Old Maid’s Ramble Quilt,
1852-1858 Anna Zerissa Morse Thurston
February 14 – April 29, 2012 Creating Community: Quilts as Women’s Shelter
Creating Community: Quilts as Women’s Shelter explore quilts created by traditional 19th and 20th century communities and by participants in an innovative 21st century community program.
Featured are quilts from the Museum’s collection, sometimes called signature, friendship, or subscription quilts. They illustrate how groups that are related through family, geography, religion, or common interests made quilts to serve different community purposes. Some are intended for the personal use of the recipient, whereas others have a broader audience and purpose.
Other quilts are drawn from The Quilts as Women’s Shelter program, a unique project of three community organizations—the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles, Santa Clara Valley Quilt Association, and Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence. Each week, participants in Next Door Solutions programs attend classes to learn fundamental art theory and quilt making techniques. Upon completion of their first quilt, the women receive a sewing machine and basic quilt making supplies and are honored in a graduation ceremony at the Museum. Even though Quilts as Women’s Shelter is a simple concept, it has had astounding effects on the women. This is the first public exhibition of their work.