Quilts inspired by architecture, art and design

Cover Stories: Quilts Inspired by Architecture and Design exhibited at the Modern Institute in Glasgow

Arrange Whatever Pieces Come Your Way creates unique, handcrafted covers inspired by art, architecture and clothing – on view now through September 2022 at The Modern Institute, Glasgow

Friends for more than three decades, Annabelle Harty and Sheelagh Boyce have teamed up on a creative project inspired by their mutual love of art and architecture. In 2018, the couple Arrange Whatever Pieces launched Come Your Way, a growing collection of handmade quilts inspired by architecture and landscape, reproducing imagery from their personal collections, travel memories and ideas.

Referencing works by iconic architects and forgotten buildings, scenic vistas mixed with more conceptual imagery, and using materials from garments they collect from family and friends, the pair bring a deeper, personal meaning to each piece they create. Four of her quilts are now on view at The Modern Institute, Glasgow (until September 2022), showcasing her diverse approaches to the medium and her inspirations.

blanket 37 Photography: Patrick Jameson

Quilt 37, back detail. Photography: Patrick Jameson

For quilts 37 and 38, Boyce and Harty used an Issey Miyake plantation dress, the pattern of which was subtly reflected in the shapes of the quilts.

True to form, each quilt is defined by architectural and historical references: the designs allude to Avebury’s Neolithic standing stones, the shape of which is traced on blue fabric. On the back, Quilt 37 is defined by the silhouette of Inverkip Power Station, a 1970s building that was shut down shortly after its completion due to the 1973 oil crisis and never operated as intended.

blanket 38 Photography: Patrick Jameson

The duo’s interest in structures that have been demolished or never realized is reflected on the reverse of Quilt 38, which features a depiction of Pinkston’s imposing cooling tower, a 1950s building originally used to generate electricity for Glasgow’s tram and underground railway system was designed.

blanket 39 Photography: Patrick Jameson

Quilt 39, back detail. Photography: Patrick Jameson

Adding color to the collection, Quilt 39 features a yellow and blue cotton weave from a Nathalie du Pasquier shirt, while the more subtle reverse features three pairs of gym shorts.

“This is the first time Arrange Whatever Pieces Come Your Way has used a patterned fabric, focusing on the quality and consistency of the print as opposed to the pink reverse, and tonally representing the wear and use of the material,” reads one Accompanying note exhibition. “The geometry of the dissected shorts at the back focuses on the space around the squares and the centerline that connects the three garments.”

blanket 40 Photography: Patrick Jameson

For Quilt 40, Boyce and Harty chose to focus on negative space (something they have experimented with in previous quilts). For Quilt 40 they used worker’s jackets, with pockets and functional details still visible on the surface, in brown, green and orange, offset with white to reinforce the negative concept of space. This piece exemplifies the duo’s work, which brings together personal connections, fashion and architecture: The white back, they explain, consists of Harty’s father, architect Brian Henderson’s nightgowns, “intricately put together, with a black dome on homage to the Sizewell B power plant designed by Henderson. ยง

Quilt 40, back detail. Photography: Patrick Jameson

Quilt 40 left and quilt 37 right. Photography: Keith Hunter

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