In View | Wrapped Up in Quilts at the Dunedin Fine Art Center

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In the Douglas-Whitley Gallery at the Dunedin Fine Art Center (DFAC) some of the 18 finalist and winning quilts in the Nation Quilt Museum’s 23rd annual competition hang on display until mid-August.  The challenge this year was to create a quilt from the classic New York Beauty block pattern and the entries in this exhibit are all stunning works of art and skill that exemplify “New Quilts from an Old Favorite”.


Entitled Be Part Of It!,  this quilt by Vel Garrick, of Vacaville, CA, was one of the finalists in the 23rd annual National Quilt Museum competition.  Involving over 1,000 hours of work, it is a colorful depiction of New York City, incorporating the New York Beauty blocks in the border and sun.  It is a wonderfully detailed quilt that demands an up close look and exploration.


This detail from Be Part Of It, a quilt by Vel Garrick, shows the iconic Statue of Liberty and a few of the many pieces of cotton novelty prints that comprise the mosaic image.


One of the most admired pieces in the “New York Beauty” quilt exhibit currently at the Dunedin Fine Art Center, is “Liberty Day” by Tere D’Amato of Mashpee, MA.  Depicting a commemorative stamp to honor those who arrived at Ellis Island as early immigrants (the quilter’s grandmother was one of them), the piece was awarded third place in the National Quilt Museum’s annual competition.


Holding up a corner of the “Liberty Day” quilt in the Dunedin Fine Art Center’s current Quilts & Textiles exhibit, Lenore Loftus reveals the detailed back, featuring examples of real documents from immigrants arriving at Ellis Island, more than a century ago.  Loftus, a quilter herself, came from Sarasota to see this exhibit and said this particular piece held a strong and personally emotional appeal.  Her grandmother came to America from Greece in 1905, and she still remembers hearing the stories of her passage and arrival at Ellis Island.


Works by Florida-based members of Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) are part of the current Quilts & Textiles exhibits currently at the Dunedin Fine Art Center.  The Douglas-Whitely and Meta B. Brown galleries feature submissions on the theme of “Growth” and the wide variety of small and large pieces depict many colorful and detailed expressions of the theme.


Urban Maul by Annette Boncek is a 3D constructed quilt, part of the exhibit by Florida Studio Art Quilt Associates at the Dunedin Fine Art Center currently.  It features a mix of free-motion stitched trees surrounded by high rise buildings of hand embroidery appliqué – a commentary on modern urban growth.


Maggie Dillon’s Poppy Picnic is one of the eye-catching pieces in the Florida SAQA exhibit – Growth – at the Dunedin Fine Art Center’s current Quilt & Textiles show.  Dillon is a textile/fiber artist who works exclusively with batik fabric and she uses photographic references to create her fiber portraits like this quilted beauty.


SAQA Florida quilter, Barbara W. Watler designed “Her Eye is on the Sparrow” with inspiration from one of her favorite childhood hymns.  The whole cloth reverse appliqué work is one of the many pieces in the current exhibit at the Dunedin Fine Art Center’s Quilt & Textiles show.


One of four current quilt and textile exhibit at the Dunedin Fine Art Center, “Shirt Tales: Portraits by Karol Kusmaul” shows the artist’s unique work with upcycled fabrics she calls her “glad rags”.  Inspired by photos of people, whether simply a face or those engaged in everyday activities, her machine quilted  portraits are detailed, somewhat whimsical and always engaging.


Motherboard (also known as Emerald), a machine quilted work by artist Karol Kusmaul is part of her Shirt Tales exhibit in the John and Pat Rossi Gallery at the Dunedin Fine Art Center.  The title comes from pieces she used that reminded her of the circuitry in a computer.  Kusmaul creates these detailed portraits by incorporating upcycled materials, like parts of a broken sandal for the earrings in this piece.


“Shirt Tales: Portraits by Karol Kusmaul” is a delightful exhibit by this Inverness, Florida artist who uses upcycled materials to create machine quilted and appliquéd images inspired by real life photos.


Elizabeth’s Wishes is one of the charming and detailed quilted works by Karol Kusmaul, in her “Shirt Tales” exhibit, now showing at the Dunedin Fine Art Center, through mid-August, along with three other Quilts & Textiles exhibits at the center.

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