New Quilt Museum exhibition examines Colonial Revival

"Burgoyne Surrounded," maker unknown, West Virginia, 1935-1940, 84 x 58 in.
"Burgoyne Surrounded," maker unknown, West Virginia, 1935-1940, 84 x 58 in.

Long before Pinterest or Martha Stewart, the DIY culture thrived in the United States. The International Quilt Study Center and Museum's newest exhibition, "Perfecting the Past: Colonial Revival Quilts," explores a movement from 1880-1940, when Americans looked to antique objects for inspiration and used patterns from newspapers instead of Pinterest boards online to make goods inspired by the past.

The exhibition opens Dec. 7 in the Peg Coryell Gallery at the museum, 1523 N. 33rd St.

Audiences can take their first peek of this exhibition on Dec. 7 during First Friday Artwalk. The museum galleries will be open to the public for free from 4:30-7 p.m. In addition to celebrating the exhibition's grand opening, pianist Angela McLean will perform selections from her holiday CD. Activities will be available for children.

"The Colonial Revival reflected Americans' unsettled feelings about changing social, economic and cultural conditions," said Jonathan Gregory, assistant curator of exhibitions. "One way Americans dealt with the changes was looking to the past. They developed nostalgia for the time before industrialization and the Civil War and borrowed from its architecture, interiors and hand-crafts."

The exhibition features quilts and other domestic artifacts, such as flatware and porcelain tableware, representative of the movement.

Funding support for this exhibition comes from the Nebraska Arts Council, the Nebraska Cultural Endowment and the Friends of the International Quilt Study Center and Museum.

"Perfecting the Past: Colonial Revival Quilts," will be on display until Sept. 1. Lectures and public programming will be held in conjunction with the exhibition during its run. Visit and click on "Calendar" to view listings of these and other events. The museum is open Tuesday to Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday from 1-3 p.m., and admission is $6.

- Laura Chapman