Swaps and Challenges

Amish: The Modern Muse – Call for Entries

Amish: The Modern Muse

Location: FiberSpace at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles

Three Bay Area Modern Quilts Guilds, East Bay Modern, Bay Area Modern and South Bay Area Modern, have been invited to participate in a new community exhibition program designed to showcase local quilt makers and fiber artists. FiberSpace at the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles is an exhibition platform where the Museum provides gallery space and community members provide the work and resources to mount a professional exhibit. Members of the three Modern Quilt Guilds are collaborating to organize the juried exhibition Amish: The Modern Muse, which will coincide with the Museum exhibition of Antique Ohio Amish Quilts: The Darwin D. Bearley Collection.

Amish are well known for their distinctive quality and style in their quilt making. Their use of solid fabric, color, and design display a unique artistic expression from women of the Amish while still maintaining their core values of humility and community. We invite members of the three guilds to participate in this FiberSpace program at SJMQT and share their works inspired by Amish quilts.

The juror will select approximately 20-40 quilts to form a cohesive exhibition that includes a wide range of creative styles, techniques and imagery.

Juror: Joe Cunningham

Joe Cunningham began making quilts professionally in 1979, after a ten-year career as a musician in Michigan. His early mentors were steeped in the history and traditions of quilts, leading Cunningham to a life of study in quilt history and a love of traditional technique. Over the years his quilts have evolved into a unique, personal style. His quilts are in the permanent collections of museums, as well as in numerous private collections. Cunningham’s 11 books on quilts include the 2010 book “Men and the Art of Quiltmaking,” (the first book on the subject), a museum catalogue for the Shelburne Museum’s exhibition, “Man-Made Quilts: Civil War to the Present,” and his essay for the de Young Museum show “Amish Abstractions: Quilts from the Collection of Faith and Stephen Brown.” His column for the national magazine The Quilt Life is called “Biased and Edgy.” He has been seen on the Peabody Award winning PBS series “Craft in America,” the HGTV series “Simply Quilts with Alex Anderson”, the PBS series “Sewing with Nancy” and on “The Quilt Show” with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims.” He gives talks about quilts and teaches workshops nationwide.


One person from each guild will be designated to help curate the exhibit. They will be required to be present at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles on November 10th and/or 11th to hang the show.

Eligibility and Guidelines

  • Artist must be a member of one of the invited quilt guilds.
  • Consideration is by physical representation only.
  • Due to size and exhibition limitations at the confirmed venues, each quilt shall be no larger than 104 inches on any one side.
  • Quilts do not have to be created specifically for this exhibit. Previously published quilts will be considered.
  • All accepted entries must have a 4 inch finished sleeve sewn onto the back of the quilt along the top edge.
  • Artwork must meet the definition of a quilt: Consisting of a front and back with stitching to hold batting sandwiched in between and bound entirely.
  • A representative from each guild will be chosen to transport quilts to be juried, to be hung for the show, and to return quilts when the show is over. Artists are responsible for getting the quilts to the appropriate guild representer for jurying and to the show, if accepted.
  • SJMQT will arrange to insure the quilts during the exhibition.
  • Artwork MAY be for sale. SJMQT will charge a 50% commission on all sales.
  • Work MUST be available through January 2015. Once work is accepted, it cannot be withdrawn for any reason until the end of the show.
  • By submitting your work for consideration, you confirm that you will adhere to all the Guidelines above.


  • July 1, 2014 – Announce Call for Entries
  • September 1, 2014 – Online Submissions OPENS
  • September 30, 2014 – Online Submissions DEADLINE at 11:59 pm EST
  • October 1, 2014 – Artwork to be RECEIVED by guild representer (details to be given
  • upon submitting online)
  • October 13, 2014 – Notification of acceptance (All notifications will be sent by email)
  • November 15, 2014 – Exhibit opening at SJMQT
  • January 3, 2015 – Exhibit closed at SJMQT
  • January 2015 – Return of work to Artists (guild specific information details to be given)


Checklist of what you will need to provide:
Artist Information:
Artist’s First Name:
Artist’s Last Name:
Address (street):
City/Postal Code/Country:
Phone (include country code):

Information about each piece:
Name (Specify if more than one person worked on it):
Size: height x width, in inches
Techniques/ Inspiration (25 words or less):
Insurance Value:
Sale Price or if NFS:

There is an entry fee per quilt for consideration. Members must pay their fees through their guild’s structure. The entry fee is $35 for the first quilt, and free for a second quilt.

You will be asked to agree with these Terms and Conditions:

If accepted in this call for consideration I agree to submit a quilt for the exhibition “Amish: The Modern Muse” and follow the size guidelines set forth in this call for entries. I agree to loan my quilt to The San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles. I further agree to permit the images or detail images and/or all of part of my artist statement to be used in the exhibition catalog, articles, ads, promotions, books, websites, blogs CDs, current event news coverage, television productions, and/or multi-media productions for and about the exhibit or for and about the shows at which the exhibit may be seen.

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