January - February 2023: Virginia Holloway
My last exhibit was in March of 2020 at South Shore Conservatory with another fiber artist, Patrice Kelley. The show had a wonderful reception, but closed almost immediately after opening.
Everything changed after that for me and nearly everyone. My part-time jobs became remote, and I spent most of my time alone waiting on zoom in case someone needed my help with connecting to a tutor or using educational resources at Massasoit Community College. Not many did, and at first I used my time creatively, making a large quilt for the first time in a few years.
The situation changed me, and I considered making a big change (moving) but instead, I quit my school job, impulsively, thinking I would really accomplish something. I did do some new experimental work. Most of it is here and some older work, too, because I am slower now and trying to climb some barriers built by age and the pandemic. Quilts are hard physical work.
The newer work is mostly based on gradations of color and pattern in the fabrics, and using them to create what I think of as visual rhythms.
Virginia Holloway – Artist Biography
I grew up in Dallas, Texas. My parents were raised during the great depression, and were frugal because it was necessary. Thrift was incorporated into their philosophy and faith. Creativity was important to make do with what was available, and my parents worked hard to pass these things along to me and my siblings. Most of my female relatives sewed and made quilts, and my grandmother was passionate about it. No fabric was thrown away, and only the least expensive was bought. She bought bags of scraps (“mill ends”) from fabric manufacturers, but nothing else for quilts. They bought fabric at Woolworth to make clothes for my sister and me, and used the scraps for quilts.
I watched my mother and her mother make quilts while watching soap operas during visits. It looked very boring to me at the time. I wanted to be a “real” artist.
An artist in my neighborhood gave affordable oil painting lessons and my parents let my brother and me take advantage. It has made a big difference in my life.
In 1976 I moved to Boston to attend the Museum School, but ran out of money after a couple of years. I applied to a training program for EEG Technology and except for drawing, mostly gave up trying to make art.
This turned out to be a big mistake for me, so I took a couple of design classes at Mass Art while continuing to work. The quilts I inherited from my grandmother were hanging on the wall and speaking to me. I began doing drawings that looked like quilts. I pulled out my sewing machine (a graduation gift from my parents) and began to teach myself what I should have learned from them. Quilts have been my main medium since then.