Wall of Sound

I don’t think this has ever happened before. I finished a quilt, took it to Chris Arend, my photographer, got the images back, and then wrote a blog post all in one week.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellYeah Me.

Wall of Sound has blocks from nine other quilts in it. You can read the whole story here.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellI love how the close ups are interesting compositions in of themselves.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellIt took a long time (as in years) for me to get all of these blocks to read well together while at the same time hold their own as individual blocks.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellWall of Sound is named after the enormous public address system designed for the Grateful Dead by the audio engineer Owsley “Bear” Stanley. Here is what the original Wall of Sound looked like.

I think that if the Wall of Sound were a quilt it would like this.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellMany of you have said that I should have a show where the backsides of my quilts are exhibited. I’ve heard this enough times to realize you guys might be on to something. I did spend about 40-45 hours laying down thread on this quilt.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellSo, this time when I brought the new quilts in for photography, I had Chris photograph the backs of the quilts.

Back of Wall of Sound by Maria ShellI think I should have chosen a lighter background fabric, but I am very pleased with the photography. Here is a front photo.

Wall of Sound by Maria ShellAnd here is a back photo of the same section of the quilt. It is a reverse image.

Back Detail of Wall of Sound by Maria ShellI always use shot cottons for the backs of my quilts. A shot cotton is made of two different color threads–one for the weft and one for the warp.

Back Detail of Wall of Sound by Maria ShellThis creates a glowing color. I believe shot cottons hide mistakes better than solid fabrics, but they still really showcase the quilting.

Back Detail of Wall of Sound by Maria ShellIf I were to exhibit both sides of my quilts, I’d need to think of a catching name for the show.

Back Detail of Wall of Sound by Maria ShellBACK & FRONT



What do you think? I welcome suggestions.

Wall of Sound is the second quilt made using this grid format with nine different blocks. The first was Dance Party at Tamara’s house.

Dance Party at Tamara's HouseI’m ready to start the third. Expect a finished quilt in about two years.

Happy Friday People!

This entry was published on August 29, 2014 at 8:06 PM. It’s filed under Quilt Stories and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

21 thoughts on “Wall of Sound

  1. I love this series of quilts you are making. They are so colorful and whimsical.

  2. Jan Glines on said:

    Great series! How about “It Takes Two”.
    Keep enjoying your work and thanks for sharing.

  3. Wall of Sound Muted? Wall of sound at dawn? dusk? fogged? You will have fun with the titles as you use more colorful or lighter backing for sure to inspire them. Hope you will include the Grateful Dead sound system photos in your exhibit as they say it all. Art is reflective of the time in which it is created and these sure tell the tale. Fabulous.

  4. Wow Fantastic! I didn’t realise there was such detailed quilting on your quilts, not being able to see them in person, so to speak! They are amazing. The shot cotton make sa fantastic backing too.

  5. Amazing quilt, amazing back, thank you for sharing.

  6. I LOVE this – it is amazing and the back stands out as its own piece! What kind of thread do you use & do you just use one line – as some of the designs stand out so so bright! The peppered cotton is an amazing tip (I am currently being defeated by a quilt that has a solid back!)

    • Rachael- I use Aurifil 28wt. for most of my work. I do usually go around the outer edge of each twice. I know that makes for a lot of quilting, but I love how it looks. Thank you for stopping by.

  7. Your last quilt reminded me of Homage to a Square where colors change depending on what color they are adjacent to. The complimentary colors pop each other and some are more dominant than others depending on the proportions of the compliment. You have quite a study there. Love your energies and stick-to-

  8. “Flip Side” put me in mind of records, which is thematically linked with “Wall of Sound”. I just found your work through Malka Dubrawsky, and I’m glad I did. Have fun as artist in residence!

    • I like Flip Side too. So many of my quilts reference music. I like to think of them as having visual rhythm. What music might look like. Thank you Nicole for stopping by and commenting.

  9. I knew you were a Deadhead as soon as I heard the title. I love this piece, its very inspiring.

    • Well, the real Deadhead in our house is my husband. He likes to name my quilts and sometimes, if it makes, I let him. Wall of Sound I think is great title that I think works with piece. Thank you for stopping by.

  10. gorgeous. so love this quilt. and you’re probably way beyond this, but I immediately think of “I’ve looked at quilts from both sides now” sung to the tune of Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell. Hey, I like Both Sides Now.

  11. Pingback: Creative Block? - Pixeladies | Pixeladies

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