I was so excited to see that the Gee's Bend Quilts exhibit was coming to Michigan last fall and added the date to my calendar right away. It wasn't until I was browsing the Flint Institute of Art's website two weeks ago that I saw that they were offering improvisational workshops with the artists. I called the museum right away and was got the last spot in the Sunday workshop (talk about perfect timing!).
The workshop was totally laid back and our only assignment was to select some fabric donated by the Goodwill and get to work. The ladies from Gee's Bend walked around from table to table and gave us encouraging praise and practical tips for handsewing and we got to soak up their talent and listen to their personal histories with quilting. The greatest piece of advice that I took away from the afternoon was to stop self-editing and judging my work and to just go with the flow. It was such a valuable lesson!
The ladies ended the afternoon by singing together and leading us in a group prayer. It was such a powerful moment. I'm so glad that I was able to meet these women in person!
Here's my flickr set with the rest of the photos from the day.
And here's a link to another improvisational quilting exhibit I saw a few years ago.