Thursday, April 7, 2011

STORY QUILTS



One of my favorite parts about traveling is finding the perfect souvenir to bring home. I've never really been into kitschy knickknacks--instead, I prefer to find a piece of clothing that will serve as a reminder of where I've been.



This skirt was acquired while on vacation, and I think it is the perfect souvenir of my recent travels. I love the way quilts are a synthesis of many different parts that are stitched together into one cohesive piece.



When I wear the skirt, I can't help but think of the story quilts of Faith Ringgold (b. 1930).



Ringgold grew up in Harlem, and was inspired at a young age by the fabrics her mother used in designing clothing in their home.



Her painted quilts feature narrative themes, often about the struggle for civil rights.



These painted quilts fuse together high art and craft--and simultaneously record stories about the plight of African Americans in the civil rights era.



Ringgold's work relates well to the work of Romare Bearden, which I discussed here.



For its debut, I paired the skirt with a simple chambray shirt and fun wedges. I can't wait to wear it with a thin tank and sandals this summer.



I'm wearing a Thai patchwork skirt from Stefan's Vintage, Ralph Lauren shirt, vintage Indian brass necklace, and Jeffrey Campbell calf hair wedges.



[Ringgold images from boiseartmuseum.org, artcritical.com, negroartist.com, and katiedelavaughn.blogspot.com, respectively.]

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