traveling on

The initial sketch for the Stream of Consequences piece started with the idea of inter-connectedness and how the city wove itself around a meandering river.

The Earth Stories exhibition curated by SAQA is soon to close at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles. In the nick of time a blogger and journalist, Patrick Lydon, took the time to see the show and review it. Reviews of art quilt shows are few and far between. Each one gives quilt artists a little jolt of excitement when it appears.

Patrick is Founder and Director of, a network of artists, writers, and sustainability practitioners who focus on the relationships between people and the places in which they live. HIs blog and the SocieCity site are great places to find good news about the world through stories, images, and film. I was truly enthralled by the many stories told and recommend it to anyone looking for GOOD news. There really are some good news stories out there contrary to what our national media hands us on a daily basis. 

Patrick was generous in his praise of the show. He studied the pieces carefully and learned about their back stories. He was particularly generous with his praise of my work: Stream of Consequences. Patrick's reference to a quote by Muir, one of my heroes, gave me great joy:

Kovarik’s quilt reminds me of famed naturalist John Muir’s observation that “when we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.”

I finished Stream of Consequences in 2013. It has been traveling ever since.

When a piece travels with a show it takes on a new life. It becomes its own.  That transition from art I own to art that moves on is one of the primary reason I do this.

Art must move.

Stream of Consequences

The SAQA show, Earth Stories, has opened at the Michigan State University Museum. My entry, Stream of Consequences, honors the work being done by the Wolf River Conservancy.The show is an invitational devoted to good things happening on the earth. The statement for the piece is below the images. Each artist created two pieces, one that measured 12" x 14" and the actual piece, measuring 72" x 72".

Stream of Consequences, ©2013, Paula Kovarik, 11 x 14

Stream of Consequences, ©2013, Paula Kovarik, 71.5" x 71"

It comes from the country, courses through the suburbs, and wraps around the city of Memphis. The Wolf River, a small spring fed river of 90 miles, is one of the great arterial systems of the Mississippi River and all the life that it nurtures. As it flows, it filters, it floods, it captures and distributes. It is a filament that takes everything that flows downhill and sends it forward. It is the meandering collector of last resort for runoff, sprawl, industry and agriculture. Efforts to control it, channel it, or deny its value nearly led to its ruin—until it gained an advocate.

Since 1985, The Wolf River Conservancy has protected and defended the river in the face of development and abuse. The group has cast the Wolf as a community treasure that physically weaves the region together. They know full well its vital function and spectacular potential. They understand it is a pattern that connects.

See the show at:
Michigan State University Museum, May 11 - November 30, 2014
, East Lansing, Michigan
University of Central Missouri Gallery of Art and Design, January 19 - February 28, 2015, Warrensburg, Missouri

stream of consequences

Stream of Consequences, © Paula Kovarik, 2013

done. This piece, a 72" x 72" study of the good things being done by the Wolf River Conservancy has finally come to an end. This is a small detail. I have named it Stream of Consequences.

The SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) exhibit, Earth Stories, will show the entirety of this piece in April of next year at the Michigan State University Art Museum. It has been a long journey of stitching stitching stitching. Now I think I will turn my thoughts to the thousands of other ideas I had while on that journey.

But first I will remove all trace of this one.