Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, a leading authority on African American quilts, curates Textile Center quilt exhibition paying tribute to Prince, and will give lecture on African American quilt history during March visit to Twin Cities
“Commemorating His Purple Reign: A Textural Tribute to Prince” national quilt exhibition opens Thursday, March 9, in Joan Mondale Gallery
Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi
As the first anniversary nears of the death of one of Minnesota’s most famous sons, Textile Center presents “Commemorating His Purple Reign: A Textural Tribute to Prince” in the Joan Mondale Gallery from March 9, through April 29, 2017. Juried and curated by Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, this exhibit features the work of 24 quilters from around the nation, including members of the Women of Color Quilting Network.
Traveling from her home in West Chester, Ohio, Mazloomi will attend the opening reception for this exhibit, which is set for Thursday, March 9, from 6 to 8 pm. Mazloomi is one of five internationally renowned fiber artists serving on Textile Center’s new National Artist Advisory Council, and two of her quilts will be featured in a companion exhibit in the Studio Gallery titled: "National Ties: Contemporary Textiles from the National Artist Advisory Council.” The exhibit will also feature works by Carolyn Halliday, Pat Hickman, Mary Giles, and Tracy Krumm.
An avid quilter, a leading authority on African American quilts and quilt making, and a Bess Lomax Hawes National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellow, Mazloomi will also present a lecture “Building a Legacy: African American Quilt History,” set for 6 pm Saturday, March 11, at the new headquarters of Minnesota Quilters at Recovery Church (235 State Street South) in St. Paul. This event, a co-presentation by Textile Center and Minnesota Quilters, also features jazz performances by singer Dennis W. Spears and The Wolverines Jazz Trio. (Tickets, priced at $30 and $25 for members of Textile Center and Minnesota Quilters, are available at textilecentermn.org or by calling 612-436-0464.)
During her whirlwind visit to the Twin Cities, Mazloomi will take part in a celebration of fiber art at Textile Center with her National Artist Advisory Council colleagues in “Fiber Art: Creating Ties That Bind,” a series of events centered around the opening of this Prince exhibit from March 8 – 12, 2017.
“Fiber Art: Creating Ties That Bind” is designed to give fiber artists in the Twin Cities region the opportunity to engage with members of the Artist Council through workshops and special events. Other activities include with the Artist Council include a Twin Cities Fiber Art Excursion to Weisman Art Museum and the Minnesota History Center on Thursday morning, March 9, as well as a Town Hall Lunch – “The Future for Fiber Art” –moderated by Artist Council chair, Carolyn Halliday of Minneapolis.
“Textile Center is fortunate to have this stellar cohort of artists joining us to support Textile Center’s mission to honor textile traditions, promote excellence and innovation, and inspire widespread participation in fiber art,” says Executive Director Karl Reichert. “The members of the National Artist Advisory Council will help us think even more boldly about our programming, taking our organization to new artistic heights. Our March festivities are a means for us to bring fiber artists and enthusiasts together for engaging dialogue and exciting learning experiences.
“We are particularly thrilled that Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi agreed to serve as a juror and curator for our Prince quilt exhibition,” Reichert adds. “She is a tireless advocate for African American quilt artists, and has curated many outstanding shows around the world, which are showcased in her published works that are in the collection of our Textile Center library.”
About Carolyn Mazloomi
Historian, Curator, Author, Lecturer, Artist, Mentor, Founder, and Facilitator — the remarkable and tireless Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi has left her mark on many lives. Trained as an aerospace engineer, Carolyn Mazloomi turned her sites and tireless efforts in the 1980s to bring the many unrecognized contributions of African American quilt artists to the attention of the American people as well as the international art communities.
From the founding of the African-American Quilt Guild of Los Angles in 1981 to the 1985 founding of the Women of Color Quilters Network (WCQN), Mazloomi has been at the forefront of educating the public about the diversity of interpretation, styles and techniques among African American quilters as well as educating a younger generation of African Americans about their own history through the quilts the WCQN members create.
A major force as an artist in her own right, Carolyn Mazloomi’s quilts have been exhibited extensively in venues such as the Mint Museum, American Folk Art Museum in New York City, National Civil Rights Museum, Museum of Art and Design, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum, and the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington. Her pictorial narrative quilts make plain her personal themes: family life, women’s rights, political freedom, and musical legacy. Her own quilts have been included in over 70 exhibits and she herself has curated 17 extensive exhibits of quilts made by members of the Women of Color Quilters Network, many of them traveling exhibits. Among the many exhibitions she has curated is “Still We Rise: Race, Culture and Visual Conversations”, which visually surveys 400 years of African American history. It is the largest travel exhibit of African American quilts ever mounted. In 2014 Mazloomi, along with co-curator Dr. Marsha MacDowell of Michigan State University Museum, presented an exhibition to honor Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Dr. Mazloomi’s quilts can be found in private collections around the world as well in distinguished museum collections in the United States. To date Dr. Mazloomi has published nine books highlighting African American-made quilts. Her artistic work, as well as her defense of solid research, has disrupted long-standing myths about African American quilts, myths much debated among quilt historians and quilters alike, and thus moved the conversation about African American quilt history forward to more a solid academic footing.
Mazloomi has been involved in the economic development of women through the arts for over twenty years. Her organization, WCQN, has been recognized by the International Labor Department in Geneva and the United Nations for its developmental programs to help advance women.
Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi has been the recipient of many state and national honors, among them the 2003 Ohio Heritage Fellowship Award, the first such award for any Ohio citizen. In 2014 she was named a National Heritage Fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts, the highest award given in the United States for traditional arts. In 2014 she was awarded the Distinguished Scholar & Celebrated Artist Lifetime Achievement Award by Faith Ringgold’s Anyone Can Fly Foundation. Dr. Mazloomi is the 2016 inductee to the Quilters Hall of Fame Museum.
TEXTILE CENTER – A NATIONAL CENTER FOR FIBER ART
Textile Center is unique as America's national center for fiber art. A nonprofit arts center, Textile Center’s mission is to honor textile traditions, promote excellence and innovation, and inspire widespread participation in fiber arts.
The Center’s facility includes exceptional fiber art exhibitions in four galleries, an artisan shop, the region’s only accessible professional-grade dye lab, A Garden to Dye For natural dye plant garden, and one of the nation's largest circulating textile library open to the public. Textile Center produces more than 200 classes a year for all ages and skill levels, the Youth Fiber Art Guild™, and the Jerome Fiber Artist Project Grants. A dynamic hub of fiber activity for 23 years, Textile Center brings people together in community to learn, create, share and be inspired by fiber art.
For more information, visit: http://textilecentermn.org.