Texas Folklife is hosting a touring exhibition, “Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience.”
Curated by Carolyn Mazloomi, founder of the Women of Color Quilters Network, the exhibition showcases 30 artists’ interpretation of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights. Each artist chose to interpret a different one of the 30 articles of the Declaration, which was drafted in 1948 by committee led by Eleanor Roosevelt. The Declaration affirms an individual’s rights such as freedom of thought, opinion, religion and conscience, word, and peaceful association.
Using a variety of different quiltmaking techniques and styles, the quilts also tackle the parallel injustices currently faced by the African-American community.
“Quilting the World’s Conscience” opens Feb. 21 and continues through May 24 at the Texas Folklife Gallery. The exhibition will be shown in two parts. Fifteen quilts will be on display Feb. 21 through April 8; the show will then rotate to feature the additional 15 quilts through May 24. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Texas Folklife is at 1708 Houston St.
An opening reception features a talk by Mazloomi and some of the artists is 6:30 p.m.Feb. 21. The reception is free, however, RSVP is recommended.
“The arts allow us to articulate and challenge oppressions and expand our imaginations,” says Mazloomi, a nationally recognized leader in the education the public in the styles and techniques of African American quilters. “We quilt our joy, struggles, our concerns and our vision for a brighter future. Furthermore, the freedom to participate in arts and cultural work is itself a human right.”
Mazloomi calls the exhibition a call to action: “The right to experience, develop, and articulate our cultures is a necessary component of realizing the full range of human rights to which we are all entitled by virtue of being human. All people have the right to develop, participate in, and enjoy cultural lives.”
The exhibition follows a book by Mazloomi,“Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium,” that features work by 75 textile artists. It was published in 2018 in honor of the 70th anniversary U.N. Human Rights Declaration