There is another revolution in Russia, and I brought it there. Or here.... as I am there now. Yes the group called Fiber Revolution, which is a group of SAQA artists located in the Northeast, that I belong to, is having it's first Russian exhibit. The exhibit is part of the second biennial Lukomorie Quilt Festival in the city of Gatchina, which is a suburb of St. Petersburg. It's lovely old small city full of small palaces, one big one, a lovely park and one castle, well worth a tourist visit (which I did do last summer). The festival is a huge success here bringing visitors from all over Russia and Ukraine. More about the festival in later posts, now about our exhibit.
We have sixteen participating artists from Fiber Revolution represented at the exhibit. A nice range of techniques and styles for Russian quilters to see. We have been given a large well lit exhibit hall at the local library.
I hung the exhibit on Wednesday morning with the help of two local quilters Ludmila and Marina, and my two girls provided entertainment as my aunt tried to corral them (ahem..).
On Friday afternoon was the scheduled opening. I was a bit disappointed when only a few showed up, but it was nice chatting with those brave souls. But a bit later, as I had been warned, two buses carrying about 60 quilters showed up. They had been bussed around to all the exhibits all day long and I was their last stop. Lucky for me they were still full of energy. There was much excitement in the air and I got backed into a corner as they all grabbed postcards and asked for autographs. Finally the frenzy subdued and I was able to say a few words about Fiber Revolution, SAQA and our work.
The Russian quilters were all quite impressed by the fact that most of our fabrics are hand dyed or painted; by the technological advances that we are privy to (Photoshop and high quality printers are not available to the average middle class Russian), by the variety of threads available to us and by the beautiful evenness of our machine stitching. After all the questions got answered, we had a photo session where they all wanted to have a picture taken with me, luckily in groups...and as quickly as they came in they left, ushered on to their buses. Quite an experience it was....