Narratives of the Soul

Sam and Connie Perkins Central Court

Narratives of the Soul presents significant African American story quilts drawn from the Spencer Museum’s collection as well from the Kansas City and Lawrence region. The show complements the nationally touring exhibition of narrative quilts And Still We Rise: Race, Culture, and Visual Conversations. The objects in this exhibition deal with complex themes of racism, discrimination, Kansas history, and African heritage, as well as specific communities and local history. National artists include Faith Ringgold, who will visit Lawrence to give a keynote lecture at the National African American Quilt Convention, and whose Flag Story Quilt is a star of the Spencer Museum’s permanent collection. Other featured regional artists include Marla Jackson, Sonié Joi Ruffin, Sherry Whetstone, NedRa Bonds, and Marvin Crum, as well as Patricia Montgomery from California, and Sara Bunn, from New York. Historic quilts by former enslaved person and Lawrence resident Maria Rodgers Martin serve as a centerpiece.

Principal funding for this program is provided by the Kansas Humanities Council, a nonprofit cultural organization connecting communities with history, traditions, and ideas to strengthen civic life. Additional support comes from the Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission, the City of Lawrence, KU Student Senate, the Jedel Family Foundation, Women Philanthropists for KU, and the Kaw Valley Quilters Guild. 

Selected images