That’s a good question!
I just received the latest issue of the AQS magazine and it showcases the winners at the recent shows at Paducah and Lancaster. The quilts were beautiful. So certainly, all of us were winners for having been able to see them. Not having seen them first hand I can only image that the level of workmanship was superb. But, looking at these photos, I felt a twinge of sadness. The greatest majority of them could be considered art quilts…or at least modern. Not many would be considered traditional.
I’m going to stop here and say that I love art quilts! I don’t typically make them but I like them and I admire those who can express themselves using cloth instead of paint or clay. They are stunning and worthy winners. There is a place in the quilting world for every type of quilt. I only wonder this….is it possible for a traditional-in-the-true-sense-of-the-word quilt to win an award at one of these major shows? If it were meticulously pieced and gloriously quilted could it stand up next to a beautiful, stunning and modern quilt and win?
I wonder if in judging quilts, we’ve gotten so far away from our roots that the traditionals are hardly considered. Or is it that in the recent past so many of the winners have been more modern and artful that the purely traditional quilter doesn’t even enter?
In this magazine I saw so many quilts that were drop dead gorgeous and I drooled over them and almost coveted them. I knew they were out of my skill set and I envied and admired them. But I still couldn’t see them on a bed keeping someone warm at night.
I guess I’m just saying that while these winners are beautiful and deserving of awards, I just wish there was more of a place in the winner’s circle for more traditional quilts. After all, they represent our roots. It’s kind of like forgetting Grandma.