Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Quilt inspired by ‘Last Supper’ to be shown at church

By Michael Mager/Features Editor

In 1498, Leonardo Da Vinci completed one of the great masterpieces of the Renaissance, “The Last Supper.” Five hundred years later, retired dentist Donald E. Locke of Waxahachie completed his own masterpiece — a quilted replica of the scene from Jesus Christ’s life.

Locke and his quilt will appear Saturday at Ascension Lutheran Church, 205 S. Ridgeway Drive in Cleburne.

The quilt was a labor of love for the retired dentist. It is comprised of 51,816 pieces of one-inch-square fabric. Locke used 350 different fabrics, many of which were hand-dyed to the desired tint. The work measures 67 inches high by 183 inches long.

To recreate Da Vinci’s masterpiece, Locke enlarged a computer photo of the work until it was large enough for him to see the individual pixels. The fabric squares were then matched to the pixels and sewn together. The labor of love took Locke 2 1/2 years to complete with an estimated 1,200 hours of work poured into the project.

Completed in 1999, the backing was then hand-dyed by Joy Press of Godley and quilted by Linda Taylor of Melissa.

As with a digital photo, when viewed close up, the work looks like an abstract design of boxes.

As the viewer steps farther away, the beauty of Da Vinci’s work and Locke’s homage come into focus.

To honor Locke and his work, a brunch will take place at the church at 10 a.m. Anyone wishing to come and see the “Supper quilt” should come by at about 11 a.m.

To attend the brunch, call Hazel Jacobs at 817-295-3972.

Michael Mager can be reached at 817-645-2441,

ext. 2338 or

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