February 23, 2013
Visited the Brick House Art Gallery on 36th street in Sacramento’s Oak Park in Sacramento on Saturday, February 23rd to attend a lecture by noted African American quilt artist Alice Beasley. Myself a novice quilter, Ms. Beasley’s self deprecating, humorous words about her early attempts at quilting were most encouraging. Beasley, an attorney for more than thirty years turned to quilting as a means of decompressing after her day at a high power job. Perhaps it is her experience as an attorney but Beasley seems to have a natural gift for public speaking; avoiding the pun here of saying “she kept us in stitches,” but she was indeed delightfully funny. And, in the process she was extremely informative as she shared her quilting expertise.
As a bit of a local historian, when Ms Beasley displayed and described a quilt that she was asked to make as a “genealogy quilt” and mentioned her family name “Bell” and with her “Beasley” name I couldn’t help but ask if her Bell family was connected to the editor of the early African American publication, the Elevator, and/or if she was somehow descended from noted African American historian, Deliah Beasley. The answer to both is, “not to the best of my knowledge”.
In addition to hearing Ms. Beasley speak and visually demonstrate her work, the Brickhouse Art Gallery displayed many most exquisitely constructed contemporary quilts by artistists too numerous to list and discuss here. The afternoon’s changing light playing off the colours and shapes of the quilts enhancing the scene of a veritable smogasboard of artistic talent. It was a joy to be there.The Brickhouse Art Gallery puts on many genre of artistic events in this very pleasant and inviting atmosphere.