MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Exhibit: She Knew Where She Was Going: Gee’s Bend Quilts and Civil Rights:
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Description of Pictures: She Knew Where She Was Going: Gee’s Bend Quilts and Civil Rights
March 10, 2021 — September 12, 2021
Gee’s Bend, Alabama, is home to generations of extraordinary Black craftswomen whose quilts represent a crucial chapter in the history of American Art. Since the early 1800s, women of Gee’s Bend have transformed worn clothes, sacks, and other fabric remnants into patterns that surpass the boundaries of the genre. Born out of necessity, the quilts provided warmth for family and friends while bearing witness to shared knowledge passed down among quilting groups and female lineages.
Burdened by decades of exploitative sharecropping and racial discrimination, Gee’s Bend quilters seized an opportunity to use their artistry for empowerment in 1966, following a visit by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr to Gee’s Bend. Determined to live in a more equal society as well as enfranchise their families, more than 60 quilters formed a business partnership called the Freedom Quilting Bee (active 1966–2012). This cooperative championed the vision and production of Gee’s Bend quilters in national art auctions, commercial partnerships, and museum exhibitions. Within three years, their ingenuity altered the local economy. Quilters were able to purchase washing machines, automobiles, and school supplies, in addition to telephones and electric lines.
With the support of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation and Community Partnership, the BMA has purchased five quilts by Gee’s Bend artists including, Diamond in Square by Pearlie Irby Pettway (American, c. 1898–1955); Four-Block Strip by Loretta Pettway (American, b. 1942); Blocks and Strips by Nell Hall Williams (American, b. 1933); Chestnut Bud by Lucy Mingo (American, b. 1931); and Housetop by Lucy T. Pettway (American, 1921–2004). The recently acquired works will be on view in the Berman Textile Gallery in the American Wing.
Souls Grown Deep is dedicated to promoting the work of Gee’s Bend artists and African American artists from the South a ...More...
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GQUILT_210808_54.JPG: "We was hard witnessing the civil rights movement for the right to vote, and the right to live right and love one another and not hate one another. And so I marched, I stood 'fore guns, I took tear gas... I was not there to hurt nobody. I was not there to do no harm to nobody. I was out there to help everyone, not for one but for all of us, and I felt like God was there."
-- Nettie Young, Co-Founder of the Freedom Quilting Bee
GQUILT_210808_57.JPG: The quilters of Gee's Bend made their own way, especially in finding a collective means to strengthen their community and advocate for their civil rights through their art.
Learn more about how you can join others in building a better Baltimore at artbma.org/geesbend
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2014_MD_BMA_WingOpenS_141123: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Event: American Wing Opening Celebration -- Step Cleaning and Performance (105 photos from 2014)
2014_MD_BMA_WingOpenR_141123: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Event: American Wing Opening Celebration -- Ribbon Cutting (29 photos from 2014)
2014_MD_BMA_WingOpenA_141123: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Event: American Wing Opening Celebration -- After Ribbon Cutting (21 photos from 2014)
2021_08_08C1_BMA: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Not specified elsewhere (18 photos from 08/08/2021)
2019_MD_BMA: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Not specified elsewhere (9 photos from 2019)
2018_MD_BMA: MD -- Baltimore -- Baltimore Museum of Art -- Not specified elsewhere (8 photos from 2018)
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2021 photos: This year was filled with hope. Yes, the COVID-19 pandemic is still with us but it was hoped that restoring sanity to the White House. the rapid vaccine role-out, and a government that finally cared would put things back to normal again. But the force was strong in the evil anti-vaxxer movement and the virus variants made quick use of that so we're still dealing with this crap.
Trips this year:
after getting fully vaccinated, I made a trip down to Asheville, NC in May to visit my dad and his wife Dixie,
in mid-July, I made a quick trip up to Stockbridge, MA to see the Norman Rockwell Museum again as well as Daniel Chester French's place @ Chesterwood.