Reflections of the Exotic East | Middle East & North Africa


Hexagon Mosaic
Circa 1870-1890
Possibly made in Pennsylvania
IQSCM 1997.007.0145, Ardis and Robert James Collection

This pattern resembles some of the simpler forms of tilework seen in mosques across Turkey and the Middle East. Hexagon mosaic patterns, first used in English and American quilts in the late 1700s, became popular again after 1850, approximating a fashionable Oriental “look” in home furnishings. Adding to this quilt’s Eastern appearance are two different prints containing exotic birds. One features a bird of paradise and the other a peacock. The birds are cut apart to form the hexagons, and you must visually recreate them by finding their various parts.