QuiltCon and the effects of visual perception

Exhibits, improv process

My preparation for the visit in the US to QuiltCon 2024 started four months in advance. In these days, Fabia Delise mentioned the retrospective exhibition dedicated to the abstract expressionist Mark Rothko hosted by the Fondation Louis Vuitton. Perfect timing! I decided that my connecting flight had to pass through Paris, and I booked the tickets for that gallery.

It was a very strong experience. The large paintings by Rothko game me the idea of wide horizons, of the blocking of walls, of the wish to dive in, of the feeling to fly above… The luminosity of space was recognized very well by my visual perception system. This show made me wish to spend more time outdoor or, as paper engineer Annalisa Metus recently said, of being en plein air.

I spent the rest of my day in Paris walking in the zone of La Défense in Paris, where I found the monument “Iris” by Raymond Moretti, among skyscrapers illuminated in the night.

When I arrived to my destination, at QuiltCon, one of the first quiltmakers that I met was Scott Culley. His quilt Shadow won first prize in the Piecing category: congratulations Scott! Only at a certain distance, the composition of a face can be recognized. He made other works based on visual perception effects, such as the earlier quilt Mask-3.

A few days before going to QuiltCon, I read the impressive story of the work Reconceived by Jennifer Candon, and how she is aware of visual perception factors, while choosing colorful zones and areas for the eyes to rest, in her quilts. I commented her: “I bet on an award”. Indeed her work won the first prize in the Improv category.

Here you can see how big is the work of Jennifer, at right; in the center, still in the Improv category, was hanging my quilt “Night Lights” juried in the show.

Night Lights is intended as an abstract work, even if it is based on a real experience feeling. I use to walk by the sea in whatever hour of the day. Late afternoon hour in Winter is enough to find an extreme condition: a black sky above a black horizon of water. The tip of the pier is one of my favorite places, where only natural illumination remains, the last streetlamp and its wavy reflections left behind.

I was happy to find in the show the work Iridescence by Julie Reuben , which has been juried also in the Abstraction: Textural Elements (SAQA Global Exhibition) together with my quilt Open air. Her handwork quilting creates color play in a very interesting zone: the limit of visibility.

2 thoughts on “QuiltCon and the effects of visual perception

  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I loved all of these quilts, too.

  2. How wonderful that you were able to attend an art exhibit in Paris before going to Raleigh! The things you saw look very inspiring. I’m glad you were able to meet Scott Culley, and I agree that Jennifer Candon’s quilt, “Reconceived” was worthy of receiving an award. I saw that in advance too! Your “Night Lights” quilt is visually stunning – the receding light is quite visible. You did an excellent job executing your vision.

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