Its always a pleasure when art work can help you to reflect and remember what used to be. My grandmother, Theo Western, had a quilt that I can picture so vividly, that was such a staple in her home. I remember curling up with her on the couch, and be bundled in that quilt. Thinking back on it, feels me with such warmth and comfort but sadness creeps in since my granny has since died, and her quilt, is now misplaced.

Last year I flew to Little Rock, Arkansas, and I feel head over heels for the city. Such a small place with so much history, and surprisingly culture. Just like last year, I had to revisit the Old State Museum, since museums are kinda my thing. In this particular exhibit, “A piece of my Soul” Quilts by Black Arkansans, displayed about ten quilts created by black women who were former slaves, as well as black freed women. The first time I saw this exhibit, tears flowed freely, I felt as close to my grandmother as I had in a long time. It still amazes me, that this simple garment has brought families together, in not just creating together, but in the warmth the quilt provides.

If any, what heirloom is passed down from generation to generation in your family?

Tristan J

Pieces of my Soul

I’m a crybaby, always have been and will continue to be but I don’t normally get emotional at museums. Well, I wished someone would love told me to bring the tissues. Recently I traveled to Little Rock, Arkansas, first stop, Old State House Museum. Perhaps one day I’ll learn to research what’s on display BEFORE I visit but I’ll admit I’m lazy. However I think y’all know that already.

No secret, I love anything black people related. So I damn there bust out in the ugly cry for the A Piece of my Soul: Quilts by Black Arkansans exhibit. I remember being a young girl and snuggling up to the quilt that my grandmother, Theo Western, kept close. If I close my eyes and concentrate I can almost remember every single square. I’m embarrassed that I never inquired about each patch and the significance. My grandmother has since passed but I was able to find pride in her and this exhibit. Fun Fact: Quilts could weight as much as fifty pounds!

The museum has at minimum two hundred Quilts and proceeds to rotate the Quilts so all can be displayed. Yall know I’m super hyped to return. Growing up did you experience the magic of Quilts?

Tristan J