British-born textile artist & quilter, Kate Cox, featured in Episode 605: Improvisational Landscapes, needs your help. Kate, who now lives in Colorado and is known to be inspired by the American landscape, has a serious O-1 Visa issue. This is an Artist visa. Apparently, the US Embassy doesn't believe being a renowned quilter and textile artist is real art. Capt'n John is convinced that if it was a man who painted on canvas the visa would have gone through unquestioned.
Kate's story (paraphrased):
I was in London for the first time in 7 years to visit my children and I had to go renew my O-1 visa at the US Embassy. I have a lawyer in Denver who deals with all this and all the paperwork had been submitted and we did not expect any problems.
However, when I got there for my interview it was very clear from the outset that the woman interviewing me was not friendly to say the least. She began by asking me what I did,
I said, "Fiber Artist."
"What's that?" she said.
"Textile Art," I replied, "making art from fabrics, fibers, other mediums."
So she said, "You mean 'Quilting'!" in a very scathing voice. It went downhill from there.
She eventually told me that she was recommending that my visa be revoked because my work was not of a high enough 'standard' because I could not sell it for $100,000s of dollars.
Even though Kate creates and teaches quilting and works with the Denver Art Museum, she is now being asked to pack up her goods and return to Great Britain.
TQS is starting a petition to help Kate stay in America and to let them know that our art is to be respected.
Kate's episode, Improvisational Landscapes, is open to all TQS Members for FREE.