Quilt of the Month


February 2011

February 2011

Yesterday: Civil Rights in the South
Made by Yvonne Wells
Made in Tuscaloosa, AL
Dated 1989
64" x 66.5"
IQSC 2000.004.0142
Yvonne Wells: Quilted Messages Exhibition

This example of artist Yvonne Well's unique story-telling quilts documents dramatic events of the Civil Rights battle of the 1960s. Yesterday: Civil Rights in the South features activist Martin Luther King, Jr. speaking at a podium in the center of the quilt. Around King, Wells portrays harsh imagery, including the violent confrontation between police and activists on the road to Selma, Alabama, the lynching of an African American figure and the bombing of a Alabama church that killed three young girls. Additional images include a black figure seated in the back of a bus, a Confederate flag flying over a domed government building and water fountains labeled "colored" or "white." Wells uses simplified figures and abstract shapes in the uncomfortable images she creates to remind us of this dark period of American history.