I’m no quilter, but with grandmothers who had homemade quilting racks hanging from their ceilings, I can appreciate a good carpenter’s star or double wedding ring. Those treasured old patterns, pretty as they are, are blown out of the water by the blankets currently on display in Chandler.
ARTrageous: Art Quilts Year XVIII features about 50 quilts and quilted works inside the gallery at Chandler Center for the Arts. It’s free to go in and take a look.
From the whimsical — Beverly Fizzell’s 43-inch round “Pizza!”, cut into slices and topped with mushrooms, onions, olives, pepperoni and tiny red pepper flakes — to the dark — Lisa Chipetine’s edgy “Hell Hath No Fury Like an Ignored Woman,” with red stitching like a blipping EKG line — they’re something to see, whether you’re young, old, into quilting, or just appreciate the creative use of unconventional materials.
While over-the-top quilts whipped out with the help of machines are nothing new, many of the ARTrageous works retain the special charm of being wrought, to some degree, by hand. Denise A. Currier’s “S.W. Spiny Lizard,” for example, is a fascinating blend of hand-dyed coffee filters and a clothes dryer sheet embellished with colored pencils. You’d never guess, at first look, that those things are in there.
The individual, hand-appliqued feathers of the mother bird in Susan Szajer’s “Conflicted,” in which a nest of eggs sits in the path of licking flames, are something else to appreciate.
ARTrageous: Art Quilts Year XVIII is on display through Jan. 18, 2014. All artworks are accompanied by a story and artist biography. The show is juried by Laurie Fagen, former owner of Chandler’s Art on Boston Gallery.
IF YOU GO
What: ARTrageous: Art Quilts Year XVIII
When: Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays, through Jan. 18, 2014
Where: Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave.
Cost: Free admission
Information: (480) 782-2680 or ChandlerCenter.org