Follow suit


Have you read “Time Capsule Quilts” in the April TQL? The article is about Susan Shie, who is often referred to as an “outsider artist.” For an outsider, though, she’s pretty connected, to both her own daily life and to the events that shape our world as a whole. The story is about the way her work records it all in fabulously detailed quilted paintings.

Every quilt Susan has made since 1998 has represented a different card in Susan’s own tarot deck, which she has based on ordinary kitchen items. A tarot deck has 22 face cards and 56 minor cards. (The minor cards are suit cards and have evolved into today’s playing cards.) Susan explained, “Very early on I figured out my suits, way before I was actually getting into doing the suit or minor cards. Here’s how they line up, with playing card suits, tarot suits, my specific tarot suits, elements, and what they stand for, in that order:”

Hearts = Cups = Pyrex® Cups = Water = emotions, especially love
Clubs = Wands = Wooden Spoons = Fire = energy and spirit
Diamonds = Coins = Potholders = Earth = work and sustenance
Spades = Swords = Paring Knives = Air = thought and communication

Here’s something fun to think about. If you made your own tarot deck, what would your suits be?…Jan Magee, The Quilt Life

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