African American Quilt Guild of Oakland: Why I Quilt

The African American Quilt Guild of Oakland (AAQGO) was formed in 2000 to focus on traditional African American quilt making. Over the years, the membership has grown to reflect the ethnic makeup of the city and their practices have evolved to encompass every quilting style. Three celebrated members of the AAQGO, Frances Porter, Teri Green, and LaQuita Tummings, host a studio visit to address the question “Why I Quilt,” explaining how they became quilters, sharing their quilt journeys, and displaying some of their creations.

Frances Porter, a native of Houston, is ninety-six years young and began quilting when she was eighty. Over the years her style has evolved from traditional blocks to narrative quilts highlighted with computer-generated photos and appliqué. Ms. Porter’s quilts have been exhibited in the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky, and in the Texas Quilt Museum in La Grange, Texas.

Teri Green has been sewing since she was eight years old but began quilting in 2000. Since then she has made over fifty quilts, using techniques ranging from traditional to paper piecing and art and story quilts. Her work has been exhibited in several shows including the Solano County Fair, Pacific Internal Quilt Festival, the National Quilt Museum, and the de Young Museum. One of her quilts was featured in the October 2020 Quiltfolk magazine.

LaQuita Tummings is a self-taught quilter who loves color and incorporates beadwork, appliqué, and other embellishments into her work. She has been quilting for over forty years and is currently exploring using fabric as a medium for sculpture. Her work has been displayed at the Florence Museum of Art in South Carolina, the Museum of Art in Columbus, Ohio, and the San Jose Museum of Art.