Michigan Quilt Project
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The Cuesta Benberry Quilt and Ephemera Collection

Embroidered Wall Quilt
Amanda Norris
Chattanooga, Tennessee
1982
Cotton
20” x 20”
MSUM 2008:119.26, Gift of George Benberry
Photo by Pearl Yee Wong, all rights reserved Michigan StateUniversity Museum

Cuesta Benberry wrote: "When Bets Ramsey worked with the "Senior Neighbors" in Chattanooga, many of her black clients were interested in quiltmaking. Some were experienced quilters, having made quilts since childhood. Others were introduced to quiltmakng by Bets. Amanda Norris was one of the Senior Neighbors. After Amanda Norris died, Bets gave this crewel type embroidery quilt of Amanda Norris to me. I met Amanda once when I was visiting Chattanooga. Also Amanda Norris quilted for a mutual friend, Dorothy Nelle Sanders, who had and "Amanda Norris quilted-quilt" in my exhibition, "Always There: the African American Presence in American Quilts."

This piece reflects an artist's approach to design, color, and execution of stitches. The maker disregarded "conventional" designs and "did her own thing," allowing the thread to meander over the surface of the fabric.


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