Cookie Washington

Cookie Washington is an artist, curator and folklorist who led a sold-out art quilting presentation at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in 2023.

In addition to her ongoing studio art practice, she has curated & produced exhibitions. In 2001 Cookie saw a need to create spaces and opportunities for black textile artists to exhibit and grow.

Since then, she has judged, organized and curated numerous exhibitions that have traveled to museums and galleries around America. Ms. Washington’s themed exhibits have included,

celebrating the 150th anniversary of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, Zora Neale Hurston, Mermaids and Merwomen in Black Folklore, and a deeply personal tribute exhibition

honoring the victims of the terrorist attack on the pastors and congregants of Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston and a follow on exhibit a year later titled: A Dialogue in Black and White.

For the last 16 years, she has been the curator of the annual African American Fiber Art Exhibition, partnering with the North Charleston Cultural Arts department.

The exhibit has traveled through the South Carolina State Museum’s Traveling Exhibition Program and is wildly popular.

Cookie’s art quilts have been featured in Quiltfolk Magazine Issue #14, in three documentary films about African American Art Quilters. “The Wayshowers”, which she shared executive producer credit on, with Susan Scott Hester, and the film “Skin Quilt” by Lauren Cross, as well as the 2020’s “Gratitude”, a short film by Gavin Shelon, and is quickly becoming a frequent podcast guest. Her quilts are vibrant story quilts she weaves to share the history of her people.

In June, 2023 Cookie taught a class for beginning quilters exploring the use of African Fabrics at Kindred Spirits: a Convergence of African-American Quilters in Durham, NC (June 15-17, 2023).

Cookie teaches classes to novice quilters, to keep quilting alive for new generations. Because of her significant influence on arts and culture in the Carolinas, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture invited her to Black Carolina, a retreat designed for creatives, which took place in July, 2023 in Asheville, NC.

Summit Session(s)


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