Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name



Fine Arts

Committee Chair

Gordon, Lida Gail

Author's Keywords

Art quilts; Quilt block design; Feminist art; Screen printing; Piecework quilts


Prints--Kentucky--Louisville--Exhibitions; Painting--Kentucky--Louisville--Exhibitions; Art quilts; Block designs; Screen process printing; Feminism and art


This thesis explores pattern juxtaposition using traditional American quilt block designs as the compositional basis for nine works pieced from screen printed paper. In the 1970s, the quilt was celebrated for its apparent connection to Modernist design and was reclaimed by many feminist artists including Miriam Schapiro as a symbol of the exclusion of women's crafts from the arts hierarchy. The tension between these two perspectives continues today in the contemporary art quilt movement. Block designs are tightly organized, relying on grids and repeated geometric forms to communicate multiple patterns simultaneously. Controlled placement of light and dark pieces can create effects like "counterchange," a frequently employed illusion which occurs when the mind shifts repeatedly between positive and negative shapes. Counterchange perplexes by suggesting that more than one pattern can occupy the same visual space.