Caryl Bryer Fallert is internationally recognized for her award winning art quilts. She is best known for her organic, curved seam designs, her scintillating use of color, and her multilevel illusions of light and motion. Her attention to detail has earned her a reputation for fine craftsmanship as well as stunning designs.
In 2000 Caryl was selected as one of the 30 most influential quilt makers in the world, and her quilt Corona #2: Solar Eclipse was voted one of the 100 Most Important Quilts of the Twentieth Century. She was chosen for the Bernina Leadership Award in 2003 and in 2004 the readers of American Quilter Magazine voted her "All American Quilter." She is the 2006 recipient of the International Quilt Festival Silver Star (lifetime achievement) Award.
Since 1983, Caryl's work has been exhibited extensively throughout North America, Europe, Japan, and the Pacific Rim. She has had ninteen solo exhibitions, including a 1992 exhibition in Tokyo, Japan, and a 2000 exhibition in Burlington, Ontario, Canada.
Caryl is the only three-time winner of the coveted American Quilters Society Best of Show, Purchase Award. She was the 2009 International Quilt Festival Best of Show winner, and her quilts have also been awarded Best of Show in more a dozen other national and international exhibitions. In 1986, Caryl received the Masterpiece Quilt Award from the National Quilting Association. She has received the Master Awards for both Contemporary Artistry (2002 & 2006) and Machine Artistry (1997) from the International Quilt Association and Best Machine Workmanship from the American Quilters Society (2004 & 2009) and the Quilting the Quilt national exhibition (2003). Caryl has authored two books, and numerous workshops on CD-ROM. Her quilts have appeared in hundreds of national and international publications, including the covers of the 1987 and 1991 Quilt National Catalogs.
Caryl's work can be found in public, museum, corporate, and private collections in twenty-two states and seven foreign countries. Collections include: The Museum of Art & Design (NY,NY), Illinois State Museum, National Quilt Museum, International Quilt Study Center, Wilmette (IL) Public Library, Bradley University Library, Glendale (CA) Civic Center, Fidelity Investments Inc., Sprint, and Fritz Gegauf A.G. (Switzerland). In addition to her commission work, Caryl reserves time to create a body of very personal, experimental quilts.
Born in 1947 in Elgin, Illinois, Caryl graduated with a BA from Wheaton College in 1969. She also studied art at Illinois State University, College of DuPage, and University of Wisconsin.
Caryl was a lifelong resident of Northern Illinois, until 2005, when she moved to Paducah, Kentucky, to take part in that city's artist relocation program. In April of 2006, she opened the new Bryerpatch Studio shop, gallery and workshop center in Paducah KY's historic Lower Town Arts District.
Caryl finds her greatest joy designing and making her quilts and sharing what she has learned with students in her workshops and lectures, which have taken her to eleven countries on five continents. Her goal as a workshop leader is to help each student find the key to her/his personal creative style.
For as long as I can remember, I have expressed myself through artwork. My formal training was primarily in design, drawing, and studio painting. After many years of painting, sewing, and experimenting with other media, I discovered that fabric, as a fine art medium, best expressed my personal vision. Since 1982, I have been a quilt maker, i.e., my work is constructed from layers of fabric, stitched together with batting or other filler between the layers.
I love the tactile qualities of cloth, and the unlimited color range made possible by hand dyeing, and other surface design techniques. Virtually all of my quilts begin with white, 100% cotton fabric. The fabric is dyed, painted and printed to create the palette of colors and visual texture used in piecing and appliquéing my images. I am also making a series of quilts from images scanned and manipulated in the computer and printed directly on fabric with archival ink jet inks.
The focus of my work is on the qualities of color, line, and texture, which will engage the spirit and emotions of the viewer, evoking a sense of mystery, excitement, or joy. Illusions of movement, depth, and luminosity are common to most of my work. The inner glow is created by hand dyeing or painting my fabrics in gradual progressions from light to dark.
Both my geometric color studies, and my more organic, curved seam abstracts are inspired by visual impressions, collected in my travels, in my everyday life, and in my imagination. Although some of my quilts include pictorial images, my work is most often about seeing, experiencing, and imagining, rather than pictorial representation of any specific object or species. When recognizable objects appear, they represent the emotions and flights of fantasy evoked by those objects. My intention is to focus on positive energy and depict that in my work.
I intend for my quilts to be seen and enjoyed by others. It is my hope that they will lift the spirits and delight the eyes of those who see them. I am constantly learning and my work evolves as I find new images in my imagination and develop the techniques to create them in cloth. As a teacher I believe that the magic of art lies in our heads and in our hearts. I love sharing my techniques with others so they can share their magic with me.
My website has extensive documentation on my quilts including a listing of which ones are for sale. Then, we also carry kits, instructional videos on my techniques, fabric that I designed and many other sewing tools in our online catalog. Do visit!