Episode #23: Modern Patchwork with Denyse Schmidt

One of my artist friends, who moonlights as a custom quilter, likes to call her creations bed paintings. I love this term, and I think it’s an apt description for the work of Denyse Schmidt, my most recent guest on Thread Cult. I’ve admired Denyse’s quilts for years. Her modern take on a very old craft has made her pretty much a rock star in the modern craft movement. However, her work goes beyond craft or “crafting.” Denyse is very much an artist. In fact, I find her work a lot more interesting than most of what I see in big galleries around NYC.

Like most creative people, Denyse’s path has been circuitous. I was tickled to learn that she used to do performance art, took on odd sewing jobs (including stitching ecclesiastical vestments) to pay the bills, and it wasn’t until her 30’s that she really found her passion in patchwork quilting. I love these kinds of stories.

Denyse’s work will be featured in three museum shows this fall,  a two-person show that opens at the National Quilt Museum in Kentucky in October, a group show at the New England Quilt Museum in November, and part of a show at the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts in January. So, if you’re in any of these locales over the coming months, go see her work!

In the meantime, there’s plenty to entice you in this episode. Happy listening!


Gee’s Bend Quilters

Anni Albers

 Interaction of Color app

Denyse’s Florence line of fabric

Denyse Schmidt: Modern Quilts

Denyse Schmidt Quilts

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Outro music: “Cantina Rag” by Jackson F. Smith

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