Forty Years of Progress - Thatcher to May

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Mary McIntosh

Contemporary quilt commissioned for The Forties Collection, a body of work representing contemporary quiltmaking across the U.K. in the 40th anniversary year of The Quilters' Guild.

Looking back at the newspaper headlines of the major events of the last forty years, this quilt is a snapshot of the social and political changes that have taken place over our generation, and a conclusion that nothing really has changed. Our political divisions are as wide as ever and social progress is undermined by prejudice and hatred. Only our obsession with the royal family and national sporting glory unites the nation. The feminist hope that when women were in charge all would be well with the world has been truly dashed.

The Forties Collection quilts were made to celebrate the 40th anniversary of The Quilters’ Guild of the British Isles. The 18 regions of The Guild are represented, as well as the three age groups of Young Quilters. Each piece was a new work specially made by a Guild member not already represented in The Collection. The makers were asked to interpret the theme of 40 as creatively as possible. The rule was that the finished piece had to have one dimension of 40 inches and between 25 and 40 inches in the other dimension. These pieces were exhibited at the Festival of Quilts in 2019 in a gallery entitled ‘Spotlight@40’.

Commissioned by Region 8 (Essex, Suffolk)

30 inches (76cm) x 40 inches (102cm)

Forty Years of Progress - Thatcher to May