At the very last minute on the very last day, I paid my final visit to an artist’s studio at this year’s event: quilter Linzi Upton, known by the fantastic moniker ‘The Quilt Quine.’ (Quine is ‘girl’ in Doric, the dialect of NE Scotland) Linzi quilts using two incredible looking beasts, and Sol is pictured above next to the biggest one! Long arm quilting isn’t something I’m familiar with, but it can create very free, sweeping patterns as well as tiny intricate details, and is seriously impressive. There was a lot of metallic thread and fabric in Linzi’s work, especially the use of gold and silver lamé fabric, which looked gorgeous when quilted, almost like real poured gold. Her recent series of Nordic-inspired panels were hanging up in her studio and some of them reminded me of the pre-Colombian gold pieces in the Museo de Oro in Bogotá.
Linzi also quilts antique quilt tops and offers a quilting service for people who like piecing but not quilting. This very traditional wedding ring quilt is one of the old ones given new life by her skills:
Linzi is also the creator of a quilted yurt, which I believe is on its way to Houston, Texas as part of the IQA exhibition ‘Tactile Architecture.’ She hadn’t put the yurt up this year, but had all the panels for flipping through as well as a few photos of the yurt in all its glory. It has a Celtic theme and this hare panel is quite magical:
For all her talent and prolificacy, my visit to the Quilt Quine left me a bit sad. Linzi spoke of her career crossroads today (and at greater length on her blog) regarding whether to continue her pursuit of quilting as a viable source of income, or return to full-time school teaching. It’s a reminder of the difficulties in making a living from art and creativity. Not for nothing the term ‘starving artist’- and when the love of your art gets swallowed up in profit, loss, prize winning (or not), it must be sad and frustrating in equal measure.