So, after driving all those miles and seeing all those glorious California things, we arrived in Southern California for the purpose of attending the International Quilt Festival in Long Beach and viewing the 288 little quilts made by the twelve of us who comprise Twelve by Twelve: The International Art Quilt Challenge. Why would we do that? After all, it was essentially the same exhibit I went all the way to Houston to see just 8 months ago, and, in fact, it will be here in Portland in another month.
1. Because being part of the Twelve by Twelve group is one of the best things I've ever done. It is not on the same level as marrying Ray or having kids or things like that, but it is a pretty great thing and I feel extremely lucky and I like to keep that feeling going. I feel lucky when I see my photo with the other Twelves, introducing the exhibit:
4. Because it is thrilling to see how much the people enjoy seeing what we did and hearing our story.
6. Because Del Thomas has been our biggest supporter and generous sponsor. She lives in the area and would be viewing the quilts in person for the first time. I didn't want to miss that! Here she is with us.
7. Because one thing sometimes leads to another, and it happened that Gerrie, Karen and I all had work accepted for another exhibit, called "Rituals" that was showing for the first time in Long Beach. Two other Twelves also have work in this show, Deborah Boschert and Diane Perin Hock. I do think that our experience with our project is leading all of us to other exciting opportunities and challenges. Close up photography was not permitted for the Rituals exhibit, and my long shot isn't great, but you can see better photos on the Dinner at Eight Artists web site.
9. Because it was an opportunity to see more of California.
10. Because I love to travel with Ray.
11. Because I may never have work in an IQF show again!
12. But mostly because the time was right. It was time for one last celebration of this Twelve by Twelve experience. We have written our book, shown our quilts in the biggest venues around the world that exist. We have done something no other group has done and we have grown and flourished and remained friends and we will always be a part of each others' lives. We have done, so, SO much more than we ever dreamed of. Can I feel a little bit proud? I do. Lucky me. Lucky all of us.