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HEY hey.

After 20 years as a professional painter, Sarah Atlee pivoted to focus on quilting as her primary art form. Atlee is known for her colorful and geometric compositions, rich with energy and free-form texture. Using improvisational patchwork and reclaimed textiles, Atlee creates mindful, joyful quilts that are at home on both art gallery walls and your cozy couch. Visitors are always welcome at sarahatlee.com.

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Download Sarah Atlee’s resume (PDF)

Artist Statement: Quilting

I am at a critical juncture in my art practice. For many years I have built a career on painting, exploring a variety of abstract and realist techniques. Having come to a place in painting where the medium no longer challenges me, I have shifted my focus to fiber art, quilting in particular. I now dedicate my full-time studio practice to exploring quilting as an art form.

Working with found, reclaimed, and donated fabrics is crucial to my practice. I source materials from what is around me – discarded clothing or other textiles, local thrift store finds, even antique market bargains. My experience using donated fabrics has taught me that even the unlikeliest materials can work together, if you’re willing to be surprised. In this way I can keep fabric out of the landfill while breaking down barriers around traditional expectations of quilting and fine art. By practicing an ancient art born of necessity, I connect with our shared past while reflecting on self-sufficiency in consumer culture.

Artist Statement: Still Life

Have you ever looked down at a plate of food and said, “This is too beautiful to eat”? Me too. That’s the moment I capture in my paintings.

I’m lucky to have so much wonderful food in my life. From dry-aged steak to shrimp that came out of the gulf this morning, from juicy organic peaches to more taco trucks than you can twang a steel guitar at. And don’t forget a rich, full-bodied red wine, unless a steaming espresso is more your style.

I get to experience these things first hand. But why should I keep it to myself? My mission is to share these mouth-watering delights with you through exquisitely crafted paintings. Your plate is my palette. My canvas is a feast for your eyes. Enjoy!

Artist Statement: Abstraction

Sarah Atlee’s geometric abstractions in paint and paper are infused with the play between spontaneity and perfection. “I am increasingly influenced by modern quiltmaking, balancing the dual impulses of precision and improvisation – making perfect versus making do.” She explores the pure pleasure of placing color next to color, building a composition one stroke (or stitch) at a time, and honoring artisans of the past and present by building on tradition.