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Life Arts    H3'ed 2/18/23

The Secrets of Art Quilts, Cortisol and Your Health

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Winding Curves by Diane Gerrior
Winding Curves by Diane Gerrior
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Why go to a quilt show?

Well, there's an abundance of beauty, for one thing. And for another, both appreciating as well as creating art can lower stress and enhance wellbeing as well as longevity, according to scientific studies.

The 34th annual Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival, the largest quilt event on the Eastern Seaboard, will be held at the Hampton Roads Convention Center in Hampton Virginia February 23 - 26, 2023 and will feature over 500 quilts, wearables, and textile works of art in competitions and special exhibits plus a merchant mall.

The Painted Butterfly by Rebecca Haley won Third place in Wall Quilt Competition, MAQF 2022.
The Painted Butterfly by Rebecca Haley won Third place in Wall Quilt Competition, MAQF 2022.
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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A World Health Organization review found that both receptive participation, like visiting a museum, and active participation, like singing in a choir, had health benefits. The report found evidence for the potential value of the arts to play a critical role in health promotion; to help prevent the onset of mental illness and age-related physical decline and to support the treatment or management of mental illness, noncommunicable diseases and neurological disorders.

A 2016 Drexel University study found that making art can significantly reduce cortisol, a stress-related hormone. The higher a person's cortisol level, the more stressed a person is likely to be. The researchers found that 75 percent of the participants' cortisol levels lowered during just 45 minutes of making art.

'and...(dot, dot, dot)'  by Gail Stepanek and Jan Hutchison won Second Place in Traditional Category, MAQF 2022.
'and...(dot, dot, dot)' by Gail Stepanek and Jan Hutchison won Second Place in Traditional Category, MAQF 2022.
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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An attendee takes a closer look
An attendee takes a closer look
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Researchers from University College London (UCL) found that people who engaged in the arts more frequently had a 31% lower risk of dying early when compared to those who didn't, according to an article on cnn.com. Even going to the theater or museum only once or twice a year was linked with a 14% lower risk.

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Ancient Times by Claudia C Myers won First Place Longarm Machine Workmanship, MAQF 2022.
Ancient Times by Claudia C Myers won First Place Longarm Machine Workmanship, MAQF 2022.
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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You may be improving your health and wellbeing right now as you enjoy these images of art quilts from the 2022 Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival (as well as a couple of sneak previews from this year's show!)


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Myla, age 9, admires this owl quilt. She is a quilter too, and is  wearing a quilted vest she made herself when she was 8.
Myla, age 9, admires this owl quilt. She is a quilter too, and is wearing a quilted vest she made herself when she was 8.
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Jacuzzi Jazz #2 by Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry won First Place Innovative, MAQF 2022.
Jacuzzi Jazz #2 by Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry won First Place Innovative, MAQF 2022.
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Preview of art quilts you can see in the 2023 Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival:

One of the special exhibits id the 2022/23 Cherrywood Fabric annual challenge, "Graffiti". 186 quilts were juried into this exhibit from 386 entries. These exciting, 20" x 20" art quilts premiered in Houston last fall and will be traveling during 2023, all the locations are listed on their website.

Graffiti Exhibit by Cherrywood Fabrics
Graffiti Exhibit by Cherrywood Fabrics
(Image by Cherrywood Fabrics)
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The "Quiet" exhibition of fiber art by members of Textile Artists of Virginia (TAVA) is another one of the special displays. The fifteen art quilts featured are all 24" wide, with varying lengths, and offer serene and comforting images.

Aura Aum by Meryl Ann Butler
Aura Aum by Meryl Ann Butler
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Asleep on the Job by Linda Carol Adrienne
Asleep on the Job by Linda Carol Adrienne
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Blacksburg resident and MAQF instructor, Paula Golden's quilt, "Quiet No More" features vintage white collars from the times when women were required to wear business suits to work. The arrangement subtly forms a uterus and ovaries.

Quiet No More by Paula Golden
Quiet No More by Paula Golden
(Image by Photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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Another local textile group, the Tidewater Quilters Guild (TQG) is presenting an exhibit at the Festival entitled "Four Seasons by the Sea," featuring 38 quilts.

Windows on the Seasons of the Outback by Meryl Ann Butler
Windows on the Seasons of the Outback by Meryl Ann Butler
(Image by photo by Meryl Ann Butler)
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The 34th annual Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival will take place Feb 23-26, 2023 at the Hampton Roads Convention Center, 1610 Coliseum Dr, Hampton, VA 23666, and will feature over 500 quilts, wearables, and textile works of art in competitions and special exhibits and a merchant mall. Admission for non-registered participants is $17.00 (Sunday only $15.00), includes re-admission, and can be purchased on-site during show hours. (10-5 on Thurs, Fri, Sat and 10-4 on Sunday. Under 16 free with adult.) #quiltfest #midatlanticquiltfestival #maqf
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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)
 

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