July 8, 2013

Purchase Award at the Pennsylvania State Museum

I am very happy to report that I have won the  prestigious Purchase Award at Art of the State 2013, at the Pennsylvania State Museum in Harrisburg, PA.  My  Silk Mill #3 is now part of the permanent fine art collection of the Museum.  It is quite a significant honor, and you can see in the picture from opening night just how happy I am to receive it!

The organizers hold an awards ceremony just before the opening of the exhibit in the museum auditorium.  Here is the List of Winners. The purchase award was announced by Pennsylvania First Lady Susan Corbett, who is a supporter of the museum and of the arts.  You can watch a YouTube video of her presentation here:

The award was selected by the First Lady, Museum Director David Dunn, and PMHC Executive Director James Vaughn.  Their procedure was to tour the exhibit once it was installed, then each wrote down their top three potential picks.  Remarkably, they unanimously chose Silk Mill #3 as their top pick. 
The Museum was packed on opening night.  I spent most of the evening standing by my work and talking with people.  It was very exciting and a bit surreal.  I greatly appreciated all the good wishes and congratulations that flowed my way, and it was fun to explain a bit about my process and my subject matter to those who had questions.  And about that process--I am so glad that I am such a careful craftswoman, and always take great care to use only the best materials and practices in my work.  Had I know in advance that this quilt was going to be a museum piece, I would not have changed a thing. 
I did take some time to tour about and admire and enjoy the work on view.  This is an extremely competitive show--this year about 7% of the work submitted was accepted, and I can attest to its diversity and quality.  It’s an excellent show and well worth a visit if you find yourself in the area.  You can view it online in this Flickr album. The Museum also has a Facebook Page.

I hope you can join me on Friday, July 19th, at 6:30 p.m., when The State Museum will host a casual insider’s tour of “Art of the State” with myself and State Museum Director David Dunn. The program is free and open to the public as part of “3rd in the Burg”,  a monthly celebration of Harrisburg’s art and entertainment.

A few more good links--here’s my friend Wendy Edsall-Kerwin’s blog post about the Art of the State 2013 Opening, including her fabulous Ebb and Flow bowl.  And the Lancaster Sunday News had a nice article about the award and the exhibit.

The prizes for this exhibit are not announced until the awards ceremony on opening night, but they do phone up the award winners to let them know so they can make plans to attend. I was on vacation in Minnesota, on a hiking trail with sketchy cell service at Gooseberry Falls State Park, when I got a voicemail with the news. This was my view as I learned of my good fortune:
To read more about Silk Mill #3, the other quilts in the series, and the building they are based on, click the Silk Mill tab at the top or follow this link

And now, after all that excitement, it’s back to work in the studio for me!  This is my mantra:  do the work, do the work, do the work.  It all flows from there.


Morna said...

Sue, Congrats on acceptance to the exhibit and the purchase award. You know how much I love your work. Really enjoyed the story behind the piece and the coverage of the ceremony. Morna

Pat Bishop said...


You must be so proud, this is a great accomplishment. Your hard work has paid off and continues to do so due to your exemplary work ethic. You inspire!

Pat Bishop

Allison Aller said...

You are so deserving of this and I am really happy for you!

Jacquei Scuitto said...

I've been following your work for some time and am so pleased to have seen your progress and success over the past few years. Congratulations on the recognition you have received and I look forward to seeing your next projects.

Karen S Musgrave said...

You so deserve this and I am thrilled for you that it happened! BRAVO!

Anni Matsick said...

Congratulations again on this well-deserved award; an obviously wise choice by our First Lady and museum staff. A highlight of our opening night visit was seeing you standing near the piece, glowing!

Cynthia Wenslow said...

Congratulations, Sue! I've long been a fan of your work and am thrilled that you've gotten this recognition.

Jeanne Marklin said...

Sue, it's a wonderful piece and a well deserved honor! Congratulations, and thank you for helping to make art quilts even more accepted as ART!!!

Jean M. Judd said...

Wonderful news on the Purchase Award, Sue! Definitely well deserved and a wonderful venue for it to live out its life. I toured it last October.

A very competitive exhibition in itself and a real tribute to your work as it stood out enough to be selected over 93% of the submissions.

Enjoy the moment, and now back to the studio!

Sue Reno said...

I'm so lucky to be a part of such a supportive fiber arts community. Thank you for all your kind comments. I am enjoying the moment, and I am already hard at work again in the studio--I love what I do, and can't imagine a better way to spend my time.

Valerie the Pumpkin Patch Quilter said...

Wow - that is amazing, congratulations!

Ruth Powers said...

Wonderful news! Congratulations, it's beautiful!!

Martha said...

Sue, For those of us who have long been admirers of your work, this award really makes us smile! You are spreading the word that our fiber art is ART. Enjoy the festivities and tour. Congratulations!
Martha Ginn

Anonymous said...

Brava! Well done, Sue, and well deserved. And I echo my thanks for your success at showing that fiber art is Art. Franki

Therese said...

This is gorgeous!