Sister Artists

Background

The Advocacy Project (AP) and Quilt for Change are working together to develop an exciting new partnership between survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) in Mali and quilters in the Global North.

Under the initiative, known as Sister Artists, survivors have produced around 40 embroidered blocks depicting their life in Mali. These are shown below on the second tab (Malian Sister Artists). Quilt for Change has invited quilters from the Global North to turn the blocks into an art quilt. Their finished quilts are featured on the third tab (Global North Sister Artists) as they reach us. When all of the quilts have been submitted they will be exhibited and auctioned. All proceeds will be sent to Mali and invested in an embroidery micro-enterprise (Sini Brodage) for the artists.

Quilt for Change is a long-time partner of AP and a leader in the use of quilting as a tool for social change and AP is delighted to be working with the group again. Sister Artists also represents an important step in AP’s efforts to support survivors from the conflict in northern Mali. Our engagement began in 2014, when we joined forces with Sini Sanuman (“Healthy Tomorrow’), a leading Malian advocate for women’s rights. Over the last five years, over 650 women have enrolled at a Sini Sanuman center where they were trained to make embroidery by Abi Konate and Massaran Traore, pictured below. Almost all of the artists lived in the north before fleeing the conflict and their blocks describe the life they left behind. Many live on less than $2 a day in Bamako and hope to sell embroidery. We hope to make a start with this project.

This exciting initiative has already attracted over 40 talented quilters from the US, Canada, the UK and even Kenya. We hope to exhibit their finished quilts in Washington and New England before the end of this year. Hollis Chatelain will select the best quilt and the winning quilter will receive a gift of fine African fabric. We will keep participants informed about Sini Brodage’s future progress through a blog.

We are trying to accomodate late applications. To participate, please  fill out this form and follow instructions. We will mail you a block that has not been assigned. To pay the $25 entry fee please send a check to The Advocacy Project (2201 P Street, NW, Washington DC) or pay online by clicking on the donate button at the top of this page. Scroll down to the “special purpose” field and enter Sister Artists. For further information contact us at +1 202 758 3328 or email kdelaney@advocacynet.org. We look forward to hearing from you!

Click here to read about the crisis of gender-based violence in Mali and Sini Sanuman’s response. Click here to learn about AP’s program of advocacy quilting.

Mariam Seck coordinates Sini Sanuman’s program in Bamako Abi Konate trains survivors in tailoring and co-manages Sini Brodage Massaran Traore trains survivors in embroidery and co-manages Sini Brodage

Malian embroidered blocks

Malian Sister Artists

#1 Bird #2 Home #3 Cooking
#4 Animals #5 Traditional Huts #6 Huts
#7 Huts #8 Grinding Maze #9 In the Fields
#10 Pirogue #11 Grinding Maze #12 Preparing Maize
#13 At the home #14 Grinding Maize #15 Carrying Maize
#16 Preparing Food #17 Cooking Food #18 In the Fields
#19 Huts #20 Cooking #21 Grinding Maize
#22 Grinding Maize #23 Off to the Market #24 Village Scenes
#25 Camel #26 In the Village #27 Preparing Maze
#28 Off to the Market #29 Camel #30 Camel
#31 Camel #32 On the Road #33 Birds
#34 Hunting  #35 Preparing Maize #36 Cooking
#37 Fishing #38 Preparing Maize #39 Preparing Maize Flower
 
#40 Cultivation #41 Village Huts  

 

 

Finished art quilts

Global North Sister Artists

   
Ellen Fisher, New Hampshire Karen McCann, Rhode Island

 

   
Pam Shanley, South Carolina Deborah Weir, California

 

   
Colleen Ansbaugh, Wisconsin Hope Barton, Connecticut

 

   
Nancy Hershberger, Pennsylvania Janice Jones, Massachusetts 

 

Salama Mamas, Kenya Suzanne Munroe, Rhode Island

 

   
Ellena Georato, New Hampshire Sue Bates, Rhode Island

 

   
Eleanor Levie, Pennsylvania Diane Clapes, Georgia

 

   
Dawn Piasta, Canada Cathey LaBonte, Connecticut

 

   
Karen Pulaski, Massachusetts Glenda Mah, Oregon

 

   
Tricia Deck, Massachusetts Rhonda O’Keefe, New Hampshire

 

   

 

Katherine Wilson, Maryland Janice Jones, Massachusetts

 

   
Janice Jones, Massachusetts Kathleen Paduano

 

   
Sue Willows-Raznikov Veronica Mays, Rhode Island

 

   
Judy L. Miller, California Patricia S. Rennau

 

 
   
Betty Warner, Vermont Wendy Overly, Massachusetts

 

 

 
Linda M. Kim, Texas Susan Charles, Louisiana

 

 

 

Barbara Eisenstein, Maryland Sandy Snowden, England

 

   

Jackie Heupel, Texas Julie Zaccone Stiller, California

 

 
   

\

 

Allison Wilbur, Rhode Island