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Quilts and Textiles

Great Lakes Native Quilting

Click here to see the quilts that are featured in this exhibition.

Great Lakes Native Quilting is the first exhibition devoted to North American Indian quilting in the Great Lakes region. Organized by curator of folk arts Marsha MacDowell, the exhibit grew out of work for the Michigan State University Museum's previous major national research and exhibition project on Native quiltmaking in North America and Hawaii. This exhibit examines the historical introduction of quilting as well as the contemporary use and meaning of quilts made by Oneida, Odawa, Potawatomi, Ojibwa, and Mohawk quiltmakers living in Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, New York, and Ontario. It showcases the diversity of Native quiltmaking and pays tribute to the artists who continue to work in this expressive cultural medium. The sixteen quilts included in the exhibit are primarily drawn from the Michigan State University Museum collection with additional loans from other private and public collections. The exhibit also includes photographs of quilters and quilting activities, biographical sketches of contemporary quilters, explanatory text panels, and four contextual settings which visually demonstrate the uses of quilts in Great Lakes Native communities, both historically and today.


No current bookings. This exhibit is available.

This exhibition has been displayed at the following sites: Crooked Tree Arts Center, Petoskey, MI; Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Indianapolis, IN; Michigan State University Museum, East Lansing, MI; Newaygo County Council for the Arts, Fremont, MI; Sloan Museum, Flint, MI; Kalamazoo Valley Museum, Kalamazoo, MI; Lorenzo Cultural Center, Macomb Community College, Clinton Township, MI; and Ziibiwing Center fro Anishinabe Culture & Lifestyle, Mt. Pleasant, MI.

  Rental Fee:
(12-week period):
$4,500, plus shipping
  Number of pieces: 16
  Running feet required: 850 square feet, plus 200 linear feet of wall space
  Insurance Value: $30,000
  Security requirement: Lockable, limited access display area; trained guards or comparable protection system; provisions to prevent public from touching objects; object handling by museum professionals; temperature and light controls; fire protection according to local ordinances
  Additional materials available: Press materials.

This traveling exhibition is a Michigan State University Museum, Michigan Traditional Arts Program activity supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund, Jeffrey and Kitty Cole, and the MSU Office of the Provost.

Photo of Strawberries and Flowers quilt made by Alice Olsen Williams

PICTURED: Strawberries and Flowers, Alice Olsen Williams (Anishnaabeg), 1991. Cotton
and cotton/polyester fabric with polyester filling.

























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