Blocks, Bendolph Cotton Rug

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The "Blocks" hand-made cotton rug is based on a quilt by Mary Lee Bendolph (African American, b. 1935), a quilter with the of the Gee's Bend collective in Alabama.

Ms. Bendolph was honored by the National Endowment for the Arts for her contributions to art in America.

The women of Gee’s Bend—a small, remote, Black community in Alabama, have created hundreds of quilt masterpieces dating from the early twentieth century to the present. Resembling an inland island, Gee’s Bend is surrounded on three sides by the Alabama River. Some seven hundred or so inhabitants of this small, rural community are mostly descendants of slaves, and for generations, they worked the fields belonging to the local Pettway plantation. Enlivened by a visual imagination that extends the expressive boundaries of the quilt genre, these original creations constitute a crucial chapter in the history of American art. 

Using scraps of everyday fabrics like cotton sheeting, corduroy, and denim, which was often salvaged from well-worn work clothes, the women created quilts of astonishing beauty and originality. In design, the quilts are equally remarkable. Bold geometric shapes, dramatic shifts in scale and color, and an improvisational approach to the way the fabrics are assembled produce abstract compositions more akin to the rhythms of jazz and African art than to the order and repetitiousness of many traditional American quilts.

This hand-loomed rug makes a great gift for any person who loves African American Art, Contemporary Art or Outsider Art. Perfect for a hallway, foyer, bedroom, study, living room or library.

Material: Flat-weave hand-woven cotton rug.

Measures 4' x 6'.

Made in India.

Machine wash in cold water. Do not dry in dryer.