Who Are You Wearing?

I created this in response to a call for art to the members of Art Cloth Network by the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts in Bethlehem, PA.  The show’s theme is “Luxury and Industry.”

I was able to research the silk industry in America (yes, really!), the role of women and child laborers, and union organizing by the mighty Mother Jones.  Online searches for images of ‘child labor textile industry’ revealed nearly identical photos, taken a hundred years apart in the US (then) and overseas (now).

That got me thinking….

As I made the piece, news organizations reported on the use of immigrant children who are applying for official status in the US in dangerous working conditions.  And the loosening by states of child labor protection laws.

Everything old is new again.

“Who Are You Wearing?” by Mary Vaneecke, 24″ x 24″ 2023
detail, “Who Are You Wearing?” by Mary Vaneecke

Materials:  Vintage unfinished crazy quilt block, layered with vintage kimono scraps, hand-printed ribbon, collaged photographs printed on silk organza, antique glass buttons.  Hand and machine stitch.

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