Mini Quilt: "When It All Changed"

{ "When It All Changed" - mini quilt, November 2010 }

The annual Artist Mentor Exhibition is coming up at New Urban Arts (December 10th!) and I've been working on a special piece to show.

Last year, I was a new mentor, new to calling myself an artist, and it was my very first exhibition ever. I ended up bringing in lots of things to show - a milk carton coin purse, bag, wallet, a wall hanging, an apron, earrings....there might even have been more. I wasn't sure what to show, so I just showed everything.

While that was a great first step to showing my work last year, I feel like I'm in a different place this year, and I want the exhibition to reflect that. I wanted to try my hand at creating something that's a little bit more of an "art" piece, rather than strictly craft.

But what's the difference between art and craft? Why are they separate in my head?

I had a long chat with my friend Emmy about that question, and she helped me realize that for me and my work:
Craft = created with some kind of usefulness in mind
Art = created with some deeper meaning, something that's very personal to me

So I guess they're not necessarily separate things - there can be overlap - but I also know that my definitions are still evolving.

So, to get to the piece I created:
For the past few months, I keep going back and peeking at this mini quilt created by Elizabeth at Oh Fransson. It was inspired by the Tokyo subway map:

{ Tokyo Subway Map Mini Quilt - Oh Fransson! }

I love this piece, and I love art inspired by maps. I thought about making a similar quilt myself, but the Tokyo subway map doesn't mean much to me, nor does Boston, even though the colors would be so beautiful. (This is how I realized that art = personal to me...I was looking for inspiration that would be more connected to me).

After holding the idea in my head for a few months, I came across a different kind of map that does have a lot of personal meaning to me: a time map, my google calendar. I chose to translate the month of March from this year into a mini quilt.

March was a big month for me - that's when I took a great leap, cut down my hours to part time, and decided to devote more time to Connect the Dots and other arts in my life. That's really "When it all changed" for me - my schedule, my priorities, and my feelings about myself as an artist.

{ pattern sketch }

This was the first quilt I've made that I designed the pattern for myself.

I used only my favorite fabrics, choosing a different color for each calendar that I have - work, The Hive, New Urban Arts, Connect the Dots, and my personal calendar.

Like Elizabeth's map quilt, I wanted mine to be beautiful and seemingly a little random when first looking at it, and then have another level of meaning once you see the title/discover where the inspiration came from.

{ back }

I had so much fun creating this, and I'm so excited to show it at the mentor exhibition!

What do you think the difference between art and craft is?


  1. I'm speechless Carole Ann - this post is so wonderful in so many ways. Can't wait to see the Mentor show.


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