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Black Threads: An African American Quilting Sourcebook Hardcover – December 30, 2002
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Extraordinary...an impressive annotated bibliography...recommended --Choice
The first comprehensive guide to Afro-American quilt history and modern practice...a unique and invaluable guide --Midwest Book Review
Comprehensive...an amazing reference book --The Professional Quilter
About the Author
Kyra E. Hicks is a marketing professional and quilter. She was so mesmerized after seeing Eva Ungar Grudin's 1990 exhibition, "Stitching Memories: African-American Story Quilts," that she began to teach herself to create her own quilts. "I found my voice that afternoon in the museum," she remembers. Today, Kyra's quilts have been included in more than forty exhibitions in venues such as the American Craft Museum in New York, the Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C., and the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum in Hartford. She hosts the African American quilting news blog, Black Threads.
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The book istself is extremely well organized, and provides a wealth of detail and resources. Anyone planning to give a lecture or write an article about the history of quiltmaking will find material here that would be very difficult to access otherwise.
This book is also important becasue too many of the other books and articles only focused on the improvisational string quilt or improvisational patchwork quilt, which is only one genre of African American quilt making. Kyra clearly documents that African American quilters worked and continue to create quilts in all forms and genres.
The book has chapters documenting the influence that quilting has had on other artists and art genres as well. One of the remarkable images is that of a quilt designed by Romare Bearden, an internationally known African American artist who is generally known as one of the premier collagists of the 20th Century.
Kyra also conducted extensive online surveys of quilters, and documented very interesting facts about the enormous buying power of African American quilters in the United States. This material alone is worth the price of the book to companies that sell fabric and patterns to the quilt market.
My only regret is that the book had only a few color images. I wish that the publisher would have Kyra create a companion book in color with more of the images of the unique and unusual quilts and lesser known quilters she found.
Finally, the book is a comprehensive reference to galleries and collections for those who wish to explore the owrld of African American quiltmaking further. Buy and keep this book on your shelf--it will be useful and remarkable reading for years to come.