What Next?

With very little stitching left on the new quilt, which is being photographed Monday (that’s one in January, one in February people…don’t expect that level of crazy to continue), I’m already looking forward to the next quilt. Except it’s supposed to relate to a larger piece of mine. And I’m sure some of the artists, maybe the painters, can do two pieces in a month, but I can’t, certainly not while teaching at the same time. Then the show is about feminism, or at least the things listed on the prospectus, which leaves it pretty wide open: sexism, body image, class, race, family, gender politics, biology, history, etc. But I have a ton of my newer quilts out traveling or already promised to shows. Or they’ve been entered in shows and I won’t hear until too late if they got in or not. So I can’t base a new small quilt on a piece that might not be here for the exhibit.

So I started making a list of what was available. Like Tsunami

Nida003 copy small

I do love this quilt, but it’s more of an Earth Mother quilt. I have lots of those. And I don’t know if that’s got anything to do with feminism, except that we have a history of earth as mother, which probably leads into the female as caretaker…not just of the world, but of children and husbands and houses and food. But I think I’m pushing it with that. And I’m not getting a hit for a smaller quilt that goes with that idea.

Then there’s Spread Out on the Pavement

Nida009 copy small

Made it into Quilt National. Funny I really don’t like this quilt. Seriously. I originally drew the body, head and part of the car back in 2002, as my marriage was dissolving. Then I pulled it out 10 years later, finally able to process it, and added the rest of the truck (now it was a truck) and the eyeball tree. It has all the things that are supposed to make you feel better: meds, chicken soup. It’s not a happy quilt. Which isn’t the problem. It’s about a failed relationship. I have lots of quilts about that shit and I don’t really want to dwell on it right now. And I guess it’s gender politics, but it’s not speaking to me.

Then there’s this one…One of My Kind

NidaOneofMyKind small

I love this quilt. This is four generations of women in my family (plus the boychild, who loves that his naked ass is up there). This is all the connections and history of being a single mom, my mom holding all the things she taught me, my grandmother, long dead, her bones still in me, still part of me. Not all good, of course…she had some crazy ideas about race and my daughter’s name that kind of drove me nuts, but isn’t that how you decide who and how to be? Based on not only the good stuff you saw growing up in your family, but also the bad stuff. Stuff to avoid. My daughter mentioned something about how I had reacted to something my parents had pushed when I was younger, how they dealt with my college choices versus how I dealt with my own children’s choices. We learn from the shit we don’t like as much as from the shit we do like.

It’s a powerful quilt…that’s never gotten into any show but the one it’s in now, the one I put it in. Totally feminist. No problem. Easily could do a smaller quilt related to this. But it’s HUGE. And if there are going to be lots of other people in this show, I don’t know if I can get away with such a large piece. I’m debating emailing the curators about it. Because there are other choices. The other issue is that a lot of the people in this group have already seen the piece in the Grossmont show. In fact, about three of the pieces I thought about for this exhibit are hanging in Grossmont right now, so maybe they should just be out of play.

This is Here…it’s actually the first one I thought of…


But I have shitty pictures of it. Wonder if I should rephotograph. This one is old. It’s about being female, but mostly about breast cancer. A friend was dealing with treatments and this came out of me. I already have an idea for a smaller version of this, and it does apply to body image and biology, so it’s an easy fit. It’s also a smaller quilt. So…we’ll see.

I also considered this one, So Deep, So Wide

So Deep So Wide 004 small

But the feminist link is sketchy. And there are other reasons I don’t want to use it.

And this one, Held Hostage…which needs new photography.


And is all about the biology but doesn’t even have a uterus.

And High Tide…about being a single mom…


But not really what I want.

So I’m down to two possibilities. Emailing the curators now. That might just make the decision for me.

Then I can draw. But I need to do a bunch of schoolwork first. Heinously behind in grading. It’s a gorgeous day. Gonna sit inside and stare at a computer screen. Not by choice. It just has to be done. But at least I’ve worked my brain around this new quilt a little bit.

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