After stitching together an internationally recognized career in the field of art quilts, multi-talented Ruth Bass is producing her last local show in what promises to be a royally good finale.
The Yachats resident is bringing to town an art quilts exhibition themed simply Diana, a tribute to the late British princess. Some 100 works will be on display from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday through Monday, Feb. 18-20, in the Yachats Commons. A suggested donation of $5 will help defray expenses for sponsor Polly Plumb Productions, a local nonprofit that brings arts and related events to the community.
Not to be confused with bedding, art quilts are “usually original designs to hang on the wall, as a painting or tapestry would be,” Bass said. Prices can run from less than $100 to tens of thousands; a work by Hollis Chatelain, an internationally renowned artist, fetched $42,000.
Styles can range from landscapes or nature to abstracts, collages, and portraits. That last style, portraits, will be much in evidence at this weekend’s show, spotlighting the celebrated life of the late princess.
The actual art quilts, which won’t be for sale, are assembled by a fabric enterprise in Minnesota called Cherrywood Fabrics. Cherrywood conducts annual juried competitions called “challenges,” with a pre-selected theme and color palette. The colors for Diana are white and three shades of pink.
“When Cherrywood offered me Diana, I jumped at it, considering how much the British royals have been in the news” with the death of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Harry’s best-selling book, Bass said. She curated several art quilt shows in Yachats over the past several years, including three iterations of the popular Gems of the Ocean productions.
Bass’ own “challenge” pieces have been shown throughout the U.S. as well as in France, Japan, and Korea. She was the founder of Oregon Fiber Artists in Eugene, and co-owner of the former Quilter’s Junction there for 13 years.
Since moving to Yachats with her partner in 2012 from Springfield, the former Polly Plumb board member built on her already-impressive art resume. She launched three international art quilt challenges, hosting two shows by Chatelain. She continues to study under Chatelain, focusing now on watercolor art.
A former computer programmer, Bass has been interested in art “ever since I was a little kid.”
She demonstrated that interested locally by painting the colorful sea lion statue in downtown Yachats and also designing the colorful mosaic planters that adorn Yachats, Waldport, and Seal Rock.
“I’m hoping someone in the Yachats area will pick up the torch” of producing art quilt shows in Yachats, Bass said. Anyone interested may contact Polly Plumb Productions, or Bass herself via email at Ruth@ruthmbass.com.