QuiltCon Reality Check
It’s that time of the year again when the modern quilting debate roars to life via the acceptance and rejection letters for the Modern Quilt Guild show, QuiltCon. To be honest, I’m just all pretty bored with the whole conversation. I don’t say that with disgust, apathy if anything, but maybe some confusion as to why we are all still so caught up in the throes of relying on others for our own quilt-worth? “Oh yes, that’s easy for you to say, Molli! Your No Value Does Not Equal Free quilt was accepted into QuiltCon. How’s that supposed to make me feel, bitch!?” Simmer down, my precious quilt princess. You’re right, it is a bit hypocritical for me to sit here and talk about how acceptance into a show is irrelevant, when I’ve been accepted into that very same show. I get it. And yet, I don’t.
I made the first blocks for my quilt in August 2013, and it will be February 2016 before it hits QuiltCon, two and half years later. This is my first entry, and hell, I only became a member of the MQG about a month before the entry deadline. Not for a single moment of time has having a quilt shown at QuiltCon, or any quilt show for that matter, influenced how I make, or what I make. My style hasn’t become more modern simply to fit prescribed moulds of another group. (If you are doing this, you are not being true to yourself, so stop it!) Being part of QuiltCon hasn’t made my quilt any better, or any worse than it was the day before it was accepted. It will give my quilt a bigger audience, although, one could argue that you don’t really get a bigger potential audience than this little place we call the Internet. So I say all this because you need to know that if you love your quilt, then love it. Love it sick. Tell the world how incredibly awesome it is, and how you’re hot shit for making it, regardless of any acceptance or rejection letter. Those letters will always come, the sting will wear off, so just remember they do not define you, or your quilt. You’re better than that!
Oh, and let’s leave the Modern Quilt Guild alone regarding what qualifies as “modern,” please? Every serious art movement has a style guide (or rules as some of the more cynical amongst us imply), and that’s just art. Just art. And shouldn’t we be ecstatic that our passion, our driving creative force, is being elevated to a finer art? I certainly am, but I’ll love all my quilts despite any category I, or anyone else, chooses to put them in. So congratulations to all those who will have more eyes on their quilts at QuiltCon, and congratulations to all those who will be wrapping their loved ones up in quilts at home. They’re all fabulous, just the same!