Title: Heian (Detail)

Year Completed: 1983

Size: H76” × W56” / H193.5 cm × W142 cm

Material: new cotton (Japan, Americ, including furoshiki)

Statement: This is my first completed quilt, using the Double Irish Chain pattern which at that time I found very attractive. I took great care to cut the small squares so that the stripes would match exactly, but used three kinds of striped fabric to create irregular variety. Since I thought of the whole quilt as a single block (rather then as an assemblage of many smaller ones) the irregular stripe patterns form large zig-zags, and idea which recurs in several of my reversible quilts made in the following few years. In the typical Double Irish Chain the large open spaces are filled with four-leaf clover or quadruple heart patterns. I chose instead to use ancient patterns (Genjiko) from the tale of Genji (an ancient historical novel). Each pattern is different; the colors (red and blue) match the colors of the striped fabrics. Heian refers to a period of early Japanese History (from 794 when Kyoto became the capital) during which The Tale of Genji was written.

Other Views