A Common Thread

Three years ago I decided I wanted to make a clay quilt, but I wasn't quite sure what I wanted that quilt to look like. During those years I traveled across Appalachia and really fell in love with the people and the land here. This love gave birth to the Dirt Project. I grew up here, but I never fully appreciated it until I started traveling. I decided this year that my clay quilt would celebrate Appalachia; that it would be our community quilt. 

Traditionally a community quilt is made by a group of people trading quilt blocks back and forth and then sewing them all together to make the full quilt. My community quilt is a little different, instead of fabric being traded around, my quilt uses stories and dirt. I’ve asked people for stories about their connections to the land, and then ask for a bit of the dirt from that land. I then take the dirt and use it as paint to decorate the clay pieces that build up the quilt blocks. Each block has been inspired by a different story, and everybody's dirt is incorporated into all the blocks in this project. 

My hope with this ongoing project is to chronicle as much of Appalachia as I can. I want to give us something to celebrate, that unites us together. Thank you to everybody who has been a part of this project, this art is more than mine. It’s everybodies!