Many years ago when AQS started, it was also somewhat connected with the Museum of the American Quilter. Then the Museum became independant, and for a long time I had a VISA card that made donations to the Museum. It was cool, because it was one of the first to have a picture on it...a pineapple quilt!
Just last year another important event took place. This is now the National Quilt Museum!
No government funds provided, of course, but it's such a beautiful place.
Anyone who likes museums will appreciate this one. And although Paducah isn't much on the way to anywhere but St. Louis (travelling from the southeast, I mean) it's worth a stop even when the AQS show is not on. There are always several exhibits, classes, a gift shop to die for (book-wise), and a changing display of quilts from their collection, which is the AQS Best of Shows for many years back. Almost all the winning quilters have acceptred the award money, which is a purchase award so the quilt can belong to the Museum.
I will never forget the photograph of the father talking to his children on the phone...looking at them through the glass of a prison visiting room.
The real treat was that Hollis herself was there to talk with visitors, and we had a good chat. She has such a generous spirit. I have enjoyed hearing her speak several times at the Houston IQA show, and once took a class with her about the business of being an artist.
Hollis is at work coloring some areas to suggest what threads people might like to use...not trying to mark my hand! Everyone who works on the quilt signs their name, too.
If you visit the Museum website (http://www.nationalquiltmuseum.org) before May 25 you will be able to see pictures of the exhibits I have mentioned.
Coming next (because I know you have better things to do than read super-long blog posts!):
What does that AQS show look like?