Friday, March 23, 2018

There is a Traveling Show Coming to Town

Latvia celebrates its 100th anniversary of independence in November, 2018, with many special events happening in Latvia and around the world over the course of the year. The traveling exhibit of Latvian mittens began its route in San Francisco, California, in October, 2017. In November, Denver, Colorado, hosted the exhibit, followed by New York in December, Cleveland/Lakewood, Ohio, in February, Minneapolis, Minnesota, in March, and soon the exhibit will be on display in Milwaukee/Mequon, Wisconsin.

Concordia University in Mequon will host the Latvian mitten exhibit from April 1-19 in the Rincker Memorial Library. There will be a special presentation by Laura Beldavs about Latvian Mittens: Traditions and Meanings, at 7 PM on Wednesday, April 11.


If you're in the area, I hope you'll have a chance to view the exhibit. Forty-five pairs of mittens are on loan from the Latvian Ethnographic Museum of Priedaine, New Jersey, and additional mittens from members of the local Latvian community will also be included.

There will be another fiber exhibit this year, but it is traveling around Latvia, not the US. The project is known as Stāstu Sega or the Story Quilt. This patchwork quilt fiber exhibit also celebrates Latvia's 100 years of independence.

Latvia 100 logo from lv100.lv

1,097 quilt squares (18 cm or 7" square) were made by Latvians (or those with a Latvian connection) who are living outside of Latvia. The squares were sent to Latvia and then assembled to create a 7-panel Story Quilt measuring 10 meters long by 3 meters high. Since I'm a knitter (though also a quilter), I submitted a knitted square depicting a Latvian mitten cuff and pattern for the Story Quilt and hope to see the entire display when I am in Latvia in May. The quilt will be on display in the town of Cēsis at the time of my visit. I will be attending a Knitting Retreat in Kurzeme but I absolutely must squeeze in a trip to Cēsis to view this impressive exhibit.

My knitted "mitten" square for the Story Quilt

You can view a 26-second video from the Stāstu Sega Facebook page here. It shows a little of the assembly design process of the quilt and you can get an idea about the quilt's size and final format.

Let's celebrate Latvia's 100 years of independence!

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