Broken Star Block Quilt, artist unidentified. Courtesy of the American Folk Art Museum.

Free admission (all visitors, all hours)

The American Folk Art Museum has been at the forefront of the movement to bring recognition to quilts as a major art form with deep roots in American life and experience. The museum’s collection, featured in the new exhibition WALL POWER! is especially distinctive for unique, highly individualized expressions in this medium that is both yielding and unforgiving, challenging the maker to test the limits imposed by cutting and piecing bits of fabric. The museum is renowned for its in-depth holdings of Amish quilts, double wedding ring, appliqué quilts, and more. In 2018, the museum received a gift of 21 quilts from Werner and Karen Gundersheimer that introduces new patterns into the collection. Gathered over a period of decades, as the couple scoured eastern Pennsylvania, and then the Midwest and the Southern United States, the quilts are graphically striking examples that embody what the couple call “wall power.” Packing a tough visual punch, the textiles hold space and defy the deceptive softness of their nature.