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Does quilting count as art? In Four Centuries of Quilts, an expansive new survey published by Yale University Press, authors Linda Baumgarten and Kimberly Smith Ivey say yes. “Many quilts actually take the viewer into the sublime,” they write. “They make you feel something you might not have felt otherwise. This is what makes quilts a form of art and not simply a craft with the function of providing warmth.”
The book presents a powerful case. It features 150 intricate quilts from the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, an institution in Virginia that boasts one of the country’s finest quilt collections. Most were created by women whose lives were largely ignored by history, even while their handiwork transcended race, religion, and culture. These include embroidered silk quilts from India, calico ones from Europe, and appliquéd examples from Hawaii. There are nine-patch quilts sewn by rural Amish communities in Ohio and Pennsylvania, as well as star quilts pieced together by African American women in Gee’s Bend, Alabama. These richly informative textiles connect us to the past, other cultures, each other. Sounds like art to me.
Poussin and the Dance is a valiant attempt to break into Poussin’s staunchly academic oeuvre and provide a relatable point of entry, highlighting the exciting elements of revelry and movement despite impenetrable and unemotional rendering.
Anarchist illustrator N.O. Bonzo produces decentralized media in a highly bureaucratic cultural landscape. Their illustrations, murals, and literature emerge in unexpected places, from the streets of Portland, Oregon, to the far ends of Reddit and Twitter, addressing relations of labor and identity in the workplace and on the streets. Growth and care are central themes…
This exhibition explores how images of the human body were used to provoke profound physical and emotional responses in viewers from the 15th through 18th centuries.
With scavenged materials, Amanda Maciel Antunes constructs a motherland.
Where are the directors taking the stage to acknowledge workers’ demands today?
The collaborative handmade paper- and printmaking center at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts publishes new works by Liz Collins and Sarah McEneaney.
There is a debate whether the memory of Little Syria should be seized upon to tell truthful and positive stories about Arabs in the US, or whether any conflation between its history and contemporary politics is inappropriate.
The profile includes works by Egon Schiele, Amedeo Modigliani, Peter Paul Rubens, and a prehistoric Venus of Willendorf figurine.
These horrifying dolls definitely won’t murder you in your sleep.