Special exhibit "Quilt National" open through Oct. 15

Birds flourishing next to oil rigs, the moon and earthquakes are among the inspiration for art quilts featured in a special exhibit at the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums.

“Quilt National” features 20 contemporary art quilts that were entered in the 2015 Quilt National competition, a biennial juried competition of the contemporary art quilt, which takes place at The Dairy Barn Arts Center in Athens, Ohio.

The exhibit is in the lower level of the Hayes Museum. It will be on display through Oct. 15.

Although the exhibit was scheduled to officially open Saturday, June 3, the museum is opening it to the public a day early.

Quilts displayed in this exhibit were made in 2012 or 2014 by artists in the United States and around the world. They feature a variety of fabrics, colors and innovative techniques used to convey each artist’s message.

“Each of these quilts is a demonstration of the creativity and artistic talent of its maker,” said Nan Card, curator of manuscripts at the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums. “Infused with vivid colors, a myriad of fabrics and unusual techniques, each quilt holds special meaning for its creator and often provokes thoughtful responses from the viewers.”

This exhibit is produced and distributed by The Dairy Barn Arts Center, Athens, Ohio.

The Dairy Barn Arts Center started in the late 1970s when quilters dedicated to making art quilts found few venues that would accept their work into exhibits and competitions. Traditional quilt shows wanted bedcovers with recognizable quilt patterns and were not interested in these unique quilts.

A group of volunteers in Athens started the Quilt National competition to show the transformation that was happening in the quilting world and to promote quilting as an art form. They began the competition at The Dairy Barn Arts Center, which was a refurbished historic barn.

Some of the quilts featured in the “Quilt National” exhibit use traditional techniques of piecing and patching fabric, but they also use new materials and technology.

Artists strive to make an individual statement while provoking an emotional response for the viewers of their work.

The “Quilt National” exhibit is sponsored by the City of Fremont and Walmart – Fremont, Port Clinton and Tiffin. 

Hayes Presidential Library & Museums members are admitted to this exhibit for free. Admission for non-members is included with the price of a museum ticket: $7.50 for adults, $6.50 for seniors and $3 for kids 6-12.

The Hayes Presidential Library & Museums is America’s first presidential library and is located at Spiegel Grove at the corner of Hayes and Buckland avenues. The facility is affiliated with the Ohio History Connection.

For information, call 419-332-2081, or visit rbhayes.org. Like HPLM on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hayespresidentialcenter and follow on Twitter at @rbhayespres and Instagram at rbhayespres.