Gee’s Bend Pettway Quilt Design Covered Mug with Tea Infuser from The Met Museum


The extraordinary craftswomen of Gee’s Bend, Alabama, have nurtured the art of quilting since the 19th century. Women enslaved on Joseph Gee’s cotton plantation, established in 1816, initiated the practice out of necessity for warmth, and it burgeoned into a tradition passed down through the generations. Astonishing in their originality, each Gee’s Bend quilt interweaves history and narrative. The brilliant design on this mug recreates Housetop and Bricklayer with Bars (ca. 1955), a pattern by Gee’s Bend quilter Lucy T. Pettway (American, 1921-2004). This exceptional textile is the only Gee’s Bend quilt in the Museum’s holdings that appears to be intentionally pictorial; Pettway has realized an imaginary aerial view of the old Pettway plantation, formerly belonging to Joseph Gee. © 2021 Estate of Lucy T. Pettway / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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