quilt Showcase 2017

Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston

I was fortunate enough to check out the beautifully curated Modern Quilt Showcase, sponsored by the Modern Quilt Guild. This exhibit was part of the quilt show associated with the 2017 International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston, Texas. Members of the Modern Quilt Guild from around the world submitted their quilts for this exhibit that uses traditional quilting techniques with a modern design aesthetic.

I was able to document all 25 quilts included in the exhibit. Unfortunately, the lighting in the show isn’t the best for photography. Also, my apologies—I neglected to take detail shots of a few quilts.

If your quilt was in the show—congratulations! Please email me your Instagram link if it is not listed below and let me know if the pattern is available for purchase. I’d be happy to include in this post.

Enjoy the show!

International Quilt Market and Festival Quilt Show, 2017, Houston, Texas
Looking down on the overall quilt show. The Modern Quilt Showcase is in there somewhere!

A video walkthrough the show:

“Not Easy Being Green” by Mary Keasler. Statement: “As with most of my geometric quilts, I work in an improvisational manner. I began making small four patch blocks, not knowing where it may lead me. My decision was to surround them with various shades of green in a quarter Log Cabin block style. The blocks were pieced together in an improvisational manner, leaving plenty of negative space. I worked out my quilting design once I began the quilting process. It was not an easy quilt to complete in this manner, thus “Not Easy Being Green”. Also, being green refers to the use of fabric scraps less than two inches in size. [Design Source: Quarter Log Cabin and Four Patch blocks]
detail of “Not Easy Being Green” by Mary Keasler
“Inscrutable” by Dawn Golstab. Statement: “This quilt resulted from a class that I took, presented by Heather Grant, “Breaking the Grid”. By first creating a grid design with half-rectangle triangles, then removing blocks, changing the orientation and testing pops of color, the design grew organically. [Design Source: Half-rectangle triangles]
detail of “Inscrutable” by Dawn Golstab
“Get Woke” by Chawne Kimber. Statement: “Meant to transcend the moment at hand, this quilt is in reaction to, and encouragement of, the current social awakening in the United States. [Design Source: The style of stitching is inspired by that of Alabama Channin.]
detail of “Get Woke” by Chawne Kimber
“Inside Out” by Susan Bleiweiss. Statement: I wanted to challenge myself to work with a limited color palette, so I restricted myself to just gray, white, and black, and simple shapes.
detail of “Inside Out” by Susan Bleiweiss
“Urban Trek” by Heather Black. Statement: “This quilt calls on the sights of a walk in the city and the shapes, colors, and textures encountered on that walk. From crosswalks to stop lights and construction sites to chain link fences, all these images can be found in this quilt. [Design Source: My own Modern Stepping Stones quilt and the general cityscape]
detail of “Urban Trek” by Heather Black
“Waiting for Sanity” by Kristin Shields. Statement: “Waiting for Sanity was begun in early 2016 during a class with Gwen Marston. The colors I used are some of my favorites with a naturally patriotic theme. As it turned out, I didn’t get around to finishing the quilt until after the dreadful 2016 election when I was left with a feeling that sanity had gone out the window. The title is a direct reference to the liberated Hourglass blocks.” [Design Source: Hourglass block]
detail of “Waiting for Sanity” by Kristin Shields
“Neighbors” by Melanie Tuazon. Statement: “Neighbors is inspired by the shapes and shadows made by my house’s blinds as the light moves through the house each day. I made it during a time when there was a lot of fear in our community, so some blinds are more open than others. Some face other windows while others turn away. While I worked within the structure of the designed block, each block was pieced without precise measurements using a method that had planned and unplanned elements.” [Design Source: Window blinds]
detail of “Neighbors” by Melanie Tuazon
“Central Pivot” by Kim Eichler-Messmer. Statement: “I have always been fascinated by the landscape, both up close and from a distance. On a flight from Kansas City to Los Angeles, I was deeply inspired by the circular farm fields in the West and Southwest caused by a type of watering system called central pivot irrigation.” [Design Source: The design for this quilt was inspired by circular farm fields caused by central pivot irrigation]
detail of “Central Pivot” by Kim Eichler-Messmer
“Current Wave” by Silvia Sutters. Statement: “This design was inspired by sea currents and elevation maps. The movement of the curves gives a modern take on the traditional Drunkard’s Path block with also playing with negative space and the shapes created by the blocks.” [Design Source: Drunkard’s Path]
detail of “Current Wave” by Silvia Sutters
“Road Work” by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill. Statement: “The design of Road Work was inspired by a specific crosswalk that I am stopped at daily, not because of pedestrians but because of traffic congestion, while commuting to work. The queen size is the second in a color-study series. The first Road Work was considerably smaller and was constructed from traditional colors found in a road. Purchase the pattern here. [Design Source: crosswalk in Connecticut]
"Road Work" by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill. Pattern available at http://shop.wholecirclestudio.com/
detail of “Road Work” by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill

“State of Being” by Cheryl Brickey. Statement: “State of Being is a modern take on a traditional Ohio Star block. The design begins with one full star block in the corner of the quilt and becomes increasingly fractured as the design extends into the negative space of the quilt. Both the design and quilting represent our complex and sometimes chaotic state of being.” [Design Source: Modern take on an Ohio Star block] My apologies—I neglected to take a close up of this beautiful quilt.
“Shine a Light” by Hillary Goodwin. Statement: “Shine a Light, Be the Change, Bring the Positive… This quilt and design were a call for action to me after the depressing reality of our polarized post-election country. I decided in the quilt and in my life to concentrate less on criticizing the other side but instead to spend more time volunteering in my community, being a better neighbor, and lending my voice to those causes and people in need. We all have something positive to bring to our community regardless of political party, religion, etc. This quilt is a reminder of that goal and the powerful potential of our collective action.” [Design Source: Original]

detail of “Shine a Light” by Hillary Goodwin
“Oh Happy Day” by Yvonne Fuchs. Statement: ” Oh Happy Day is a playful exploration of traditional blocks in a very non-traditional layout. The design aims to create a feeling of transition from the upper left to the lower right with a sense of movement and dissonance along the way. The quilt offers an opportunity to practice precision piecing, and the graphic two-tone design allows for easy adaptation to indvidual tastes while offering plenty of quilting space. [Design Source: Traditional blocks]
detail of “Oh Happy Day” by Yvonne Fuchs

“LInes #1” by Debbie Grifka. Statement: “A straight line is powerful. You can cross it if you want to, but to do so requires decision and purpose. Where do you want to go if you cross the line? What is on the other side? Like the colors in this work, there is no in-between. It is cross or not, black or white. [Design Source: This quilt is a larger version of a ten-inch quilt I created as part of the 100 Day Project in 2017.] My apologies—I neglected to take a close up of this beautiful quilt.
“Madonna” by Brittany Bowen Burton and quilted by Natalia Bonner. Statement: ” Religious texts mention few women, unfortunately, but there have always been great women. We know of Mary, the Madonna, because she was mother to Jesus. Often I look beyond the walls of my home to find personal value and purpose, but as I created this quilt, I was reminded that my greatest power and influence is as a mother and in what I teach my children to become. As Mary was, I too can be a mother to greatness.” [Design Source: Inspired by the score for “Get Your Curve On” featured in The Improv Handbook For Modern Quilters by Sherri Lynn Wood]

detail of “Madonna” by Brittany Bowen Burton and quilted by Natalia Bonner
“Passage” by Carson Converse. Statement: “Grids and stripes have been a common motif in my work. There is a beauty to patterns and rhythms found in nature and agriculture. Repetition allows individual components to blend into a minimalist field, still maintaining a depth and complexity that invite you to look closer. The repetitive process of making a quilt echoes this inspiration. This process is a reminder that quiet moments can be filled with awe. [Design Source: I am interested in the way repeated lines on paper can affect values and create atmosphere.]
detail of “Passage” by Carson Converse
“Bazaar Quilt” by Tara Faughnan. Statement: “This quilt is made of folded pieces of fabric, layered and stitched in place. The design and layout were created as I went, row by row, with no idea of the final outcome. I have worked with prairie points (or Pine Burrs) before, following the same layering technique. I experimented with the intrinsic patterns created by different folding methods, and settled on this shape to create the design look I was after. [Design Source: Pine Burr block]
detail of “Bazaar Quilt” by Tara Faughnan
“Ladders” by Maria Janotkova. Statement: “I like knitted Nordic sweaters. The purity of their colors and chevron patterns are written as keywords in my mind when I think about Nordic style. Browsing traditional patchwork patterns and seeing Jacob’s Ladder reminds me of a chevron created by a series of ladders.” [Design Source: Jacob’s Ladder block]
detail of “Ladders” by Maria Janotkova
“Self Portrait Behind The Pixels” by Angela Bowman and quilted by Laura Pukstas. Statement: “This is me, an actual human being behind my outline presence. Let’s look through the pixels, see each other as beautiful humans we are, and make more of an effort to understand one another before passing judgement online. Less hate. More kindness. I foundation paper-pieced the quilt, giving myself the constraint of using only prints from my current fabric stash.” [Design Source: Self portrait and the simple art concepts of a grid, polygonal shapes, and materials constraints]
detail of “Self Portrait Behind The Pixels” by Angela Bowman and quilted by Laura Pukstas
“Harvest” by Carson Converse. Statement: “There is a beauty to patterns and rhythms found in nature and agriculture. Repetition allows individual components to blend into a minimalist field, still maintaining a depth and complexity that invite you to look closer. The repetitive process of making a quilt echoes this inspiration. This process is a reminder that quiet moments can be filled with awe. [Design Source: Corn stalk stubble left in a field after harvest]
detail of “Harvest” by Carson Converse
“Log Cabin Quilter Unknown” by Diana Vandeyar. Statement: “Museums are wonderful sources of inspiration for modern quilts. Some of my best photographs capture only the close-up details. I set out to produce a quilt which only focused on the details of a Log Cabin quilt I saw in a a Virginia museum. I changed the coloring, shifted the alignment, and changed the scale of each of the blocks to add another dimension to the quilt. The title is an homage to all those unknown quilters whose extraordinary works hang in museums all over the world.” [Design Source: Log Cabin quilt]
detail of “Log Cabin Quilter Unknown” by Diana Vandeyar
“Wax and Wane” by Susan Kyle. Statement: “Have you ever wondered, while the aethetician is waxing your eyebrows, about the white fabric used to pull off the wax? I asked one day and it turns out it’s 100% cotton muslin that comes in rolls 50 yards long and 2 1/2 inches wide. I bought two rolls, proving (although proof is hardly necessary) that quilters can find an excuse to buy fabric anywhere, any time. I designed a simple quilt with strips of muslin running its width, taking advantage of the length available on the rolls. I alternated colors increasing and decreasing, waxing and waning. [Design Source: Original]
detail of “Wax and Wane” by Susan Kyle
“ANDTHENTHISHAPPENED” by Dawn Golstab. Statement: “In 2016 at QuiltCon West, I took the EQ7 classes taught by Christa Watson. The classes were terrific and inspired me to spend more time creating original quilt designs. For the Michael Miller Luxe fabric challenge, I started playing with large scale triangle shapes using the EQ7 program… AND THEN THIS HAPPENED! To keep the design really clean and modern, I used a knife-edge facing to bind the quilt. [Design Source: Half-square triangles]
detail of “ANDTHENTHISHAPPENED” by Dawn Golstab
“Women’s Work” by Melanie Tuazon and Jeanine Bowen, Aleeda Crawley, Sara Fader, Ashley Hinton, Karin Jordan, Alyson Olander, Krishma Patel, Melissa Quaal, Michelle Reiter, Viriginia Robinson, Anne Sullivan and Kitty Wilkin. Statement: “This is Women’s Work, a group quilt that depicts a glass ceiling. The glass is cracked but not broken, the panes inspired by the Javits Center, where a victory party was planned on November 8, 2016. It represents the mourning of that loss and the obstacles that still prevent the achievement of feminist goals. This quilt represents the ambition and desire to achieve the symbolic milestone of female leadership and equality through traditionally domestic practices. [Design Source: Javits Center ceiling]
detail of “Women’s Work” byMelanie Tuazon and Jeanine Bowen, Aleeda Crawley, Sara Fader, Ashley Hinton, Karin Jordan, Alyson Olander, Krishma Patel, Melissa Quaal, Michelle Reiter, Viriginia Robinson, Anne Sullivan and Kitty Wilkin
“Ohio Snowball” by Christine Perrigo. Statement: “I started with the blown up Flowering Snow block, choosing to emphasize the small square formed between the petals. I chose the Ohio Star pattern as a secondary pattern. I decided to make the stars march across the different background segments. I very often play with overlapping patterns for my quilting designs. Once this quilt top was together, it sat for almost a year until I could brainstorm how to quilt it. [Design Source: Ohio Star and Flowering Snowball blocks]
detail of “Ohio Snowball” by Christine Perrigo

It was a well cuarated show. Here are some overview shots:
Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 1 Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 2 Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 3 Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 4 Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 5 Modern Quilt Showcase at International Quilt Market and Festival, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Photo 6

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8 Comments

    1. You’re welcome! I enjoyed doing it. While it took a bit of time to type the descriptions (hopefully no typos!), it made me really read and think about the quilts. Honestly, I took photos of all of the descriptions, but didn’t read them at the time. I get SO overwhelmed at quilt shows, so it was nice to be able to absorb it all afterwards. Also, I know how much it stinks to have a quilt in a show and not see it in person. I hope through the video and photos it feels like you’re there (or close to it)!

    2. You’re welcome! I enjoyed doing it. While it took a bit of time to type the descriptions (hopefully no typos!), it made me really read and think about the quilts. Honestly, I took photos of all of the descriptions, but didn’t read them at the time. I get SO overwhelmed at quilt shows, so it was nice to be able to absorb it all afterwards. Also, I know how much it stinks to have a quilt in a show and not see it in person. I hope through the video and photos it feels like you’re there (or close to it)!

  1. I had to force myself to walk through that exhibit: I was really not impressed. But maybe, as you say, it was the lighting. Your pictures are much more attractive than the exhibit itself and I can actually enjoy those quilts a little more.

  2. For those of us who never or rarely get to a quilt show, your work here gives us a great taste of the astounding range of gifted quilting going on in our times. What an inspiration and joy to see these works up close, and here, cozy at home!! Thank you SO MUCH!

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