A Fistful of Freedom


Quilt Index Record: 1E-3D-2921

Essay

essay
A Fistful of Freedom Kathryn Harmer Fox East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa Fabric, thread, handmade paper, used tea bags; fiber embedment using scribble stitch, free motion machine embroidered and quilted Mandela was an incredible human being who made me proud to be a South African. He was a very rare politician" able to instill pride in the present, belief in the future, and forgiveness for the past. For this quilt I chose reference images that show his kindness, his humanity, and his strength of character. I wanted to show more than just the formal facade of this powerful statesman without ignoring his political message. I chose an image of an older man, one where his life is written in the many creases and furrows of his face. His inelegant hands (those of a boxer), raised in fists, are an expression of hard-won freedom rather than militant aggression. As he was able to unite black and white in hope, I included an image of Mandela's black-skinned hand clasping that of de Klerk's white one and lifting it in triumph. Lastly, I included the obvious symbols of barbed wire and his prison number; I firmly believe that it was during his many, many years of forced confinement that he became one of the greatest men of our time.

Project Information

InstNameF003
Michigan State University Museum
Quilts and Human Rights
South Africa Quilt History Project (SAQHP)
InstProjNameF003a
Michigan State University Museum Collection
InstInvContrNumF004
15.0195
InstInvContrNumF004a
2015:18.6

Page 1

QuiltTitleF009
A Fistful of Freedom
SubjQuiltF025
Nelson Mandela
interviewerF007e
Kathryn Harmer Fox
DateDataF006b
6/25/2015
QuiltTopF054
Fox, Kathryn Harmer
IfOtherF007d
Museum employee
LocMadeF057a
East London
ProvProvF057e
Eastern Cape
ProvCountryF057f
South Africa
DateQuiltF023
2000-2025
DateFinishF023b
April 2014

Page 2-Quiltmaker Information

ReasonsF060
Art or personal expression
Commemorative
PresUseF062
Museum collection
GenderF098
Female

Page 3-Physical Description

TypeObjF008
Finished quilt
OverallWidthF12a
29 3/4"
OverallLengthF012b
29 1/2"
ShapeEdgeF013
Straight
OverallColorF14b
Multicolor
LayFormatF024
Nontraditional or art

Page 4-Physical Description continued

UniqueF037b
Various fabrics, sewing threads and wools, used tea bags, hand-made paper.
UniqueF038h
Fabric and fibre embedments using scribble stitch, free motion machine embroidery quilting and wrapped and twisted cord making.

Page 6-Design and Fabric Sources

TopSourceF064
Original to maker
ExhibitListF067a
"Conscience of the Human Spirit: The Life of Nelson Mandela", The International Quilt Conference Africa, Johannesburg, South Africa, July 2014. "Conscience of the Human Spirit: The Life of Nelson Mandela", The Kentucky Museum at Wester Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY, September 8, 2015 - January 31, 2016 "Conscience of the Human Spirit: The Life of Nelson Mandela", National Afro American Museum and Cultural Center, Wilberforce, OH, April 7 - October 7, 2016.
RelItemsF088a
"Conscience of the Human Spirit: The Life of Nelson Mandela," exhibit catalog, Marsha MacDowell and Carolyn Mazloomi, Michigan State University Museum, 2014, page 52.

Page 7-Owner Information

OwnershipF082
Public Museum, Library, or Institution
OwnerNameF082a
Michigan State University Museum
OwnerCityF084
East Lansing
OwnerCountyF085
Ingham
OwnerStateF086
Michigan (MI)
OwnerCountryF086b
United States
AcquiredF058
Purchase
ReposFile
15.0195.jpg
1E-3D-2921-234-15.0195.jpg
665763
image/jpeg; charset=binary
zoom
15.0195-zoom.jpg
1E-3D-2921-235-15.0195-zoom.jpg
2174175
image/jpeg; charset=binary
AccessF080
Restricted
CopyRestF080c
All rights reserved, Michigan State University Museum

Data Verification

verify
yes
verifiedby
Beth Donaldson
dateverified
12
20
2016

Extra Fields

ShapeCornersF013b
Straight

Image Information

function
Image - large display (550 or more pixels)
file_medium
image
file_format
jpeg
Contributing Institutions
MATRIX: Center for Humane Arts, Letters and Social Sciences Online at Michigan State University; Michigan State University Museum
Publisher
Quilt Index
Resource Type
StillImage
ImageConF075a
Quilt
ImageTypeF076
Color
photocredit079a1
Pearl Yee Wong
HolderF080a
Michigan State University Museum

Detail Images

No additional images uploaded

Additional Records

No additional records