Amelia Bennett (Hazel, AL 1914–2002) started working in the fields in southwestern Alabama with her parents when she was eight years old. It was also in her childhood that she began watching her mother make quilts. Her mother taught her how to sew by tearing apart old pants and letting her practice sewing the strips together. On one occasion, Bennett did so well at sewing the strips of pants together that her mother backed it and made it into a quilt. The pride that Bennett felt because of this accomplishment carried her into a future of quilt-making. She sewed with her daughter (Sally Bennett Jones) and her sister in-law (Geraldine Westbrook), and the three developed a similar style that used strips of fabric, often from old clothes. Her economical use of repurposed materials and straight lines make for modernly stark and meaningful quilts.
Scrap Up is currently on view in Intersections in American Art.