Combine old quilt blocks with a little kinetic energy and art becomes a living, breathing, turning entry for this year's Pratt County Fair.
Patrice Egging of Pratt likes to see things move. Her recent experiment with kinetic energy in combination with old quilt blocks led to an intriguing trio that was put on display for the public to see at the 2019 Pratt County Fair.
Egging, who entered her creation in the clothing and textiles open class quilting category, earned a blue ribbon for her work, but more important to her was the fact that somehow she combined her faith, some unused fabric and old nick-nacks into a beautiful flowing, moving work of art.
"I call it 'The Trio,'" Egging said at the fair on Wednesday. "My faith is based on the Holy Trinity, and so I made three of these hanging circles, with three sections of four quilts blocks each, and made them all moveable so that they wind or a fan or a small breeze can make them move. I love it when they are all moving."
Egging said she got the old quilt blocks from Pratt quilter Glenn Davis, but wasn't terribly thrilled with the dull, hexagon shapes that had been cut and sewed together already. She decided to dress each block up with some added stuffing to make it puffy like a pillow, then worked the edges with colored embroidery thread that she found in a box of 'goodies' from somewhere. When she got bored with that, she added buttons from a collection that came from her daughter-in-law's mother.
"Some of them are double-sided with the buttons, others didn't get that much attention," Egging said. "I just kind of dressed them each up with what caught my attention at the time. I had the most fun putting them together and then figuring out how to make them move."
Egging said she had seen modern-art kinetic models and decided that was what she wanted to do with her puffy, quilt-block creations. She used fishing swivels to attach the individual blocks in groups of four, then fastened each line to a circle rod. A tripod of chain links on flexible hangers keeps the whole project mobile and it moves when a fan or slight breeze comes in contact with it.
"I really need a tall, tall bar to hang this on here to make it work right," Egging said. "But at home it has a place above my baby grand piano and I just love when it turns and turns and all three sets of the trio are set in motion."
Egging's granddaughter, Sidney Freeman, 6, said she liked the different parts of her grandmother's artwork, but the blocks with pink in the middle were her favorite.
Somehow the whole project fits with this year’s county fair theme, ‘Mary Piggins Returns,’ but Egging said she didn’t plan it that way.