Iowa Artisans Gallery hosts 13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, based on a poem of the same name by Wallace Stevens. The exhibit includes thirteen art quilts by eleven members of the Fiber Artists Coalition and runs April 22 – May 29, 2011.


The Fiber Artists Coalition is made up of Professional Artist Members of Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) from the upper Midwest. FAC curates traveling exhibits of its members' works. Members employ a variety of innovative materials and techniques in the creation of fiber art with a contemporary edge. Some members have published books about their artistic processes and are in demand as teachers and presenters. Many exhibit their work in juried group and solo exhibitions within and beyond the U.S. The eleven members whose works are included in this show are  Astrid Hilger Bennett, Kathie Briggs, Shelley Brucar, Cheryl Dineen Ferrin, Clairan Ferrono, Peg Keeney, Pat Kroth, Casey Puetz, Joan Potter Thomas, Laura Wasilowski, and Trish Williams.

The Studio Art Quilt Associates, Inc. (SAQA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote the art quilt through education, exhibitions, professional development and documentation. Visit the Studio Art Quilt Associates’ website. Learn more about the Fiber Artists Coalition and visit its blog.

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, by Wallace Stevens

Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the blackbird.

II
I was of three minds,
Like a tree
In which there are three blackbirds.

III
The blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime.

IV
A man and a woman
Are one.
A man and a woman and a blackbird
Are one.

V
I do not know which to prefer,
The beauty of inflections
Or the beauty of innuendoes,
The blackbird whistling
Or just after.

VI
Icicles filled the long window
With barbaric glass.
The shadow of the blackbird
Crossed it, to and fro.
The mood
Traced in the shadow
An indecipherable cause.

VII
O thin men of Haddam,
Why do you imagine golden birds?
Do you not see how the blackbird
Walks around the feet
Of the women about you?

VIII
I know noble accents
And lucid, inescapable rhythms;
But I know, too,
That the blackbird is involved
In what I know.

IX
When the blackbird flew out of sight,
It marked the edge
Of one of many circles.

X
At the sight of blackbirds
Flying in a green light,
Even the bawds of euphony
Would cry out sharply.

XI
He rode over Connecticut
In a glass coach.
Once, a fear pierced him,
In that he mistook
The shadow of his equipage
For blackbirds.

XII
The river is moving.
The blackbird must be flying.

XIII
It was evening all afternoon.
It was snowing
And it was going to snow.
The blackbird sat
In the cedar-limbs.

 

Joan Potter Thomas, The River, 44" x 22"
Shelley Brucar, Interesting Color for a Blackbird, 36"x22"
Kathie Briggs, On November Winds, 17.5" X 23.5"
Clairan Ferrono, Eye of the Blackbird, 37"x12"
Trish Williams, Where Two or More, 24"x35"
Astrid Hilger Bennett, The Beauty of Innuendo, 60”x38”
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