The Fabric of Memory

(Cody, Wyo) “Here in Wyoming we have a lot of opportunity to say things with our art,” says Jeanne Knudson of the Textile Artists of Greater Yellowstone. A talented group of local artists has created a unique exhibit for the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center. The special exhibition, entitled The Fabric of Memory, will run in the Ford Foundation Gallery from March 2 to May 20. [image: Ito Quilt.jpg] Fabric artists create unique pieces of art that resemble small quilts and showcase the artist’s talent, craft, and emotions. The members of TAGY visited Heart Mountain Interpretive Center last fall looking for inspiration, and they found it. Channeling thoughts and feeling from that visit, the group created over 20 themed pieces that will be showcased in the exhibit. Pam Harris, an artist from Cody, created a piece that was inspired by the over 450 barracks that once filled the landscape at Heart Mountain. “I was moved by how stark, cramped, bleak, and open the barracks were,” she says in her artist’s statement. These new works of art will be accompanied by a large story quilt created in 1990 by former Heart Mountain incarceree Naoko Yoshimura Ito. Mrs. Ito originally created her quilt as part of a show for the Oakland Museum that focused on Japanese American Women. Later her quilt was featured on a 1996 poster distributed by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Last year, at the annual Heart Mountain pilgrimage, Mrs. Ito generously donated the quilt to the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center. [image: DSC_0147.jpg] The quilt, titled “Letting Go” beautifully depicts the story of a 15-year-old girl and her younger brother, both American Citizens incarcerated at Heart Mountain because of their Japanese ancestry. Prohibited from bringing pets to camp, Naoko and her brother adopted a baby bird. They later learned that important lesson in life—all that is captured must at some point be set free. The quilt is a work of art that speaks volumes about an imprisoned childhood. Visitors can see all these pieces on display at the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center through May 20. The exhibit is included with regular paid admission to the museum. #reboot #news