HARLEQUIN by Amanda Brittin


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Artist:  Amanda Brittin (In collaboration with King City Public School)

Purchaser:  King Parks, Recreation & Culture

Location:  King Heritage and Cultural Centre

2920 King Rd., King City


Meet Harlequin

The King Township Museum is developing a collaborative art and history project to bring to the King City Public School June 25th, 2015 when the torch for the Pan Am Games makes its way through the town.

Our concept for the life size horse statue to be painted by students is to make it resemble a ‘crazy’ or patchwork quilt.  By choosing this design the crazy quilt horse can be used to celebrate the history of this community and the personal stories of the school children, their schools, local events. and history of the area.


Quilting has a long history back to the time of ancient Egypt and earlier. Quilted clothing has been worn for centuries throughout Asia, Europe, Great Britain, America and beyond. Today quilting is popular in countries all over the world. Crazy quilting is a style influenced by Japanese art and ceramics that became hugely popular with the Victorians.

The concept of the “crazy quilt” is, historically, a type of quilt that uses the bits and pieces of fabric and old parts of clothing and blankets that a family would keep over generations and put into these wild quilts. It was a departure from the rigid geometric designs of the past and was often made up from exotic pieces of fabric, such as velvet, satin, tulle, or silk, and embellishments such as buttons, lace, ribbons, or embroidery that would not be seen on standard quilts. Simple embroidery stiches embellish the fabric – showing off techniques and lavish decoration.

Why we chose it:

It allows many school children and individuals to play a part inclusive and participatory allows for all variety of age and artistic skill.  Our school children will get the honour of painting on this horse and seeing their handiwork on display outside the Museum for years to come!

These horses are on display for the Pan Am Games throughout the Hills of the Headwaters and have been painted by local artists.

The quilt imagery is a metaphor for our community of King and Canada as a whole. As we put the design together bit by bit, using rather ordinary methods, the whole will definitely become greater than the sum of its parts.

Children can contribute their own ideas about what their section of the quilt will contain. Examples of ideas: maple leaf, trillium, hockey stick and puck, horse, flowers, trees, holding hands, night sky, and so on. The edge stitching will be done by the artist in a variety of traditional stitches and the squares will be a variety of colours

In this way the crazy quilt horse can be used to celebrate the history of this community and the personal stories of the school children and their schools and families.

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About Amanda Brittin

Amanda Brittin loves to introduce a creative element into the objects that are part of daily life. Whether it is a floor cloth underfoot, a piece of jewellery being worn, or a glass mosaic bowl on the dinner table, Amanda infuses humour and whimsy to her colourful pieces of functional art.