Sometimes words fail me, so I depend on art, either by creating it or viewing it, to articulate what I'm feeling. I started working on Out Of The Fog, Came A Roar shortly after my family and I walked in The Women's March (D.C.) on January 21.
When the Threads of Resistance exhibition was announced, I knew it was a tremendous opportunity for quilt artists to create work relating to our current political atmosphere.
Though my work was not chosen for the exhibit and probably won't be seen by many people, I thank you for reading this and am grateful that I can share it with you. I encourage you to visit the site and see the work submitted as well as the work chosen for the exhibit.
My statement is below the photo.
Out of The Fog Came A Roar
27" x 45"
In the days following the Women’s March, I had a hard time answering the question, “How was D.C.?” While I had words to describe the event, I was unable to explain the experience. Transformative only scratched the surface.
I needed to quietly process that day. Unfortunately, with the new administration in office and the bewildering sequence of events that followed, moments of quiet reflection were rare. Just as I felt the glow of the March begin to fade away, an image appeared in my mind. I could not connect it to anything, so I just let it stay there, hoping to interpret what it meant.
As part of my processing, I turned to a quilt I started in November 2015, High Road To the White House. Working with the base block, Many Roads to the White House, (a pattern attributed to the Kansas City Star, 1955), I wanted a quilt that would commemorate the election and perhaps send a vibe to the candidates to take the high road, something I have always taught my son to do. Yet no sooner had I started the project did I abandon it. It became clear that this campaign was on a different trajectory, one that often left me speechless. I shuddered at my naiveté. While handling the abandoned blocks, the haunting image reappeared; a enormous moving shadow of black, grey and white, squeezed and re-emerging as a stunning, multi-colored shape. I grabbed my scissors and began to cut the blocks I had tossed aside thirteen months earlier. Everything fell into place.
I remembered that on the morning of the March, we walked to The Washington Monument, which significantly stood cut in half by fog. It felt like that same fog that had shrouded me since the election. I stared at in sadness for a few moments and when I looked away, I realized that the casual group we had walked in with had grown into a large, cohesive, committed assembly, dropping their own shrouds, eager to have their voices heard.
Things began to get loud, and then came a roar.
I will never forget it - I felt pulled in by the roar. As the passage to the stage became smaller, I lost sight of my family, but I knew they were safe. I raised our green and purple protest quilt, Save Our Democracy, hoping that they would see me. As the crowd got bigger and distance between each of us smaller, I found it difficult to take a deep breath. With my camera clutched tightly to my chest, I could not even move my arms to take a picture. Instead, this powerful, peaceful, determined and committed group, became part of me, and I became part of a movement.
In that moment, we made history. We came out of our collective fog and we roared.