info on the #UDHR QUILT PROJECT EXHIBITION at the museum of australian democracy, old PARLIAMENT house canberra
At a time when the patchwork of liberties is fraying, craftivism is a global movement that combines craft and activism into quietly powerful protest to call for social and political change. Craftivism allows people to actively engage in democracy, contribute to social change, and transform the world one stitch at a time.
The #UDHRQuiltProject features never before seen work from a global craftivism project. Stitching in local and global stories; see the intricate detail of these quilts that represent the world’s conscience.
Aided by the power of social media, Australian craftivist Tal Fitzpatrick and fellow USA based craftivist Stephanie Dunlap put the call out for collaborators. 131 craftivists from across the globe, united by their passion for quilting and human rights, came together to showcase the power of their voices through the work of their hands.
Through the creation of four quilts, each embroidered with the articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the project draws attention to the way human rights are challenged around the world today. The messages sewn into the quilts inspire visitors think, engage and take action.
The #UDHRQuiltProjectmoves beyond a traditional museum experience by inviting visitors to get involved. Visitors can immerse themselves in craftivism by participating in a range of hands-on craft activities, workshops and community-based events. Textile artist, Tal Fitzpatrick, will be on hand for special events throughout the exhibition to facilitate workshops and discuss the everyday practice of democracy through craftivism.
The artists involved in this project are spread across the globe and represent many different cultures and nationalities, including: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bosnia , Brazil (including descendent of First Nations Peoples), Canada (including descendent of First Nations Peoples - Ojibwe), Catalan, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Dutch/Netherlands, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungry, Ireland (and northern Ireland), Israel, India, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Macedonia, Mexica, New Zealand (including descendent of First Nations Peoples - Pākehā), Norway, Palestine, Poland, Prussia, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russia, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Venezuela, Wales.
Stephanie Dunlap (@illuminatembroidery) is a multidisciplinary artist, student, and activist from Phoenix, Arizona who creates under the moniker illuminate. They work individually and communally to create accessible art that engages with the global community on an individual level. While varied, their larger body of work delves into themes of pattern recognition, intersectionality, and self-efficacy as a way of understanding and emphasizing an individual’s vital role in our global community.
Tal Fitzpatrick (@talfitzpatrick) is a PhD candidate with the Centre for Cultural Partnerships at the Victorian College of Arts, University of Melbourne, Australia. She is an artist, craftivist and community development worker. Her participatory approach to the practice of Appliqué quilting is driven by her fascination with the power of craft to solicit the sharing of stories and ideas. In her creative practice as well as in her practice-based research Tal looks to unpack how we might drive social and political change by using art as a way to engage diverse groups of people in complex conversations. As part of her creative process Tal engages with the public as well as with community groups and charity organisations on projects that explore issues such as women’s rights, disaster resilience and the everyday practice of democracy.
Image credits: Rob Little Digital Images (RLDI), Canberra | Stefan Postles - Chalk Studio, Melbourne