Each year, dozens of quilting enthusiasts migrate an hour south of Grand Junction Colorado to Gateway Canyons. They gather together for the Alegre Retreat, the premier conference for devotees the fabric arts. Beginning in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1994, Katie Pasquini Masopust has successfully organized the retreat with the goal of highlighting the variety of quilting methods and specialties in this rich branch of the fabric arts.
Faced with an awkward potential change in venue a few years back, Katie was faced with a decision to either lose a level of intimacy - a key element of the retreat – or close it down. Maureen Hendricks, an attendee who has missed only one retreat since inception, was dismayed. Maureen is dedicated supporter of fabric arts and was not willing to let this important gathering disappear and with her husband John Hendricks, Founder and Chairman of Discovery Communications, the number one nonfiction media company, and creator of Discovery Channel, planned a rescue. As a result, Alegre Retreat was moved to its permanent home at Gateway Canyons.
The Hendricks vision for Gateway Canyons is to establish an intimate destination where life-long learning mixes with enjoyment of the red rock country of Southwestern Colorado, thereby feeding people’s curiosity and thirst for knowledge. A perfect match of education and intimacy, Alegre Retreat was reborn. Katie continues as both master of ceremonies and instructor, with additional world-class artists and teachers joining her in this pinnacle quilting event.
This year Alegre Retreat will span April 19th to April 24th. Linda Colsh is teaching "Work Simple, Work Small", Katie Pasquini Masopust teaching "Ghost Layers and Color Washes", Joe Cunningham will be teaching his workshop entitled "Five Lines" and Jane Dunnewold is "Improve Design! For Digital Printing on Fabric"
Attendees will choose to study for five days with one instructor and hear lectures from all at the lunches and dinners. In addition, participants will enjoy a vendor night where they setup their own table and sell their creations.
Wednesday, April 22nd attendees will have a luncheon lecture with Katie Pasquini Masopust “Discoveries in a year”. Katie will talk about her journeys, discoveries, and quilts in the Alegre Calendar year, from April to April.
Friday, April 24th there will be a closing banquet and lecture with Linda Colsh. “Art Across Oceans - Illustrated Lecture" , a retrospective of Linda’s art quilt career tracking her artistic journey not only from California to Korea to Europe to Maryland, but also from a full-color palette to her current neutral “shades of gray.” Selecting pieces from her own body of work to illustrate where she finds inspiration, Linda will also feature selected work by Europeans who might not be well-known in the US but who figure regularly in the top exhibitions there.
For those short on time, we will offer a focused Lecture Series. On Monday, April 20th, Alegre will host a lunch and lecture from Jane Dunnewold " How I See It ", Reflections on the accumulation of bits and pieces that make us who we are-each fascinating creatures with stories to tell. offer a tour of the Gateway Colorado Auto Museum, provide entry into the quilt exhibit and participants vendor mall, and shopping with High Fashion Fabrics. The day will close with a dinner lecture from Joe Cunningham "What It Looks Like". Joe will show his strategies for creating a quilt, designing, developing the theme and the making of the work itself. His primary aim when designing a quilt is to invent a way of working that will allow a complete statement of his theme while also allowing him the freedom for moment to moment improvisation. He will show how his quilt result as much from actions as ideas. The lecture will be illustrated with examples of art and quilts from which he has drawn inspiration, as well as examples of his own work.
In addition, attendees will be offered spa discounts from Gateway Canyons. All of this for only 75.00 for the day.
With so many ways to enjoy Alegre Retreat, the premier art quilt conference at Gateway Canyons, Katie is hoping to give all who wish to participate a chance. She hopes that not only will Alegre provide an enriching experience for her committed quilters, but also that by reaching out more widely, the group will be able to broaden awareness of the fabric arts and deepen the quilting community.
Those who attended last year know to prepare for an unforgettable experience, first time attendants expect to be wowed! Gateway Canyons, Colorado is a land of stunning views, magnificent rock formations and soul calming rivers. It is an area that has long inspired travelers, from the Indians of yesteryear to the pioneers (and quilters!) of today. This setting, combined with the resort’s mission to celebrate the finest in Fiber Arts, makes Gateway Canyons the perfect host for the Alegre Retreat. You’ll also find all the pampering and/or adventures necessary to complete the perfect learning vacation!