The Gender Kisses project with Molli Sparkles has wrapped up, and it has taken me awhile to start to get my thoughts together, to be honest. I’m forever grateful that Molli and I took the time to discuss the initial Men and Quilting topic, and move forward into a fun project together.
Prince passed away while I was making this quilt, which puts a little more meaning into it for me personally. Prince was many things, and a couple of those things are “gender fluid” and also, believe it not “feminist”.
Things got pretty heated after my Men and Quilting post. Mostly it has calmed down since then, with the exception of one commenter who is now blocked from my site due his harassing and offensive comments he has repeatedly left on my blog since January. I was left creatively empty for a good long while after, I was so disappointed with the reaction towards feminism in the quilt world.
What interests me more, are the comments that were left on the post about the project on Molli’s page. The most common were “Who cares?” and “Why does it matter?” “Why are we talking about this in quilting?”
It started to make sense to me what was different from my perspective. I am not doing quilting as a hobby, and I am not doing it as a long arm quilter. I came to quilting via the traditional quilt world, but quickly immersed myself in the art quilting side. I cam to quilting as an artist. I came to quilting as a feminist. I don’t think most quilters are accustomed to political and sociological protest and discourse in this realm. Many people come to quilting as “retreat” from such things.
I am currently even more grateful for the project and discourse with Molli. I have learned something about myself, my quilt making is very much about my beliefs and experiences. I find a special feeling of accomplishment when I make a piece that is a visual representation of something I stand for.
This will likely mean putting more of those beliefs INTO my quilts. In fact, the next post I will be putting up, is a combination of the traditional quilt world and the call for civil rights. I’m pretty excited about this one, and can’t wait for decent weather/lighting to get the photos done for it!
To the people that don’t feel quilting is the place for a “forum”, that’s okay. You won’t be forced to read my blog. 😉
To the couple men who still find themselves so angry at my feminism that they leave hateful comments, I have this parting quote:
Men of quality are not threatened by women of equality. – Thomas Jefferson
5 thoughts on “Gender Kisses: The Conclusion”
I am extremely happy to have this experience be part of my portfolio of work, as an artist, a quilter, a feminist, and human being. Thank you for engaging with me to create two beautiful pieces that we can both be proud of making!
Fabulous! The discussion, the quilts, your attitudes. Well done! Congratulations on an interesting project and I look forward to seeing your traditional/civil rights quilt.
Bravo on putting your beliefs into your quilts. While I may not agree with opinion and we’ve talked about that, I am in full support of you putting your beliefs, opinions, and really anything you want into your quilts, as well as stating your opinion about it. If other people don’t like what you think, they don’t have to agree. They don’t have to look at your work, or take part in your blog. One of the great things about the internet, there’s a little red box with an X that will take it all away from view if you don’t like what you see or read.
I think that your perspective is probably different from a lot of quilters, not from a hobby or career standpoint, but that this is one of your chosen mediums for your artwork and that puts a new spin on how it is viewed by you, even when other people may not always see the meaning that you see. I use to come up against this all the time, whether drawing, painting, quilting, or whatever other medium I chose. I typically like to “make pretty pictures”. I’ve been criticized for creating “fluff” pieces by the Art world. But what they don’t see is that I pour a lot of my feelings, beliefs, etc into my artwork and when I look at them, that’s what I see. I also don’t always pour a lot of my soul out in the artist statement on a piece, because frankly, I don’t necessarily think it’s anyone else’s business why I created the work and what I was thinking about when I was doing it. It’s for me, only for me. Other reasons are that when I pour some of myself into a piece of artwork, it may not always hold positive meaning for me, regardless of looking “pretty” or not. When I sell it or give it away, the feelings that I had while making it often go with it. It’s cathartoic to “get rid” of it. With that being said if another person enjoys it and takes a different meaning from it, that’s fine with me. That artwork has done it’s job for me. No need to make anything negative experienced while creating it contagious and spread that onto another person.
Anyway, I’m just saying that not everyone has the same perspective when it comes to quilting, artwork, craft, etc. I get it. Some people don’t see below the surface, some choose not to, some don’t want their “retreat” from the outside world to invade their special zen activity and that’s ok. Just as it’s ok to put whatever you’d like into your work and be bold. Make that statement, whatever it may be.
BTW, love your quilt and could see you all over it when I saw the two side by side.
An interesting experiment comes to a close – what fun it was to guess. Anyhow Stephanie, two beautiful quilts came out of it. Nice work!
Great quilt 🙂 Any comments from said misogynistic quilter go straight to my spam box. He bangs on about what a great artist he is (he’s not) and spouts such bile I really don’t know who would include him in the millions and millions of shows he’s apparently been invited to participate in.
Anyway, to change the subject to something infinitely more positive – to me an artist has something to say and finds a medium to say it in (which might include textiles and quilting, photography, installation, etc); a quilter quilts for the love of quilting without necessarily wanting to express anything other than a joy of colour, pattern and stitch. There’s nothing wrong with either approach. I enjoy being in both camps, but my art is definitely informed by feminism and what it means to be female. Like you, I think quilting and textiles is a wonderful way to explore those themes. And it gets on my tits when someone denigrates that, which is why I wrote the original post in the first place. I am a feminist, loud and proud!