Chances are, these aren‚??t your great-grandma‚??s quilts. ‚?Ę Not unless Granny used paint and burning techniques as well as stitchery. ‚?Ę Or depicted images of fish skeletons, blood vessels or a tiny dancer playing with an umbrella. ‚?Ę Or worked into her art such themes as Colorado wildfires, hyper-consumerism and the plight of endangered animals.
‚??In the quilting world, when you say something is ‚??contemporary,‚?? people know it‚??s not quite the traditional textile art we‚??re used to,‚?Ě curator Nezka Pfeifer said, explaining what you can expect if you visit the Everhart Museum in Scranton to see ‚??Sightlines.‚?Ě
The traveling exhibit, on display through Dec. 31 courtesy of the Studio Art Quilt Associates, includes work by 14 artists from around the world.
And, for many creatures, it‚??s a world in danger.
That‚??s the clear message in ‚??No Room at the Table,‚?Ě a quilt that shows a bear, a zebra, a manatee and other animals gazing forlornly at a human who seems to be devouring the earth, on a platter, with a fork.
‚?? ‚??No Room at the Table‚?? is meant to elicit awareness,‚?Ě artist Annie Helmericks-Louder of Warrensburg, Mo., wrote in a statement. ‚??We are witnessing the disappearance of ice lands and green mansions. In the course of our consumption, more and more species ‚?? essential, living links ‚?? are being severed from the chain of land‚??s diversity ‚?Ľ. By our disregard, apathy, need or greed, humans are dropping the other hands of life. And, in doing so, we are stepping out of the sacred circle.‚?Ě
The message is less clear in ‚??Disrupted,‚?Ě a quilt by Kathy Nida of El Cajon, Calif., which shows a woman‚??s body surrounded by symbols. Why does she have a yin-yang on one arm and a fish swimming up the other? Is there a cougar watching her from the tall grass? What about the hands that seem to be offering her a beverage?
‚??If you were to ask me to explain this piece, to detail the meanings hidden within, I would not be able to,‚?Ě Nida admits frankly in her artist‚??s statement. She does say she has lived through a disruption of some sort, is experiencing ‚??real-life chaos,‚?Ě and hints it might be connected to the ‚??something like 60,000 miles of blood vessels in the adult human body.‚?Ě
Among the international offerings are a piece by Sue Dennis of Queensland, Australia, whose ‚??A Dry Land‚?Ě pays tribute to early Australian explorers, many of whom ‚??did not survive the harsh, hot, dry land with its dried -up riverbeds.‚?Ě
Fulvia Luciano derived inspiration from the bridge over Lake Maracaibo in her native Venezuela for her piece ‚??Tension,‚?Ě Linda Colsh of Belgium depicted a person finding, dancing with and then discarding a paper umbrella, and Britta Ankenbauer from Germany decried the materialism that led to the world economic crisis in her piece ‚??Immer Nie Genug,‚?Ě or ‚??Ever Never Enough.‚?Ě
Working through the universal theme of the pain of loss, Jayne Willoughby Scott from Alberta, Canada, expressed her grief over ‚??the death of several family members and dear friends‚?Ě in a piece called ‚??Thoughts,‚?Ě which she describes as her ‚??rumination about the human spirit.‚?Ě
Examine the words upon words jumbled and juxtaposed in her quilt, and you‚??ll make out ‚??dear mother,‚?Ě ‚??dear father,‚?Ě ‚??brother,‚?Ě ‚??cousin‚?Ě and ‚??necessary.‚?Ě
What: Sightlines, a contemporary art-quilt installation
Where: Everhart Museum, 1901 Mulberry St., Scranton
When: noon to 4 p.m. Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays; noon to 5 p.m. Sundays
More info: 346-7186