The Quilt as Art: Creating Movement and Depth

Rachel Derstine Designs

January 15-April 11, 2020 (provided the MHC is open–see our homepage for updates)

We’re pleased to present this show of Rachel Derstine’s bold and imaginative quilted art. Previously of Schwenksville, now of Philadelphia, Rachel has done commissioned works for Salford Mennonite Church, Souderton Mennonite Homes, the Hershey Medical Center, and private collections. Her work has appeared, and received awards, in various solo and juried shows since 2011. Her combinations of color, design and texture are often stunning, sometimes subtle. Some pieces will be available for purchase.

Artist Statement from her website:

Having spent my first 15 years in Japan as a child of missionaries, I find myself drawn to images and art reflecting Japanese ideals. I have lately been collecting images of “washitsu” – Japanese style rooms which look out onto lovely outdoor gardens. These portray the peaceful safety of the indoors but also the opportunity to gaze toward the lovely outdoor landscape.

My “Window” series is about interior and exterior, the safety of being unexposed or hidden and the risk of being exposed and vulnerable. My art is an exploration of my world and my experience of trying to find a place of belonging. What are the costs of remaining in the safety of isolation? What do I learn from stepping out and allowing myself to be vulnerable? I obsess about this… I tend to over analyze my interactions with people and worry what they think of me, experiencing frustration that I can’t get beyond it.

I primarily use hand dyed or painted cottons, silks and non wovens but also have a love of Asian fabrics and kimono silks, incorporating these ancient traditional fabrics into my compositions. Use of sheers, couching and color values give a sense of depth and texture. Slightly curving lines portray gracefulness and circles are often present representing wholeness and creativity.