Martha Sielman is not only the amazing leader of SAQA, but she is also the editor of many amazing art quilt books. You can find a complete list here.This past winter, Martha’s latest book Art Quilts International—Abstract & Geometric was released by Schiffer Publishing LTD. It is a beefy book with loads of eye candy.
The book features 300 art quilts capturing the range of abstract work that is being made today. According to Sielman, she “looked for a variety of approaches to abstract and geometric work. The imagery in this book varies from completely non-representational explorations of color and form, to abstracted realistic imagery, to the ultimate in abstraction—words: symbols that stand for concepts and emotions.”
I must admit I had never thought of words as being abstractions, but they certainly are. Sielman says, “Written words are probably the ultimate abstraction: we use a system of symbols (letters) to represent sound and form words, which represent complex concepts and ideas.” Now that is something I can spend my weekend thinking about.
No Exit 35” x 35”by Sara Impey
The full of array of media being used in abstract art quilts is also explored. From traditional materials such as thread and quilter’s cotton to usual resists, paper, and beyond.
Quilt Drawing #9 53’’ x 25’’ by Daphne Taylor
In addition to the 300 pieces of artwork in the book, there are 29 in-depth artist interviews. The interviews are an exploration of each artist’s inspirations, working methods, and challenges.
Disruption 55’’ x 98’’ by Deidre Adams
Sielman reviewed 1,300 quilts from 461 artists to curate her book.
Entrophy 86’’ x 71 by Kathleen Loomis
In the end, she selected 124 artists from 18 countries.
Geometric 45’’ x 34’’ by Fumiko Nakayam
Two of those artist live in Anchorage, Alaska. Diane Melms and me.
Fresh Salsa 25’’ 25’’ by Diane Melms
Sielman selected Dance Party at Tamara’s House. It is one of my favorite pieces and I am very honored to say that it is a part of this book.
If you purchase the book on the SAQA website, you will get 5 art quilt notecards and 45% of your purchase price benefits SAQA aka the Studio Art Quilt Association. Here is a collection of close-ups of Dance Party–click on the images to get a closer look at the thread work.
If you aren’t a member of SAQA you should seriously think about joining. It is an organization that celebrates the quilt and its makers through advocacy, exhibitions, education, and community.