Member Spotlight: Cynthia Levis

cynthia levis photo

Meet Cynthia:

Cynthia Levis is a fiber artist from Lincoln, Nebraska. Her work has been shown in exhibitions across the country and she is a member of Noyes Gallery where she sells her work, including commissions. Cynthia is a member of Studio Art Quilt Associates, Fiber Works and American Quilter’s Society. She is a non-certified Quilt Judge and co-curator for the SAQA Architexture exhibition. Cynthia likes to use vibrant colors and intense quilting which can be seen in many of her art quilts.

Artist Statement:

Embroidery and cross-stitch was the beginning of my work with fiber. The “famous” Home Economics class in junior high school was the beginning of my sewing. I did make my share of traditional quilts throughout the years. During the last decade or so, I have focused my work on Art Quilts. I am not focused in one area of study. Instead, I make quilts based on an aspect that catches my eye with a strong design. I do enjoy surface design. I enjoy trying many different applications on fabric. I find Art Quilting feeds my creative soul.

Mini Portfolio


SAQA 2014 Auction Beginning Soon

The signature SAQA fundraising event of the year begins September 15th! 

Dates:Group 1, Sept 15 (2 pm ET)

Group 2, Sept 22,

Group 3, Sept 29 

Each piece starts at $750, and goes down each day ($500, $350, $250, $150, $75).

Two of our group’s pieces were selected to go to Houston to the International Quilt Festival to be shown and auctioned there (Jane Haworth, Dorothy Heidemann-Nelson

View all auction pieces

New Regional Co-Rep: Shea Wilkinson

sheaShea Wilkinson, a Nebraska native, has sewn clothes, costumes, quilts, and dolls since childhood. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in International Studies and German Language. Afterward, she taught English in Mexico, during which time she became  passionate about creating art. She returned to the United States and immediately pursued a new career as an artist.

She has exhibited widely, and has won numerous awards for her intricate, thread-based work. She lives in Omaha, Nebraska with her husband and two cats.

Member Spotlight: Jo Drueke

Jo Drueke, Exhibition Committee
Jo Drueke, Exhibition Committee

Meet Jo

Jo Drueke’s work reflects her interest in the environment which began as a child growing up on a Nebraska farm. Working in an intuitive manner, she allows the work and process to determine how the quilt develops. Inspired by the textural beauty found in nature and the ever changing environment, she utilizes stitch and embellishments to form the dimensional and tactile qualities of the finished piece. She is a member of Studio Art Quilt Associates, Surface Design Association,  Midwest Fiber Art Alliance, Fiber Works, Nebraska State Quilt Guild, and the Lincoln Quilt Guild.  Her works have been exhibited in many shows in Nebraska.  Jo won Best of Division in Mixed Media at the 2011 Nebraska State Fair with her work “Forest Floor” (below).

Artist Statement

I’ve loved nature as long as I can remember.  I spend hours examining the color, pattern, texture and structure of the small: seed pods, leaves, berries, and bark. Spiritual and ecological truths can be observed in nature:  all things are impermanent, life is rooted in seasons, and there is beauty in the withered, weathered and tarnished.  I am motivated to create by bringing attention to the often overlooked, unnoticed world.

Fabric and other fibers fascinate me, especially as I combine them to reflect what I observe and photograph in nature.  I often combining fabric with paper, threads, paint or other embellishments.  I use items found in nature and natural dye techniques to create my own printed fabric and fibers.

I love living in Nebraska!  What I enjoy most are the varied environments found within the borders of our state.  My art is a reflection of meditating on my love of our natural world.

Mini Portfolio

"Forest Floor"
“Forest Floor”
"Autumn Leaves"
“Autumn Leaves”
"Blue Solitude"
“Blue Solitude”
"Growing on Prairie"
“Growing on Prairie”

New Regional Co-Rep: Peg Pennell

Hi! I’m Peg Pennell, and as of August 1st, I am your new co-rep for the Nebraska region of SAQA.

I live just outside of Ashland, NE. I have been involved in quilting since I made my first quilt in 1973. I have been a member of the Omaha Quilters Guild, Cottonwood Quilters and the Nebraska State Quilt Guild. I also belong to several National quilt organizations. I belong to Midwest Fiber Art Alliance and Fiber Funatics, two regional art quilt groups.

While I still make the occasional functional quilt, the focus of my work is no longer in main stream quilting. I enjoy creating pieces designed for display rather than function, using textiles, and quilting in particular, in interesting new ways.

I am excited with this new opportunity to not only share my love of fiber art with other like minded people, but also to have the chance to bring a greater awareness of quilting as an art form to the general public.

Rebecca has been working with me to take over the reins for the Time Lines show so it can continue to have a smooth sail through it’s scheduled showings. She is so amazingly organized, that it should be easy!

Dori and I are working towards making the Nebraska region a vital art community with plenty of opportunities for participation on the member’s parts.  We are lucky to have someone as skilled on the computer as Dori to help our region with all of the tech stuff involved in any organization today!   We have lots of ideas for activities for our region but we want your ideas too!

We are working to get a survey together to send to you so we can get your input as to what activities YOU want our group to organize and participate in. It is really important for you to respond to the survey, as we will use it as the basis for the plans we formulate for the whole group. If you want your voice heard, please respond to the survey when it arrives!!

I’m looking forward to getting to know all of you and hope to meet many of you at our next meeting on October 20th in Columbus, NE. More details to come on location and time for the meeting. The Columbus opening of our Time Lines show will be that day at 2:00. Hope to see you there!

Peg Pennell

Time Lines Selections Announced

Congratulations to the artists who had artwork selected to be exhibited in Time Lines, the first Nebraska Regional SAQA Showcase!  We had such a good response to our call for entries and received some spectacular quilts to submit to the juror, Carol Ann Waugh.  Of the 51 entries, she chose 23 for this exhibit.

Time Lines will debut at Gallery 92 West in Fremont, NE and will be on display from May 29 through June 30, 2013.    Please come by the opening reception on June 7 from 6 pm to 8 pm to meet the artists and enjoy some refreshments.

Gallery 92 West
92 West Sixth Street
Fremont, NE

Contact:   Rebecca (

A Common Thead Chris Taylor
…and they migrate Peg Pennell
A Wrinkle In Time Joanne Alberda
Boy on a Beach Rebecca Segura
Buried Sunshine Rebecca Segura
Cave Pearls Dorothy HN
Chronoinvolution Shea Wilkinson
Five Long Days Jane Haworth
Leaves Fall Deb Hysack
Life Line Joanne Alberda
Life Roots Dianne Thomas
Lines of Symmetry Louisa Smith
Messages of the Past Aimee Mahan
Nebraska Winter Cornfield Dorothy HN
Picos Pintados Pat Dunbar
Profile of Dark Matter Shea Wilkinson
Sink Holes in Life Elaine Jones
Sunrise/Sunset on the Niobrara Rebecca Segura
Ten Commandments Elaine Jones
Time Clocks Joanne Alberda
Time Flow Peg Pennell
Tribute to M.S. Escher Pat Dunbar
Winter Sleeps Deb Hysack


Nebraska Region Studio Art Quilt Associates Blog


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