Catherine Whall Smith
After many years of working in the field of Education and retiring from the University of Connecticut’s Neag School of Education in 2008, I re-entered the world of quilts, and realized how much I enjoyed the tactile sensations of needle, thread, and fabric.
As a visual artist, I use patterns, colors, and emerging lines as the themes of my quilts. My favorite way to define a shape is with a simple line. This line enables me to explore the spaces created where line meets line or lines overlap lines. I strive to challenge the viewer’s eye with the pairing of shapes and lines that create motion and juxtapositions that result in vibrant quilts. These lines are the voice in my quilts.
Presently, the quilts that I create are strongly influenced by my rural surroundings. Everyday activities are incorporated into my art. My photos record the cutting of hay fields being prepared, rolled, and packed in white plastic, then stacked like sculptures. These images incorporated into my quilts make a statement about the seasonal changes that are occurring around me.
My "Hay . . . Keep Your Distance" series which includes "Sunny Day in the Hay Field" and "Cows Got Milk and Plasma" started during the early months of the Covid-19 Pandemic. I became hooked, so six months later I have completed #12. The pair of American Gold Finch's in each piece reinforces the idea that we should practice social distancing.