chakra

Radiant Light Quilt in Quilts and Health

Quilts and Health is a newly published book exploring the connection between textiles and health.

The authors are:

  • Marsha MacDowell, professor of art at Michigan State University Museum
  • Clare Luz assistant professor, Department of Family Medicine at Michigan State University
  • Beth Donaldson, Digital Humanities Project Asset Coordinator at Michigan State University.

Quilts and Health book by Marsha MacDowell, Clare Lug and Beth Donaldson with radiant light quilt by doris lovadina-lee toronto quilter

These three authors have written a scholarly book that is beautifully illustrated with hundreds of quilts as well as the stories behind them. Through their research they discovered that they could not name a disease that could not be connected to a quilt. Quilts are given as to comfort and memorialize those suffering from so many diseases. The AIDS Memorial quilt is an iconic example.

Radiant Light chakra quilt by doris lovadina-lee toronto artist in book quilts and health

I am thrilled that my quilt: Radiant Light is included in this book.

My quilt appears in chapter three: Individual Experiences of Health and Well-being Through Quiltmaking. Radiant Light is the third in a series of chakra quilts. The first was made for my sister-in-law who was diagnosed with cancer. The second quilt was made as a commission for someone who had seen my first one and had survived this disease. I have since made a fourth quilt: The Vibrant Path.

Quilts and health table of contents with Radiant light quilt by doris lovadina-lee toronto quilter

Excited to see my name and Sandy’s name in the index!

index page quilts and health doris lovadina-lee and sandy lindal

Radiant Light is an original design. The background is pieced as are the leaves. The outline of the woman and the chakras are appliqued. The quilt was beautifully long-arm quilted by Sandy Lindal of Scrappy Gal Quilt Co.

Artist Statement submitted to the Sacred Threads Exhibition:
This quilt embodies the divine life force in women. Chakra centers correspond to seven centers of energy in the human body. These spiraling wheels of vibrational energy channel power into and out of the body. When this vital energy flows easily, we remain in physical, spiritual and emotional alignment. The portrayal of the chakras superimposed on a female figure honours this divine/vital/transformative power. This quilt is a reminder to us all to be nurturing of ourselves, to be present in the moment, and to be in tune with the creative life force within us.

Radiant light art quilt by doris lovadina-lee toronto artist

Radiant Light was accepted and displayed at the Sacred Threads Exhibition 2013. It was purchased by a health professional and is currently on display in their offices. I can’t think of a better location for Radiant Light.

Small Vibrant Path

My son’s last school art project involved selecting a Canadian artist and creating a piece based on their style. My son chose me!

The Vibrant path quilt original artwork gabriel based on doris lovadina-lee's quilt
Small Vibrant Path project by Gabriel Lee

He spent some time looking at the photos on my blog and selected The Vibrant Path. I was very pleased and surprised! He very carefully drew out his design in pencil and then coloured it in with pencil crayons.

art project by Gabriel lee based on the Vibrant Path quilt by doris lovadina-lee toronto quilter
Small Vibrant Path by Gabriel Lee

He also researched the artist and wrote a couple of paragraphs describing their work and some background information.

Small Vibrant Path description of Gabriel Lee's artwork
Small Vibrant Path description

I blogged about The Vibrant Path last year. Have a look at both pieces.

The Vibrant Path chakra quilt

The Vibrant Path

This is the finished piece I submitted to the Sacred Threads Exhibition. It’s a chakra quilt based on the Kundalini serpent design. Kundalini is a Sanskrit word describing the life force or spiritual energy that resides in the body. I’ve been exploring the ideas of balance in our lives or more likely, imbalance in our lives! The Kundalini serpent represents the seven energy centres (chakras) awakening, rising up, activating each in turn until a whole, healthy and balanced state is achieved.

chakra art quilt the Vibrant Path by doris lovadina-lee toronto ontario canada quilter
The Vibrant Path by Doris Lovadina-Lee

This is a juried exhibition, so I won’t know until the end of April whether this quilt has been accepted. Below is a detail of the Throat Chakra, it is said to be located in the throat area and deals with communication, self-expression and the truth.detail of throat chakra in art quilt Vibrant Path detail by dorislovadinalee toronto artist

The Vibrant Path detail

All of the fabric is hand dyed, including the background. I followed the information on Robin Ferrier’s blog on flat dyeing.

wing detail of kundalini chakra quilt by doris lovadina-lee quilter toronto canada
The Vibrant Path wing detail

The top is a combination of raw edge appliqué – the wings and serpent, and satin stitched appliqué – the chakras. The quilt is machine quilted with a walking foot.

I encourage you to have a look at the Sacred Threads Exhibition website, they have a gallery of works from previous years along with the artists’ statements.

 

Chakra quilt with hand dyed fabric

I dyed a piece of Hoffman PFD (prepared for dyeing) fabric for a whole cloth quilt. This is a very good quality cotton with a lovely hand. The fabric was laid flat on a large table on top of a sheet of plastic. Each of the colours was mixed, and applied individually onto the wet cloth. Another sheet of plastic was laid on top and I used a paint roller to spread the dye into the cloth.

Chakra quilt by doris lovadina-lee with hand dyed whole cloth fabric
Whole cloth dyed the colours of the chakras

I left the fabric to cure overnight, then I rinsed it out, washed it and am happy with the results. Each of the seven colours on the cloth correspond to one of the seven chakras.

Hand dyed whole cloth for vibrant path chakra quilt dorislovadinalee canadian quilter
Chakra appliqués pinned to hand dyed whole cloth

The chakra symbols are constructed from two or more shades of hand dyed cottons. They pieces are cut, fused and satin stitched to the darker piece of fabric by Carol Bryer Fallaert. This fabric by Benartex is called Glacier Park, it is a beautiful deep purple that looks almost black. The kundalini serpent below is also made with this gorgeous fabric.

kundalini serepent on Hand dyed whole cloth for chakra quilt by doris lee toronto ontario quilter
Kundalini serpent appliquéd to hand dyed whole cloth

This quilt will be the fourth in a series of quilts I’ve created based on the chakra symbols.

applique chakras on kundalini serpent quilt hand dyed by doris lovadina artist
Appliques pinned to hand dyed whole cloth

I hope to enter this piece into the Sacred Threads Exhibition this year. This exhibition occurs every two years and features quilts that are based on “Expressions of Joy, Spirituality, Inspiration, Grief, Healing and Peace/Brotherhood”.  My quilt, Radiant Light was accepted into the exhibition in 2013. You can see it as well as a selection of other beautiful and inspirational quilts in the Sacred Threads gallery, as well as the first three of my chakra quilts on my website.

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