C o m m o t i o n : A contemporary textile art show by the SAQA Atlantic Canada Region – Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design

C o m m o t i o n : A contemporary textile art show by the SAQA Atlantic Canada Region

Studio Art Quilt Associates, Inc. (SAQA) is a worldwide non-profit organization whose mission is to promote the art quilt: “a creative visual work that is layered and stitched or that references this form of stitched layered structure.”  The goal of establishing a place for art quilts in the world of contemporary art is pursued by mounting exhibitions, publishing books, and maintaining a wide-ranging online presence.  

This regional SAQA exhibition is produced by the SAQA Atlantic Canada chapter. The organizers are Hélène Blanchet and Regina Marzlin. The show consists of 27 textile art pieces made by 16 artists.  

The “Commotion” exhibition invites viewers to enjoy a diversity of pieces with an interesting and unusual use of fabric in the broadest sense. The contemporary textile art pieces interpret the theme “Commotion” in a wide range of styles and techniques; from abstract to pictorial, from monochromatic to colorful. The masterful use of luscious texture, sophisticated colour, and clever manipulation through fabric surface design are just a few of the defining elements of a fascinating medium that is increasingly popular and becoming more and more accepted by the general art world. 

The show was juried by Lee Cripps, the current curator and artistic director of the Craig Gallery in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada, and a professional artist whose medium is paint. Lee holds an MFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design.  

Lee commented about her jurying decisions: “I tried to create diversity in colour, skill and artistic expression in relation to theme. What a tough choice!! There were such great submissions. […] I did enjoy the pieces that I felt expressed a great sense of energy and which evoked a strong emotional response”. 

Exhibition concept: 

“In these turbulent times, many of us are reeling from the commotion that surrounds us – be it political, environmental, or personal. The artist might evoke a riot of colour, textures, or forms. Commotion can be noise, mayhem, and upheaval, but it can also be children’s vitality that brings joy, the hurly-burly of a busy city street, or even the clamor of a symphony getting ready to play. 

What does the idea of “Commotion” mean to you? Is it loud and overwhelming? Pandemonium or turmoil? Or exciting, lively, and full of unexpected delights? Show us how you react to the idea of commotion.” 

 The show will travel until June 2023, with the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design, 322 Charlotte St, Sydney, Nova Scotia as the premiere venue.