The Westbury Quilt, 1900–1903 Tasmania, cotton, 223 x 191 cm
This patchwork and appliqué quilt is embroidered in the medallion style with red cotton squares sewn together with thick white thread in a raised technique – a reversal of the usual red stich on white. The central panel features an embroidered portrait of Queen Victoria, with roses, thistles and shamrocks symbolising England, Scotland and Ireland. The Misses Hampson (Jane and Mary) worked the quilt on their farm, hence its imagery of cows, horses and roosters – all with pet names. A lone kangaroo indicates its Australian origins. The imagery is assured in its observations of family and farm folklife, the identification of its makers with Britain, and their moral preoccupations.
Purchased through the Australian Textiles Fund, 1990