From the information posted on the wall next to the quilt at the Museum of Wisconsin Art:
“On April 24, 2013 a garment factory in Bangladesh collapsed killing 1,127 workers and injuring 2,500. Following this tragedy, a conversation quickly began at MOWA to see if we could exhibit Terese Agnew’s Portrait of a Textile Worker, constructed from 30,000 clothing labels stitched together over two years (completed in 2005). The quilt is based on a photograph of a young textile worker in Bangladesh by Charles Kernaghan, Director of Global Labor and Human Rights.
The disaster at Rana Plaza in Bangladesh has raised awareness worldwide where much of our clothing in the United States comes from, who makes it, and under what conditions. MOWA wants to contribute to the conversation by displaying Agnew’s work. When you see Portrait of a Textile Worker, we’re quite sure you will never see clothing labels quite the same way again.”