Three-Dimensional, Kinetic Quilt exhibition opens at Shelburne Museum

Dominique Ehrmann, Come and Follow Me, 2010. Cotton, metal, beads, buttons, tulle, and rayon, 72 x 96 x 18 in. Courtesy of the artist. Photography by Lucien Lisabelle.
Dominique Ehrmann, Come and Follow Me, 2010. Cotton, metal, beads, buttons, tulle, and rayon, 72 x 96 x 18 in. Courtesy of the artist. Photography by Lucien Lisabelle.

Dominique Ehrmann: Once Upon a Quilt opened at Shelburne Museum on May 1 in the Hat and Fragrance Gallery. This immersive, whimsical exhibition features over sixteen quilts ranging from three-dimensional to kinetic quilted sculptures.

Dominique Ehrmann is celebrated for her freestanding, three-dimensional quilted sculptures. Referring to herself a “quilt illustrator,” Ehrmann likes to tell stories with her quilts, many of which have a humorous twist. Inspired by children’s pop-up books, the quilts are technologically complex, using a mix of traditional quilting techniques, appliqués, and commercially printed fabrics.

Ehrmann’s process begins with a simple pop-up design cut from cardboard and colored with crayons. It is then transferred to a full-scale drawing. She creates these fabric sculptures in her spare time, and they can take many years to complete. Her work ranges from the 23-inch-wide Lady Gabie to her well-known Come and Follow Me! quilt, which stands 6 feet tall. The quilts on view will range in form from a medieval vestment to an outdoor kinetic sculpture.

This wind-powered sculpture, aptly titled Kinetic Quilt, will have its public debut at Shelburne Museum. It will greet visitors entering the Hat & Fragrance building. This canvas, foam, and steel sculpture is a departure from Ehrmann’s other work in its materials and scale; however, what it shares with them is the whimsy of mixing traditional and original quilt patterns with new sculptural and technological features.

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