National Quilt Museum gets stunning US flag

National Quilt Museum gets stunning US flag

Posted: Thursday, April 11, 2013 8:00 pm

An evocative quilt depiction of an embattled American flag by a California woman artist has been added to the permanent collection of The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Ky.
The title is “And Our Flag Was Still There!”
“When my son decided to join the Marines after college, I made this quilt to deal with my emotions,” said Melinda Bula, of El Dorado Hills, Calif. “The image depicts our flag, tattered but still flying above the battlefield, and I lovingly dedicate it to all military families.”
“The flag quilt is having a powerful impact on visitors,” said Frank Bennett, chief executive officer of NQM, the world’s largest museum dedicated exclusively to quilt and fabric art. “It’s pictured as tattered and floating over the battlefield, and I leave my office three or four times a day just to look at it.”
Ms. Bula’s quilt will be seen by a good portion of the 40,000 art-lovers from all 50 states and 45 foreign countries who visit the NQM annually. The art museum has been described by Forbes magazine as “a massive tourist attraction” and compared by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to Chicago art museums. NQM has been featured in articles by The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune and Southern Living magazine, among others.
Opened in 1991, NQM offers the public 27,000-square-foot of the finest quilt and fiber art. Exhibits are changed approximately 10 times a year.
Ms. Bula, who has won numerous awards for her quilts and travels widely in the U.S. and internationally to lecture on quilt art, said, “It’s a painting without any paint, where every color change is another piece of fabric. After the raw-edge fusible applique was completed, I used thread painting to blend the colors.”
Ms. Bula, who began sewing as a young girl, said she always wanted to become an artist and after graduation from college with a degree in art opened a fabric design business. Her wallpaper and fabric designs have graced the covers of Better Homes and Garden and other magazines. She is the author of two books, “Cutting Garden Quilts” and “Candy Cane Lane,” both from Martingale Company.
Ms. Bula said her new flag quilt has generated more interest than any of her previous award-winning works and Bennett says it has “developed a following beyond typical quilting circles as well.”

Published in The Messenger 4.11.13

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