San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles

520 South First Street, San Jose, CA 95113 - United States

408-971-0323

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The first museum in the United States to focus exclusively on quilts and textiles as an art form, the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles will celebrate its 45th anniversary in 2022. With compelling exhibitions of contemporary and historical textiles, engaging gallery walks, artist talks for adults, and a highly successful educational outreach program, we aim to increase the public’s awareness, understanding, and appreciation of quilts, textiles and fiber art as a form of artistic and cultural expression that people worldwide have practiced for thousands of years. The Museum’s permanent collection consists of some 1200 quilts, garments and world textiles, and a research library of more than 500 books on the history and making of quilts and textiles. In addition, the Museum boasts an ambitious exhibition schedule featuring contemporary artists working across fiber art traditions.

Cloth is at the core of human experience. Every culture throughout history has had a textile tradition through which people learned about and sustained their social, civic and religious rituals. As largely a woman’s tradition, quilting became a primary vehicle for women’s social, political and artistic expression when other forms of expression were not available to them. It was during the 1970s, when the women's movement and the feminist art movement came to full flower, that a new breed of artists, often formally educated, began choosing fiber as a fine art medium, challenging assumptions about both the intent and the content of textile art forms. In 1977, a group of visionary women from the Santa Clara Valley Quilt Association founded what would become the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles. Now, almost 45 years later, the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles is more relevant than ever.

Exhibits

Come see More Impact: Climate Change, curated by Deborah Corsini and Alex Friedman, featuring tapestries from members of Tapestry Weavers West that reflect on our changing global environment and the detrimental consequences of climate change, woven in a variety of tapestry techniques and styles.

Tapestry Weavers West is a regional organization of tapestry weavers founded in 1985. It is currently a group of 85 active weavers based in the San Francisco Bay Area, California, and also includes members that span from British Columbia, Canada to San Diego, CA and several states beyond the West Coast. Members exhibit nationally and internationally, teach tapestry weaving and are advocates for the art of contemporary weaving practices.

Please note that 1st Street will be closed to motorized vehicles between the intersection of 280 and E. Santa Clara Street due to Viva Calle.

Public Transportation

Nearest VTA Bus Stops are located at 1st & Reed, 2nd & William, and 2nd & San Salvador. Nearest VTA Light Rail is at the Convention Center Station. Visit vta.org or 511.org for more information.

Parking

Metered parking is available in front of the Museum. The nearest public parking lots are located at San Salvador & Market, the Convention Center garage, and the CSJ lot under I-280 at First Street. The CSJ lot is open 24 hours. It costs $5 on weekdays (6am-6pm), is free weekdays after 6pm, weekends, and holidays. For more details, visit parksj.org.

Bike/Bike Share/Electric Scooter

Bicycle parking is available in front of the museum, as well as at the corner of 1st & William Street. Bike Share stations are located throughout the Downtown San Jose area. Visiting the museum via Electric Scooter is also encouraged, but be sure to park your scooter responsibly. Learn more about micro-mobility options here.

Participation in Museum Day is open to any tax-exempt or governmental museum or cultural venue on a voluntary basis. Smithsonian magazine encourages museum visitation, but is not responsible for and does not endorse the content of the participating museums and cultural venues, and does not subsidize museums that participate.