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All of the quilts that we sell are unconditionally guaranteed to be authentic. All restorations are noted. We always have many more quilts in stock and can fill your special request. Shelly purchases only extraordinary quilts in excellent condition.

Please e-mail Shelly if you have quilts that you are interested in selling. Shelly also takes special quilts on consignment to be sold. Please email Shelly for more information if you interested in consigning a quilt.

 

Condition Listings


Mint: Quilt is unwashed, like new condition. No stains, holes, color fading, or wear. No restorations or repairs. All seams and stitching intact. No batting shift noted.

Excellent: Quilt has never been washed. May have minimal fading or staining. No holes or tears. All stitching and seams are intact. May have some batting shift.

Good: Quilt may have been washed. May have some fading, staining, or discoloration. May have some age appropriate wear to fabric or binding. May have been repaired or restored. May have some loose stitching or open seams. May have a batting shift.

Fair: Quilt has been washed. May have fading, wear, and or staining. May have a small tear or hole. May have loose stitching or open seams. Batting may be shifted or exposed.

Poor: Obvious wear, staining, and or fading noted. May have tears, holes, or fraying. Loose stitching and or open seams may be present.

Quilts for Sale

Last group of Gee's Bend Area Quilts from a private collector (2018)

This is your opportunity to own one of the treasures from the amazing quiltmakers from Gee's Bend area. They have not been offered publicly until now.

This group of quilts was purchased by a private collector from the women of the Gee's Bend area through Bill Arnett more than fifteen years ago. This same collector has also assembled and donated a significant folkart collection to his local art museum, where he has been actively involved for many years. These quilts represent the work of most of the well-known quiltmakers and some of their families. Many of the quilts were made early in their careers.

"...Some of the most miraculous works of modern art America has produced. Imagine Matisse and Klee (if you think I'm wildly exaggerating, see the show) arising not from rarefied Europe, but from the caramel soil of the rural South in the form of women, descendants of slaves when Gee's Bend was a plantation. These women, closely bound by family and custom (many Benders bear the slaveowner's name, Pettway), spent their precious spare time -- while not rearing children, chopping wood, hauling water and plowing fields -- splicing scraps of old cloth to make robust objects of amazingly refined, eccentric abstract designs. The best of these designs, unusually minimalist and spare, are so eye-poppingly gorgeous that it's hard to know how to begin to account for them. But then, good art can never be fully accounted for, just described."

Michael Kimmelman (New York Times November 29, 2002)

Quilts in this Collection:


Road to California
Blocks
Drunkard Path
Crystals
Floating Blocks
Bag Quilt
Sunflowers
Rolling Star Quilt
Heart to Heart
Ain't Deuce + a Quarter
2-Sided Quilt
Job's Tears
Yin Yang

 

May 22 - September 23, 2018
The Metropolitan Museum of Art


History Refused to Die, an exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, will feature a selection of the renowned quilts from Gee's Bend, Alabama, by quilters such as Annie Mae Young (1928-2012), Lucy Mingo (born 1931), Loretta Pettway (born 1942), and additional members of the extended Pettway family. Among other accomplished artists to be featured are Nellie Mae Rowe (1900-1982), Lonnie Holley (born 1950), and Ronald Lockett (1965-1988), and Thornton Dial (1928-2016), whose monumental assemblage from 2004 provides the exhibition's title.

Find out more about this exhibition...

 

The future of Bill Arnett's Gee's Bend Quilt Collection

This is an extract from the Recognition: Souls Grown Deep is Collaborating with Museums on Acquisitions of Art by African Americans From the South article. Read full article here.

Soon, the galleries at the de Young Museum in San Francisco will echo the American South. Works by African American contemporary artists from Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, Mississippi, and Florida will be presented in six spaces at the museum where the institution's permanent collection is usually on view. ...

Revelations: Art from the African American South will present works spanning paintings, sculptures, drawings, and quilts, by Dial, Young, Minter, Bessie Harvey, Lonnie Holley, Ronald Lockett, Jessie T. Pettway, Mose Tolliver, and Annie Mae Young, among others. The exhibition opens June 3, 2018.

The exhibition announcement coincided with a groundbreaking acquisition. The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco is bringing into its collection 62 works by 22 African American artists from the South. The acquisition was achieved through a combination purchase by the museums and gift from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation in Atlanta. ...

"As an advocate for these artists and their enduring legacies, our partnerships with major American museums are critical to ensuring that their contributions are woven into the greater narrative of art in America," said Maxwell L. Anderson, who was named president of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation in June 2016.

The San Francisco museums acquisition marks the beginning of an ambitious strategy by Souls Grown Deep to place works from its collection in leading American and international art museums with the goal of transforming the representation of African American artists from the South in the art historical canon.

Established by William S. Arnett in 2010, Souls Grown Deep describes itself as "the only non-profit organization dedicated to documenting, preserving, exhibiting and promoting the work of contemporary African American artists from the American South." The foundation says there are more than 1,200 works by 160 artists in its collection.

Arnett began focusing on art by blacks in the South in the mid-1980s. He traversed the region, seeking out, befriending, and serving as a patron to a variety of artists who had no formal training but expressed their views and conveyed their experiences in complex works that deserved a wider audience. ...

Arnett eventually amassed a vast collection of works by Southern African American artists, including Dial, Holley, Butler, Doyle, Rowe, Thomas and Tolliver, and became an unrivaled expert and champion in their unique category of creative production. He was particularly close with Alabama-born Dial, arguably the most critically recognized among the artists. (Holley introduced the Dial to Arnett.)

In a sustained manner, the collector set about bringing their work to the attention of the wider art world. Arnett, who is white, has been lauded for "discovering" the impressive group of African American artists born in the early 20th century and also accused of opportunism. ...

The Souls Grown Deep Foundation revealed its intentions to work with museums on a series of gift/purchase acquisitions. The acquisitions are "designed to strengthen the representation of African American artists from the Southern United States in the collections of leading museums across the country and internationally." ...

 

Quiltmakers from Gee's Bend, Wilcox County, Alabama

Road to California

Made by Lucy T. Pettway around 1970, Gee's Bend, Wilcox County, Alabama, 95" x 73", unused.

Available $10,300
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Blocks

Made by Annie Mae Young (b.1928) around 1996, Gee's Bend, Wilcox County, Alabama, 81" x 74", unused.

Available $9,500
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Quiltmakers from Boligee, Greene County, Alabama

Some of the Boligee quiltmakers had relatives in Gee's Bend. However, Boligee, in Greene County, southwest of Tuscaloosa, is not as isolated geographically as Gee's Bend (Wilcox County, AL).

Drunkard Path

Made by Roberta Jemison around 1989, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama, 87" x 76", unused. (Very shiny, bright colors.)

Available $4,500
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Crystals

Made by Lureca Outland, around 1999, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama, 87" x 76", unused.

Available $3,200
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Floating Blocks

Made by Mary Maxtion, around 1984, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama,
94" x 81", unused.

Available $2,500
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Bag Quilt

Made by Mary Maxtion around 1991, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama,
82" x 74", unused. (Actual colors are brighter than photo.)

Available $5,300
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Sunflowers

Made by Roberta Jemison, around 1999, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama, 85" x 77", unused.

Available $2,800
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Rolling Star Quilt

Made by Pearl Washington, (date unknown), Boligee, Greene County, Alabama, 89" x 87", some use.

Available $2,700
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Heart to Heart

Made by Mary Maxtion, around 1998-1999, Boligee, Greene County, Alabama, 80" x 72", unused.

Available $3,600
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Quiltmakers from Mt. Pelia, Lee County, Alabama

Some of the Mt. Pelia quiltmakers had relatives in Gee's Bend. However, unlike Gee's Bend (Wilcox County, AL), the Mt. Pelia community, in Lee County, in the Auburn, AL metropolitan area, is not geographically isolated.

Ain't Deuce + a Quarter

Made by Ernestine Warren around 1995, Mt.Pelia, Lee County, Alabama, 90" x 71", unused.

Available $3,800
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2-Sided Quilt

Made by Ruth Lockhart, around 1959, Mt Pelia, Lee County, Alabama,
81" x 68", unused. (Actual colors bolder than photo.)

Available $6,800
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Quiltmakers from Macon, Georgia

Job's Tears

Made by Viola Cox around 1960, Macon, Georgia. Size: 85" x 72", unused.

Available $1,650
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Yin Yang

Anonymous, made in 1940s, Fulton County, Georgia, 81" x 79", printed feedsack on back, used.

Available $950
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