International Quilt Museum Featured in ‘Craft in America’ on NET

News Release Date: 
December 12, 2019

For Immediate Release

International Quilt Museum Featured in ‘Craft in America’ on NET

LINCOLN, Neb. (Dec. 12) – "QUILTS," a new episode of PBS's "Craft in America", will prominently feature the International Quilt Museum at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln when it premieres nationwide on PBS and locally, at 8 p.m. CT, Friday, Dec. 27 on NET, Nebraska’s PBS & NPR Stations.

Michael A. Cummings at the sewing machine - "Craft in America" "Quilts"

The Peabody Award-winning documentary series, “Craft in America” discovers the beauty, significance and relevance of handmade objects and the artists who make them. For more than a decade, the series has taken viewers on cultural journeys across this nation, honoring the multiplicity of traditions that have come to define our country.

In this episode, Carolyn Ducey, curator of collections, and Leslie C. Levy, executive director, introduce the International Quilt Museum (IQM), where the mission is to build a global collection and audience that celebrate the cultural and artistic significance of quilts.

"We are thrilled to partner with 'Craft in America' to help tell the story of American quilts," Levy said. "This episode truly captures the spirit and heart of our rich quiltmaking tradition. We're also excited to share our collection, exhibitions and research with a national audience through the lens of this captivating episode."

The “Craft in America” crew was at the IQM last March to film interviews and view quilts from the collection, which are featured throughout the hour-long episode.

In this episode, viewers meet contemporary masters of this surprising and powerful art form.

Historian and storyteller Ken Burns, a passionate quilt collector, who appears in the episode, calls quilts the “simplest and most authentic expression of who we are as a people.” The IQM recently exhibited 28 quilts from Burns’ American quilt collection. He views quilts as an essential building block of culture.

“This is what human beings are required to do, to take raw materials and transform them into something greater than the sum of their parts," Burns said. "And that’s what a quilt is, that’s what art is.”


Craft in America 1101 Quilts Fri 8p
 

The episode also features these contemporary artists and makers:

Susan Hudson, a Navajo/Diné artist from Sheep Springs, N.M. was taught to sew by her mother who was forced to sew at an “assimilation” boarding school. Hudson’s pictorial quilts honor her ancestors and the proud history of the Navajo people using a crossover style inspired by Ledger art. Recounting history through her ledger quilts has made Hudson an activist storyteller, chronicling the hardships endured by her ancestors.

Victoria Findlay Wolfe has a fine art degree in painting but found her life’s passion in quilt making. Now a New York-based International Award-Winning quilter, fabric designer, teacher, author and lecturer, Findlay Wolfe is known for making quilts that look difficult to make, then teaching quilters to make them. Each quilt Findlay Wolfe makes pushes boundaries, supporting her premise that creativity requires risk.

Michael A. Cummings is a nationally recognized quilter who lives and works in the historic Sugar Hill neighborhood of New York. Self-taught, Cummings brought years of painting and collage skills to his quilt making. Inspired by jazz and working in the narrative tradition, Cummings and his sewing machine tell stories of the African American experience across historical, cultural, philosophical and mythical realms.

Judith Content - "Craft in America" "Quilts"

Judith Content uses inspiration from nature and a Japanese resist dye technique, arashi shibori, to create glorious abstract wall quilts in her Palo Alto, Calif., studio. Content dyes then composes fabric into an abstract kimono form and uses her sewing machine as a drawing tool to achieve an evanescent visual haiku that communicates to viewers both emotionally and intellectually. These Art Quilts, made to be viewed on walls rather than placed on beds, expand both the definition of the quilt and its place in the art world. 

Visit the Craft in America websites (craftinamerica.org and pbs.org/craftinamerica) to view additional video clips as well as resources, information about quilt guilds nationwide, lists of exhibitions and shows, interviews with quilters, an education guide for K-12 students, quilting projects and a virtual gallery of quilts.

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MEDIA CONTACTS: Laura Chapman, 402-472-7232, lchapman2@unl.edu

Sandi Karstens, 402-470-6578, skarstens@netNebraska.org

NET, Nebraska’s PBS & NPR Stations, is the statewide public media service dedicated to creating opportunities for Nebraskans to engage with critical issues, compelling stories and quality entertainment. NET serves each of Nebraska’s 93 counties with 52,560 hours of programming each year on four television and two radio channels, plus online and mobile content. In addition to providing free, high-quality educational programming for children, NET provides programming in the arts, award-winning news and current affairs information and emergency alert services. For more information about NET, visit netNebraska.org.

The International Quilt Museum at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is home to the world's largest publicly held quilt collection with quilts dating from the 1600s to present and representing all 50 states and more than 55 countries. The IQM's mission is to build a global collection and audience that celebrate the cultural and artistic significance of quilts. For more information, visit internationalquiltmuseum.org.

Craft in America is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to advancing original handcrafted work through the Peabody Award-winning documentary series on PBS nationwide and the free-to-the-public Craft in America Center in Los Angeles. With twenty-one episodes produced since 2007, CRAFT IN AMERICA takes viewers on a journey to the artists, origins and techniques of American craft. Each episode contains stories from diverse regions and cultures, blending history with living practice and exploring issues of identity, ritual, philosophy and creative expression. Our websites craftinamerica.org and pbs.org/craftinamerica provide all episodes, hundreds of online videos and interactive learning materials, as well as object exhibitions, artist information, and the Random House book Craft in America: Celebrating Two Centuries of Artists and Objects and other Craft in America publications.

The Craft in America Center is an exhibition and learning space in Los Angeles. We give voice to traditional and contemporary craft through artist talks, workshops, exhibits and concerts. Our reference library contains over one thousand books and videos and is free to the public. We invite you to stop in and to join us for upcoming events and exhibitions – 8415 W. Third St., Los Angeles, CA  90048.

"QUILTS: HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE EPISODE" exhibition on view at the Craft in America Center, January 11-March 21, 2020.

To view the Artist Bios: craftinamerica.org/release/quilts-artist-bios