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Quilt show a colorful display at the library

THE DAILY LEADER / JUSTIN VICORY / Connie Anderson helps arrange quilts Friday for the public to take in at the Lincoln County Public Library. Anderson's own quilts are among those displayed at the library this month.

THE DAILY LEADER / JUSTIN VICORY / Connie Anderson helps arrange quilts Friday for the public to take in at the Lincoln County Public Library. Anderson’s own quilts are among those displayed at the library this month.

When the temperature drops, the artistic vision of an artist doesn’t disappear or dissipate, it takes on new form or canvas.

In the case of a number of local artists, the appreciation and celebration of quilted works of art can find a way to warm the soul. During the colder months of the year, these works of art can even serve a more practical purpose – warming the body.

On Friday, local artists and art connoisseurs set up a display of close to 30 quilts from Lincoln, Franklin, Copiah, Franklin and Pike counties at the Lincoln County Public Library. The quilted works of art are available to be seen and appreciated by the public for the rest of the month.

Representing a broad mosaic of colors, sizes, fabric patterns and even textures, each quilt is as uniquely individual as the quilter. Some quilts celebrate a family. Other quilts are designed from portraits, pictures or other images. Some quilts, such as Connie Anderson’s “Tree Mendously Red,” celebrate the holiday season.

A wide selection of quilts of all sizes, styles and fabrics can be found draped over the second floor balcony of the library and in the library meeting room. The quilt show is being staged by the Brookhaven Regional Arts Guild and the local quilt guild.

A wide selection of quilts of all sizes, styles and fabrics can be found draped over the second floor balcony of the library and in the library meeting room. The quilt show is being staged by the Brookhaven Regional Arts Guild and the local quilt guild.

Still other quilts spring from the fancy of one’s imagination.

The particular inspiration that leads to the creation of an exceptional quilt can be as individually random as the artist, according to Quilt Guild member Cathy Etheridge.

“Some moments the inspiration just comes in the middle of the night. Other times, it comes from outside one’s own mind and from the environment around us. It’s a very unique process,” says Etheridge.

Marion Blackwell, who has several quilts on display at the library, appreciates the connection between one another that occurs in the development of the quilted work of art. “Sweet memories” is a quilt that a longtime group of experienced quilters put together. The youngest person in the group that stitched together Blackwell’s design was 75 years old. “Colonial Flowers” is a quilt that her mother embroidered for her. Both hang from the second floor balcony of the library.

“I love the contribution that each person brings to the design. The design process is just one part of it. Often, it’s a collaboration,” said Blackwell Friday.

The quilt exhibit also represents the first major art exhibition event put together by the newly-formed Brookhaven Regional Arts Guild, or BRAG. The group came together in late October as an organization committed to uncovering and supporting the artistic talent of local residents.

At BRAG’s initial meeting, the founding members of BRAG met at Lemanedi’s art gallery in downtown Brookhaven and began a plan to hold art exhibits, competitions and celebrations for the 2014 year. The first idea to take hold was a cooperative exhibition with the Quilt Guild.

The Quilt Guild meets at the library the second Tuesday of each month. Cathy Etheridge helps teach the art of quilting to those interested during their meetings, and says she still has room available for beginning quilters at a “Back to the Basics” seminar that will take place Jan. 28 at 9:30 a.m. at the library.

Those interested need to pre-register to allow time for the purchase of an instructional quilting book, says Etheridge. For more information, Etheridge can be reached at 601-669-1910.

The quilts will be on display the entire month of January in the library, draped over the upstairs balcony in the lobby and displayed in the back meeting room.

BRAG will hold its first official meeting of the year Thursday, Jan. 16, at 5:15 p.m., also at the library, according to BRAG public relations representative Nancy Hank-Myers.