Quilt Squares Wanted
Media and academic sources estimate that on average 45,000 people were detained by ICE each day in 2019. It is easy to become inured to such statistics, but sometimes seeing or hearing a statistic in a new way can change that.
Remember the first time you heard the names of 9/11 victims read one by one? Or the photos of the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt? The dead were no longer just statistics after one of those experiences.
The Human Rights Working Group of the Kent Street Coalition (Concord, NH) seeks to have a similar effect by creating a 9-foot by 45-foot quilt with 45,000 marks. With support from Grannies Respond and other organizations, we’re collecting quilt squares. Each piece will be one yard square, and we’ll sew them together to create a gigantic quilt that can be exhibited around the region.
Please consider lending your creativity to this project. It is arty and crafty, and you can do it with friends. Ultimately, a large piece of political art will be created and shared among people who believe that immigrants and asylum seekers should be treated compassionately, not thrown into profit-making jails
Work with others in your area to create a cloth square with 1,000 marks representing immigrants detained by ICE. The marks should fit on a piece of fabric 36 inches square. Design your square so that there is a one-inch border on each edge. That will allow us to sew them all together. Prewash your fabric. Then, get creative. Marks can be made by gluing something onto the fabric, stenciling, painting, stamping (design a stamp and order it online from a company such as Zazzle), or another idea you come up with.
Shown here is a stamp that will be used by one group in the Concord, NH, area. It is about one square inch and will be stamped multiple times on our square to create 1,000 “marks.” Since 1,000 marks will take up different amounts of space depending on the size or type of mark you make you may have extra space. If so, feel free to add words or images. Or, send an additional piece of fabric you’ve designed, and it will be added to the border of the gigantic quilt.
Please email me (GlenRing52@gmail.com) by July 22 if you have questions or want to participate. When you sign up, provide a contact for your group with an email address and phone number. Also, tell me the name of your group and send a short statement explaining what this challenge means to you.
By August 31, please send me the completed squares: Glen Ring, 67 Appleton Street, Concord, NH 03301. Sewers in the Concord area will piece the squares together. We’ll arrange to meaningfully display the quilt in New Hampshire and then make it available to other immigrant justice groups for display around the region.
There is also a private Facebook group for this project. Group members can communicate with others working on the project, exchange ideas, and get help if they run into problems.