by JANET MANDELSTAM
Carol Bridges invites fellow travelers on “a spiritual journey along the artist’s path.” Through her quilts—which look like tapestries and are often embellished with embroidery and beads—and the classes and workshops she teaches, Bridges says, “I want my work to uplift people’s spirits.”
The Brown County artist’s Enchanted Landscape and Healing quilts are often inspired by the practice of living in harmony with nature. She speaks of the healing quilts as “making a prayer rather than saying a prayer.”
“Quilts can wrap your soul in comfort every time you gaze upon them,” Bridges says.
The artist, 78, teaches classes and workshops that blend creativity and spirituality. These sessions regularly begin with meditation, a daily practice for Bridges. Then, she often has participants create collages, an exercise that she says, “brings out hidden aspects of your soul.”
“I ask them to imagine their future and make a collage of that,” Bridges says. “It just takes magazines and scissors. Everyone can do some kind of art.”
Bridges’ facility with needle and thread began early. “My mother and grandmother did a lot of sewing,” she says. Bridges produced a clothing line in the 1970s and, for a while, painted in oil. “Then I went back to cloth.”
Her quilts are available on her website, artquiltswithsoul.com, and on commission. Bridges says that gratitude is essential to all of her work. “I say ‘thank you’ all day long—for life.”