I feel like I have been neglecting the amazing male textile enthusiasts.  Like Luke Haynes, whose quilts look more like paintings than textile.  Luke is more interested in the choices we make to express ourselves to the world, which is most apparent in our clothing.  How we dress informs others how we desire to be perceived and treated.  For instance when have we ever seen President Obama in anything other than a suit?  A suit tells the world that Obama is a powerful man, dignified, and means business (the business of running America).

Born and raised in the American South, Luke formally trained in art and architecture at Cooper Union, NY.  However, a magical box of scrap fabric crossed his path and he was forever chained to the possibilities and wonders of quilt experimentation.  ” I can work with disparate pieces of fabric and create a cohesive final product that is greater than the sum of its parts.” – Luke

“Within contemporary quilt making people are exploring ways of using fabric as a medium for both functional quilts as well as wall hangings. The resultant dialogue between quilting as a pastime of assembling purchased fabrics and quilting as a skill of constructing usable objects from unusable cloth reflects a current societal tension.” – Luke

 His most recent works investigate nostalgia and function.  Most of the works are portraits of popular leaders who changed the face of that it means to be an American in some way or another.  Not all of these leaders are President’s as you may think.  Yes, President’s do make public changes to America, but there are really only a handful of Presidents I can even recall doing something truly great for America.  Luke focuses on all aspects of American culture to find it’s really great leaders.  For government isn’t America’s only great achievement. 

Frankie Manning – American choreographer, dancer, and instructor.  Considered to be one of the founders of the Lindy Hop.

Abraham Lincoln – the 16th President of the United States.

Micheal Jackson – The King of Pop.  Guinness World Record’s Most Successful Entertainer of All Time.

I find this series of works interesting because its message correlates with Luke’s objective: to change people’s views on quilting as an art form and as functional material.  Not only is it a commentary on quilting but of textile arts itself.  Textile arts are endangered of becoming a lost art, which is exactly what these contemporary artists are directly addressing.

Luke and his Self Portrait

You can follow Luke on his quilting adventures on his blog.  He is doing amazing things with his craft.  Definitely should be checked out!

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