Catherine Whall Smith . . . Happy New Year 2019 – it’s going to be a busy year!

Since 2019 will be busy with several shows in the works. I decided to start thinking about which pieces I will be hanging for the month of February at the the Art Corridor on the Saint Raphael Campus of the Yale New Haven Hospital.  The Art Corridor shows a wide variety of art and artists. The 2019 exhibits continue to exemplify how creative expression can make a powerful contribution to the healing process.   Twenty-four local artists will have their work showcased in the Auxiliary’s Art Corridor during 2019. They were selected by the Art Corridor Committee, chaired by Jane Snaider, with involvement from Andrew Wolf, New Haven Director of Arts, Culture and Tourism.  The Yale New Haven Hospital is located at 20 York Street, New Haven, CT .

I think the pieces in my  “Transfusion” series will work nicely for my part of the month long February 2019 show.  This series has large, medium, and small pieces.  It is a tribute to my father who died suddenly almost 40 years ago of a massive heart attack. Though his physical body is gone his spirit has definitely passed on like a blood transfusion into his children, grand-children, and great grand-children. This photo below shows “Transfusion #4 (40H x 48W) hung on a wall in our home with two of the mounted 12 x 12 ‘s in the “PARTS” series.  These “Parts” are duplicate sections of the larger piece.  I’m thinking a lot of these 12 x 12’s hung together on a wall might be interesting.  So far I have completed 8 parts – so I will need to complete a few more of these hand-stitched pieces for the most visual impact.  Time to get busy as 2019 will be here before you know it!  No Time to Waste!

   Have a Healthy, Happy New Year 2019!!!

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . admits the color blue is working it’s way into her art!

The color BLUE is working it’s way onto my studio design wall. Blue is obviously the theme for the Smith’s Christmas tree this year.  Last year’s fake white tree has been taken out of the attic – a variety of BLUE Xmas balls were purchased and hung – some silver ornaments were added – DONE! So for some reason I started to get the urge to visit “the blue fabric stash” in my studio.  Here are some of my choices; Like most artists I am always thinking of “the next piece”. – – the idea of “Transformation/Blue Bloods” has been forming.  It won’t be a large piece like my present “Transfusion in TWO PARTS” – which is almost complete – but smaller maybe 36H x 24W.  I plan to share some of my progress.  But for now there is still some Christmas shopping to be done, so that there will actually be some more presents under our “Blue” tree.

How about you is that TREE UP YET!!! Merry Christmas!

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Catherine Whall Smith wonders . . . Do you have one of these?

It’s 2018 and this is my 9th yearly Thanksgiving post. Here is our dining room table almost ready for our family and friends. Those of you who host the yearly Thanksgiving feast know that it takes several trips to the grocery store and a few days to get all the food prepped, cooked, and ready to serve. Along with these tasks I have also been hand quilting my latest Transfusion piece. Titled “Transfusion in TWO PARTS” – each section is roughly 30 x 72 with several 6 inch strips that randomly connect the sections. The size of this piece continues my reflective journey in my Art “Does Size Matter?”. My hope is that the size of this piece will matter – as I plan to find a show with size specifications large enough that I will be able to enter this piece.  I will keep you posted on that idea.

My Thanksgiving turkeys this year will also be in two parts; One Whole Turkey and One Whole Turkey Breast.   Thursday morning I will put the whole turkey in my “Hand=Me=Down=Family=Heirloom=Turkey=Roasting=Pan” that was a gift to me many years ago. It cooks a perfect turkey with very little to do but just uncover the turkey towards the end of the process to bake the skin to a golden brown. I haven’t seen anything like it in the stores so I just decided to do a google search and there it was on EBay.  WEAR-EVER 5P LARGE ALUMINUM THANKSGIVING HAM TURKEY ROAST ROASTING PAN US $85.50 and here is what it looks like in the EBAY ad. It looks in very good condition.  You may want to consider it for your next Turkey dinner. A Happy Thanksgiving to You, Your Family, and Your Friends! Stay warm it’s suppose to be the coldest Thanksgiving on record.      Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!!





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Catherine Whall Smith . . . shares a day at the New England Quilt Museum

On Saturday, we headed up to the New England Quilt Museum in Lowell, MA to view for the first time “Explorations, Journeys in Creativity – The Quilt Artist’s Studio”.  This art exhibit is being presented in two parts:  In each show 12 of the 24 artists will display a 30″ x 50″ art quilt showcasing the signature technique for which they have been selected.

Show #1 October 2 – December 30, 2018: and Show #2 (this is the corrected date from one of my earlier posts) April 3 – June 23, 2019 – Artist reception: April 7th, 2019 @ 1 p.m.  Over 100 people attended the opening in a room that contained the art of 12 fiber artists that were juried into this show.  Each piece was accompanied by a 50 x 30 inch banner that was in the artists words and contained pictures of their studio and their process. Note: A book that includes a six page spread on each of the 24 artists is for sale in the Museum store.

Pamela Weeks, Binney Family Curator of the NE Quilt Museum states about this show: “I’m excited to exhibit art quilts with companion panels prepared by the artists explaining the techniques. It was my idea with this exhibit to not just explain the work of artists, but perhaps to make the art more accessible and encourage more quilters to “work outside the box”.   Nancy Turbitt, and Allison Wilbur members of SAQA MA/RI should be congratulated for their curatorial efforts in the coordination of this exciting show.  Participants include: Agusta Agustsson, Sue Bleiweiss, Ann Brauer, Diane Cadrain, Sue Colossi, Judy Dales, Janis Doucette, Diane English, Janice Jones, Mary-Ellen Latino, Marya Lowe, Jeanne Marklin, Valerie Maser-Flanagan, Sharon McCartney, Suzanne Munroe, Madalene Murphy, Sue Polansky, Wen Redmond, Cheryl Rezendes, Diane Sheckells, Catherine Whall Smith, Sarah Ann Smith, Timna Tarr, and Nancy Turbitt.

Along with “Explorations 1: Inside the Quilt Artist’s Studio”; On-going exhibits include: The Fabric Collage of Susan Carlson, thru – December 30;  and, Liberty and Justice: The Satirical Art of Salley Mavor, thru – December 30.

Check out to obtain more information on several events including some Brown Bag Lunches;  a Gallery Talk and a 2-Day Workshop. The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday, 10 – 4. Maybe it’s time for that Autumn Foliage Drive, Massachusetts is almost peak at this time of year!

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . thinks it time for an up-date and a reminder

UP-DATE:  My last post on August 23rd, 2018 included this statement; Done! Always a good feeling, because now I can start thinking about where I might enter “Get Me Out of Here . . Please!”.  Well I did enter this piece and it was juried into the all media show at the West Hartford Art League in West Hartford, CT. The A SENSE OF PLACE: LAND, SEA AND SKY show runs from September 13th – 30th. There is still time to see this show – so call (860) 231-8019 for the gallery hours.

REMINDER:  Explorations: Journeys in Creativity:  The Quilt Artist’s Studio – at the New England Quilt Museum (NEQM) 18 Shattuck Street, Lowell, Massachusetts. This show contains masterfully creative artwork by 24 professional quilt artists who are members of the New England regions of Studio Art Quilt Associates, Inc. (SAQA).  This exhibit is presented in two parts: Show #1 October 2-December 30, 2018. Artist’s Reception and Artist Lightning Talks will take place on Saturday, October 13th at 1pm. “Transfusion #6” and a Lightning Talk by Catherine Smith will be included in Show #1. For more information;

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . is done with “Get Me Out of Here – Please!”

Done! Always a good feeling, because now I can start thinking about where I might enter “Get Me Out of Here . . Please!”.   Below is a picture of my studio as I start to get the lights ready to photograph the piece. And below is the finished piece.  All cotton materials (24H x 36W) – hand quilted. The photo that I used for this piece was taken at a local farm. I enlarged sections of the jpeg. image and applied it to treated cotton with a laser jet printer.  So if you are done with the “Back to School “ shopping and just want to “Get out of wherever you are” Our Chaplin Street Multi-Family Tag Sale is this Saturday, August 25th from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. – Check out 44 Chaplin Street where I will be offering something for everyone including; antique chairs, a kayak, household items, lots and lots of Baby Car Seats, and some of my smaller Fiber Art pieces. I’m looking forward to seeing what my neighbors come up with!

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . wonders what is the “Right amount of Wrong”

Since my art includes “improvisational piecing” – NO PATTERN – there is really no right or wrong design to the piece I am working on.  Notice I didn’t say “good or bad” design.  It happens – we all know that some of our art connects and some doesn’t.  When we enter juried shows there are the accepted and declined pieces.  So what was the difference? – One of my theories is that the piece of art should have “JUST THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF WRONG”.  I recently came across this ad for Cosmopolitan Las Vegas a unique luxury resort and casino.

It said it all – I think I want to go there to find out what is the RIGHT amount of WRONG.  But for now I will continue working on this studio piece that is presently on my design wall, and give it the RIGHT amount of WRONG!  Feel free to let me know your thoughts on Art that has the RIGHT amount of WRONG. Looking forward to hearing from you! .

Note:  The first piece in this series “Get Me Out of Here” (12H x 12W) has been juried into the 2018 – Connecticut Women Artists (CWA) – 89th Annual National Open Juried Exhibition – EXHIBITION DATES: Saturday, September 1- Friday, September 28, 2018. LOCATION: Barnes-Franklin Gallery, Building #600, at Tunxis Community College, Farmington, CT.  Opening Reception on Saturday, September 8, 2018 from 2-4 pm. 

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . continues the “Stay Tuned” on “Explorations: Journeys in Creativity”

On, April 27th I posted information on “Explorations: Journeys in Creativity, The Quilt Artist’s Studio”.  The aim of this exhibit is to educate the viewer about particular art quilting techniques and each artists passion for their creative process in their studio.  Included in this April 27th post was a picture of my studio design wall showing the start of  “Transfusion #6”.

Today, on June 27th – just 2 months later I am happy to share that the piece is complete!! The fabric for the back has been selected and the three layers (top, batting, and back) have been basted together on a flat surface, actually my dining room table.  Lining up the middle of the top and the center of the back are key to my signature hand quilting technique.  This technique uses the printed design as my guide lines for my hand stitching.  Lois Palmer, a certified quilt appraiser is in the process of appraising it before I send it on to the New England Quilt Museum  (NEQM) in Lowell, MA.  The first opening will showcase 12 of the 24 selected artists on October 13th, 2018; and the second opening has been moved to April 6th, 2019.  The timing of the completion on my piece is perfect.  I will be heading down to the R. I. shore  for a week and to celebrate the July 4th holiday.  Oh, and I just packed something to hand quilt while sitting on the beach.  Happy Independence Day!  It’s going to be a GREAT ONE!


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Catherine Whall Smith . . . joined Lois Palmer for the WTHM Appraisal Day

Lois Palmer a certified Quilt Appraiser, enjoys the “surprise factor” of what she will discover each time she encounters a quilt. Saturday she was at the Windham Textile & History Museum (WTHM) to start the appraisal process of several new and antique quilts.  Here she is with a recent donation to WTHM by Wayne Norman, the local radio host of 1400AM and 95.3FM This piece has lots of visual impact and lots of history – can’t wait to read the final appraisal. Eventually it will be packed, stored properly and join the museum’s antique quilt collection.  Hopefully, at a future museum quilt show it will be displayed along with some of the other gems that the WTHM owns. I took advantage of the opportunity to ask Lois a few questions including – was there a favorite piece(s) that she has appraised.  Her answer was an immediate “Antique chintz four poster bed quilts dating between 1830 – 40’s; and Contemporary Art Quilts that show the creativity of today’s fiber artists”.   How about you – do you have a favorite quilt? It may even be one of the pieces in the SAQACT’s “Local Color #3: Inspired By Science” quilt show that is on display at WTHM in Willimantic, CT  The show ends on Sunday, July 8th, 2018.

For more information on Certified Quilt Appraisers, please visit this link on the Studio Art Quilt Associates website.   


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Catherine Whall Smith . . . is doing a little “Plein Air” quilting!

During the past few weeks I have kept busy in my studio finishing the top for the “Explorations: Journeys in Creativity” show. Since my unique hand quilting techniques were selected to share through journaling my process, I had to first make the top that I will hand quilt.  To date, I have been documenting the entire process not just my hand quilting.  Here are a few photos of the top as I proceed with the initial auditioning of the fabrics for “Transfusion #7” to some of the final tweaking.    

Photo above is the initial auditioning of a few fabrics for possible placement. And below is a photo of two sections that were completed and are now ready to be sewn together.

And here I am getting to the end of the possibilities of my design process.

Once the top is complete then there is the  challenge of picking out the fabric for the back of the quilt – which will determine the quilting lines that will highlight sections of the quilt top.  Speaking of quilting, since today was such a beautiful day – I decided to head outside and do a little “Plein Air” quilting. Here I am enjoying the fresh air! 

I will keep you posted on any show up dates but as of now this show will be held at the New England Quilt Museum (NEQM), in Lowell, MA . The show of 24 artists will take place in two parts, with 12 selected artists in each show.  The first show opens at NEQM from October 3 – December 28. The Artists Reception is Saturday, October 13 at 1pm.  The second group will be from April 2 – June 23. (This is a change of date) The Artist Reception will be held on Saturday, April 6, 2019 at 1pm.  As of now I do not know which show my work will be in – but both shows will be equally exciting!!


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