Monday, October 08, 2007

The meaning of art quilts

Today I finished my first quilt for the Twelveby12 group challenge. I can't show it to you becuase we are having a grand reveal on the blog on 1st Nov - be sure to check us out! However, I will say that it has got me all philosphical.

This is the first quilt I have made which is about something as opposed to just looking pretty. I wouldn't say it tells a story exactly but it does represent a thought - a kind of life musing- triggered by the process of thinking about dandelions which was the set theme. My question is - does it matter if no one else can get to the same thought just by looking at my quilt? Or indeed, does it matter if they come to another interpretation all together?

Personally, I am more concerned that the embellishments don't fall off than I am about imparting some great nuggets of wisdom. But I'd like your views on whether clarity of message is a part of making an art quilt 'successful' .


Erica said...

Hmm, interesting question. I'm not sure that any piece of art, textile or other, has to have a message or a meaning. Surely the shape, colour or texture that appeals is enough? Isn't beauty an end in itself?

Nellie's Needles said...

There are levels to art pieces. Many observers never get past the first impression ... either, "that's nice" or quickly passing on. Others get drawn to varying levels by different elements ... responding to the subject, actual colors, design lines, or the mood conveyed by relationship of values.

This is the main reason to make art that pleases, or has meaning to ourselves. If a few other people "get it", that's a bonus in my book. One thing that I do on occasion is ask a friend or family member what they "see" in a piece I'm in the process of creating. If their interpretation or observation is close to my intent, I know I'm on the right track. If not, I rethink how to get my intent read "properly" OR what my intent really is.

Nikki said...

Its always nice when we are able to communicate in a way that people can understand. But it can also be fun to hear what other people read. I think the multiple layers and interpretations add to a piece.

margaret said...

Not "clarity" of message, necessarily -- but a successful art quilt should (imho) make the viewer stop and think. Or at least pause. And think. (Rather than simply say "I like that" or "I don't like that.")