Thank you for the nice words in the last post about my decision to enter quilt shows this coming year. This turned my mind towards the subject of “quilt show judging.”
I think it is easier to not put yourself or your work out there- open to critique, etc. So why do we do it? I think most show their work to share with others, also to improve their skills with judge’s comments. Well meaning feedback can instructive, after all.
But sometimes judge’s critique can be absurd. Heck, I’ve already experienced the joy of stupid judge comments. It was that Islamic art quilt I did last year. Lots of original and innovative quilting- the quilt was filled with my quilting designs. All overlooked by the judge, who focused on the fact that why wasn’t the small panel “outline stitched?” (I had instead quilted a very cool Islamic tracery texture) Knock-knock, Judge…. it was an art quilt!
The client and I had a good laugh about this later- and agreed it would be the equivalent of having a asian quilt and the judge asking why wasn’t there bamboo quilted in the borders? The judge didn’t “get me” with the quilting and understand that I did not want to quilt the expected. I like to quilt “out of the box” quilting and not quilt what most quilters would have quilted. Especially when it was for an art quilt!
This is the case of the judge imposing their own subjective opinion onto a quilt. The judge expected and wanted to see it done a certain way- and when they didn’t, they marked the quilt down.
I believe that Quilt Show judges should spend time learning the ins and outs of machine quilting more thoroughly. For me, the quilting can make or break a quilt. I would expect a judge to know when the quilting design is original versus a stencil or panto or even a computerized design.
This is my opinion on the matter. I love to have different viewpoints provided in the comments section. On my blog, every opinion is valued, even when it is different from my own. So, your turn… what do you think about this topic?