about the artist

You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist

…Indira Gandhi

I am part of a group, Fiber Artists for Obama. We made this group quilt when he was running for president. It has been appraised for over $5000. It is now traveling in a show with other Obama quilts and is in a book edited by Carolyn Mazloomi which will be available soon.

We are now launching a show about racism and are doing a group quilt with this theme. I made the above block for the quilt. We  have an amazing quilter in Alaska, Maria Shell, who put together our last quilt and did all the quilting.

You may remember that Diane Hock made a quilt for the Twelve X Twelve quilt using organza hands — twelve of them to represent the twelve of us. You can see it here. I loved it and filed the idea away and thought it would work well for what I wanted to do for the racism quilt – a positive graphic of hands of all colors outstretched.

I did about 3 of these and they just didn’t look right. Once they were fused, they were really wonky.  I finally realized that I needed a six pointed pattern to help me line them up. So I drew this with my trusty compass.

See, high school geometry can come in handy.

8 Responses to “You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist”

  1. Diane says:

    Gerrie, I cruised by this in a hurry the other day but wanted to come back and tell you that I really like how this looks! Seems like a great response to this topic. And thanks for referencing my organza hands — glad they inspired you! The organza skin colors look perfect on this.

  2. Kristin L says:

    OMG, the accuracy! That is so unlike you, but, the block reads perfectly. A great illustration of the concept. Best of luck with teh group quilt — I imagine it will be wonderful.

  3. Hi Gerrie,
    What a wonderful block! I especially like the way all the fingers blend together in the center. Very nice!

  4. jenclair says:

    Wonderful quote! Love your block!

  5. Judy says:

    love, love, love the quote! It seems especially meaningful after last weekend’s Tea Party thingy. I could let myself get very upset about it, but then I think about unclenching my fists, and I feel better.

    time to go dye something!


  6. allison says:

    love it!

  7. Like the hands but am curious. Is this about overcoming racism or the problem of racism, two very different ideas. I’m assuming it is the former.

  8. Janice says:

    That was the best part of geometry, making shapes with rulers and compasses. Love the idea of the hands.