Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Adirondack Museum | Common Threads: 150 Years of Adirondack Quilts & Comforters

Common Threads: 150 Years of Adirondack Quilts & Comforters

"Common Threads" will explore themes of women's work, domestic life, social networks in a rural area, generational continuity among women, and women’s artistic response to life in the Adirondacks.

Quilts and comforters serve as paths to stories of the sort that don’t get recorded in history books.

This is where my 'heirloom" day quilt on display.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Adirondack Museum - More Information

This has become increasingly exciting.  It has been brought to my attention that my uncle's quilt is not just a personal quilt, the quilt has historical significance in the State of New York (where I was born and where the quilt (of course) is from).  I never realized what I had sitting in that old cedar chest all these years.

The exhibit starts on May 25, 2009 and runs through October 2009.  I have been asked to be present for the Opening Day of the exhibit, as it appears my quilt will be the 'mainstay' of the exhibit....excited does not cover the host of feelings I'm having!!! 

I also found out that the Bruno's originated in Canada, and I'm part French-Canadian!

I checked with my father (the quilt belonged to his father's brother) but my father's not sure he remembers much (as he says) after all he is only 92 years young! 

I understand my Aunt Alice (the quilt was made for her father..my great uncle) gave my father a Bible with the family tree.  However, for some [odd] reason my father gave that Bible to my cousin (because he's still a Bruno and since I got married I guess I'm not...LOL), so I'm calling him to see if he still has it...Please keep your fingers crossed!

Here's the latest letter from the curator at the museum:

Dear Paula,

My research and study are really coming together, and it's a great feeling. Your quilt repays plenty of study.

I would like to publish some of my work on it, and would like your permission to do so. The first introduction the public will have to the quilt is in my illustrated presentation which is tentatively titled "Common Threads: Stories Told by Adirondack Quilts." I will be giving that first in Canton, NY, in March as part of an exhibit of other quilts mounted by Traditional Arts in Upstate New York. I'll also be doing the presentation as part of the museum's Monday Evening Lecture series this summer, to a quilt guild in Remsen, a historical society in Thurman, and as part of our Fiber Arts Festival in September.

I'm also re-working the research for articles in Adirondack Life (contracted), Quilter's Newsletter, and Piecework (submissions). I'd also like to submit an article just on this quilt to Uncoverings, which is the Journal of the American Quilt Study Group and the most respected journal in the field. If I present this right, it will really be a contribution to quilt studies. Please let me know if you have any reservations about any of this. And thank you so much for your help this far!

Assuming all this is a "go," would you like me to reference the piece as in a private collection, or to use your name? And if the latter, is "Paula Bruno Zidel" the way you want to be known?
Of course all the questions are not answered....do you know anything about Uncle Joseph's ethnic background? As you probably know, one of the senior state assemblymen in NY is Joe Bruno, who is of Italian heritage. But the Brunos' in the 1900 census for Johnsburg were both from Vermont, with French Canadian parents.

The fun goes on!


Hallie E. Bond, Curator
Adirondack Museum
Blue Mountain Lake, NY