I recently returned from the annual SAQA conference that
took place in Athens, Ohio on the Ohio University campus, and what an
incredible time! For those who are unfamiliar with SAQA (Studio Art Quilt
Associates), it is the non-profit organization to belong to if you are an art
quilter (or aspire to be an art quilter). I am honored to be a Board member of
SAQA, and strongly encourage you to join if you aren’t already a member.
Every year SAQA
holds a conference that is geared towards art quilters who want to hone their
marketing skills, further their professional development (such as web
marketing, pricing of quilts, etc.), critique works-in-progress, share
successes, and get to know one another better. There is also a pre-conference
component where you can partake in intensive, hands-on workshops on art
Quilt National 2009 debuted simultaneously at the Dairy Barn
and the 87 quilts chosen for this year’s exhibit were exquisite. This was the
30th anniversary of Quilt National, a biennial juried show and
traveling exhibit and it is considered one of the most prestigious contemporary
quilt exhibits in the world.
An unusual and unexpected quilt entry. Below is a picture of
Susan Else with her colorful, quilted skeleton, “Nothing to Fear.”
Sing along with me now: The hip bone's connected to the....leg bone...
My friend and fellow SAQA board member, Lind Colsh poses
with her Quilt National quilt, “Twisting the Plot.”
Kathy York's three-dimensional entry, "Little Fish in a Big City" certainly drew crowds. (You may remember her "Little Fishes" quilt that appeared in Quilting Arts a couple of years ago.) Here's a detail shot of her Quilt National entry:
Quilters try for years (if not decades) to get into this
show, and that was why it was so remarkable and exciting to see fresh faces
(such as Liz DeBellis, a 24-year-old elementary school art teacher) in this
year’s show. Below is a picture of her quilt in the new Quilt National 2009
book (published by Lark).
I sat with Liz and her family at the Quilt National/SAQA
banquet, and got to ask her a few questions:
The next annual SAQA conference will be co-facilitated with
the Surface Design Association and take place in San Francisco in March 2010.
My colleague, Marci McDade, editor of Fiberarts will be speaking, and you wont
want to miss it! More information on this conference forthcoming.