Author, Quilt Historian
Interviewed by Elizabeth Townsend Gard
Barbara Brackman is the genius behind the Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns. This is a book that documents when standard blocks first appeared in the U.S. in a published format. It's brilliant. The book was published by the American Quilter's Society in 1993. It is still very relevant and important, both for quilters trying to date or choose a quilt block, but also (for me) in establishing a common pool of blocks in a systematic manner.
For this project, it is especially interesting. How many of the blocks are still under copyright? How would they be under copyright? Are these blocks like facts -- not copyrightable? Even if some of the publications are still under copyright, Barbara's work is a perfect example of a transformative fair use. She is using the blocks to catalog blocks, and not sell magazines, or create patterns, etc. And, my question - are there new blocks being created that should be added, or is the Encylopedia a static thing? What happens when new blocks are created? Should they be protected by copyright?
(click image to take you to Amazon)