February 2, 2023

Quilt of Many Cultures

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Imagine how excited I was to learn that our Quilt of Many Cultures which was made possible via a grant from the Seekonk Cultural Council (funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council) was on the front page of the Reporter!

Nothing gave me greater joy that day than seeing that the women who spent from March 17th through early October completing quilt blocks which visually expressed their personal view of their culture would be highlighted for the community to see. Each of these women had varying degrees of quilting expertise and yet collectively produced a gorgeous work of art that can be seen hanging at the back entrance to the Seekonk Town Hall. I am so proud of these women: Vangy AuClair, Darcy Baker, Diane Brennan, Shavaughn Buckley, Cynthia Burk, Patti Dalton, Cila DaSilva, Christine DeCesare, Maria Duarte, Kathy Perrault, Caroline and Elizabeth Welch. Some of us used traditional quilting designs for their block. Diane for example used a flower motif which was "a tulip in 4 squares branching out from a middle square with each petal representing a cultural part of those in her immediate family"

Cynthia Burk reflected on a broadcast of the war in Ukraine and upon "hearing a woman in Kiev saying Dakujem which is Slovak for Thank You was taken back to times with her mother and grandmother who immigrated from Czechoslovakia. Her block also honors her paternal Ashkenazi Jewish ancestors who just may have crossed paths with her maternal grandparents." Her block is the center of our quilt as it's amazing in its simplicity and deep meaning.

Patti Dalton's block depicts a kayak and her rich history with music in her current family and in her youth. Patti is a lover of folk music and counts many incredible artists as great friends.

Cila DaSilva made two blocks which represent her Portuguese upbringing so rich in dance, and gorgeous colorful attire. Her embroidery is absolutely stunning, and without her many hours of help hand quilting the quilt would still not be finished.

Christine DeCesare fashioned a picnic table using the paper piecing technique expressing memories of "spending time with family and friends, eating good food and being in nature."

Maria Duarte highlighted her talented granddaughter who is an accomplished gymnast. The silhouette method that Maria used is gorgeous.

These are merely some of the blocks that I chose to describe. I encourage everyone to see this beautiful work of art that is hanging for the community to enjoy. Part of what I love about this community is the rich cultural diversity which make up our towns. Take your children in to see this work of art that I am so grateful to have helped bring to fruition.

Leslie Guglielmo

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