I presented the Runaway Quilt Project to a group of ~15 Brooklyn College alumni last night, as part of an art event at the campus library, and I made a Prezi for this presentation, which I then used as part of a static homepage to update this site. I asked before getting started, and it turns out there were three quilters in the room. The group asked a lot of questions throughout the presentation, and they were very encouraging, thought the theme of the project was interesting, exploring quilting and slavery, and thanked me for sharing it with them. Some had recently seen the quilt exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum, “Workt by Hand”, and others made recommendations for quilt shows that I should attend. One alumnae asked me where she could have a quilt repaired, or conserved, and I gave her the information for places where she could ask that question – like the Antonio Ratti Textile Center and Reference Library at the Metropolitan Museum of Art or the International Quilt Study Center and Museum. Some of the other questions came regarding the Underground Railroad quilt code myth and Gee’s Bend quilters.
Preservation was the main idea that I took away from this event, since conservator Slava Polischuk opened the evening with conservation, explaining how to care for family photos and personal documents and demonstrating how to seal a document by making a Mylar envelope for it. He mentioned Talas and Gaylord for archival supplies, in response to a question, and these are places where I could get the materials I will need to conserve the data quilts as they age, such as cotton gloves, storage boxes, and archival tissue. I talked more about this in a 2012 post about preservation.