Just when Geneseo started to get cold, local Pittsford artist Carol Taylor brought us something to keep warm - a series of quilts in the form of her exhibit Piece by Piece, now in the Kinetic Gallery.
These aren't Grandma's quilts; Taylor's are unique and vivid pieces of art that are intended to be hung on walls instead of used as bedspreads. Taylor has been quilting since 1993 and has created nine series of quilts since 2000. She calls herself "obsessed with quilting" and loves "spending time in [her] studio 'playing' with fabrics, threads, and designs."
Taylor is clearly doing more than just playing: She has developed quite an expertise at quiltmaking. Although each quilt could be categorized loosely as "patchwork," Taylor's use of shapes, textures, patterns and colors make each work an artful composition.
Some of the pieces may look like relatively "normal" quilts from farther away, but upon closer inspection, one finds that the patterns are astounding in their intricacy and detail - nothing like the symmetrical squares of a typical quilt. They truly look more like paintings than pieces of fabric. Most noticeable in Taylor's quilts is her vibrant use of color that runs in a range from rainbow colors to complementary colors to even neutrals, but all are bright, striking and unavoidably captivating to the viewer. Her use of layering patches of color and shapes and switching back and forth in direction creates an illusion of movement hypnotic to the eye. Even the thread is used as an equal part of each piece of art, an essential element of the pattern in design.
What is most impressive about each quilt is not its noticeably bright colors or intricate patterns, but its unexpected use of changing value - something Taylor takes special care to create. Although she admitted, "I love color!" she said that, "most viewers react to the color in my work, but I believe that color gets all the credit and value does all the work, so the use of value is very important in my finished pieces." This is quite evident in the impressive color gradation from dark to light in almost every piece. And although her pieces are abstract, each creates some sort of mood or image. One of her most impressive pieces is "Eclipse #2," a recreation of the moon that realistically replicates with tie-dye the moon's texture, and creates an elegant transition from dark to light in parallel with a lunar eclipse.
If you want to find out more about Taylor's quilts and quiltmaking classes, check out her Web site at http//www.caroltaylorquilts.com and make sure to stop by her exhibit Piece by Piece, running now until Nov. 20 in the Kinetic Gallery in the College Union. The gallery is sponsored by Activities Commission.