River Valley Coop, Part 2

After taking a few years off from commissioned work and teaching, I just finished installing a new mural I am very excited about, in the entrance to the new River Valley Coop in Easthampton MA. The coop opened last June

The design features Ursula, the coop’s beloved black bear, paddling a canoe to the shore of Nashawannuck pond, along with a bear cub who is reaching for fish in the water. They are being welcomed to Easthampton by a crew of animals, including a rabbit, fox, deer, dragonfly and turtle. The “everyone is welcome” banner is being pulled by a red tailed hawk, which is a favorite of Easthampton’s mayor, Nicole LaChapelle. Mt Tom fills the background.

I enjoyed designing this, as it was a continuation from the first mural I designed for River Valley Coop’s Northampton store back in 2015. This design shows the growing coop family and celebrates Easthampton, which is where I lived for 10 years.

The mural is 8′ long and 32″ tall. I’ll post a better photo once I have a chance to go there with proper lighting.

2017: The Year in Mosaics

Happy New Year!

This post is dedicated to everyone who took a class in my studio this year and helped to make it a year filled with mosaic inspiration for me. Please enjoy this album I created, with just some of the many many wonderful pieces of art created in 2017.

Thank you for your continued support of my work!

Happy 2018!






Special Workshop with Martin Cheek, Visiting Artist from the UK

Visiting Artist Martin Cheek:

2 Day Portraiture Workshop: Plants, Animals and More

April 7 & 8, 2018 (Saturday & Sunday) 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

This class is now full. Please contact me to be added to the  wait list.

Visiting Artist Martin Cheek:

2 Day Portraiture Workshop: Plants, Animals and More

April 7-8, 2018 (Saturday & Sunday) 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Martin Cheek, a British mosaic artist who has been making mosaics for 30 years, and has written 7  best selling books about mosaics (which you’ve seen in my studio!) will be on a 3 month teaching tour in the US and I’m thrilled to be hosting him to teach in my studio on April 7-8, 2018.

For the past twenty seven years, Martin has run mosaic courses all over the world with the intention, as he says, “to enable others to share in this wonderful medium”. Over two thousand students have participated, many of whom have continued to make mosaics either as a hobby or as a profession.

Martin is known for his sense of humor and his “cheeky birds” that are so well-loved. He is also known for pioneering the use of handmade glass fusions in his work. He will be providing custom made glass fusions for all students, and is ready to start working with you now via email, to create the fusions you need for your mosaic idea. This is a unique and rare opportunity! To read more about Martin and view his amazing mosaic work, visit his website.

For this class, participants will think about what it is they would like to make a mosaic of, and bring with them to the workshop this inspirational reference image. During the workshop we will be working with various materials including stained glass, vitreous glass, ceramic tile and pottery shards, along with Martin’s own hand made fusions to create pieces full of texture, dimension, originality and color. Using examples of Martin’s own work, he will show you how the various materials affect your finished piece. Martin will have on hand, many fused glass pieces to choose from that you can experiment with in your own creations during this workshop, and he can custom make fusions for you ahead of time, based on your specific subject idea for your mosaic. (orders for custom fusions must be placed by January 20, 2018)

No matter what your experience is with mosaic art, Martin addresses each student at his or her level of experience from beginner to beyond.

The course will be lots of hands on work creating mosaic pieces, practical demonstrations, slide-show presentations, and individual instruction, all of which are aimed to ensure that each student learns the art of creating mosaics and learns more about their own creative, personal style.

Glass cutting, shaping techniques and design elements and techniques will be covered. Choose between 2 size substrates: 12 x 12 inches or 16 x 12 inches to work on over the course of the workshop.

Course Fee: $350

Materials Fee: $60

Register now, space is limited!

A deposit of $100 will hold your spot, with the balance due by March 1, 2018.

Pay $100 Deposit

Pay in Full












A Collaboration 30 Years in the Making

About a year ago, I was visiting some friends, Laurie and Dan, and we were talking about mosaics.

Dan showed me a couple of mosaics made by his father, Seymour Zukergood, who was a Junior High Ceramics Teacher in Flushing, Queens back in the 70’s. Here is one of those pieces, about 8″ x 10″, made with beautiful, carefully cut ceramic tiles, all fitting together tightly, with precision.



I admired it, and then was even more interested in the next mosaic Dan brought out from a closet. Seymour had begun a replica of a famous painting. He had been working on this shortly before he died in 1976 and it was unfinished. I recognized it as being based on a painting from the Mexican Revolution, but didn’t know who the artist was. We discussed the possibility of me finishing the mosaic.

I took it home that night to see if I could figure out what painting it was based on. I posted the above photo on Facebook and tagged some artist and art historian friends of mine to see what came up. Within a few hours, my friend and former drawing teacher Christy had identified it as a painting from 1931 by Jose Clemente Orozco called Zapatistas Marching:

Orozco was known as one of ‘los tres grandes’ (the big three) Mexican muralists, along with Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros. Each of their styles differed a lot but contained similar content: they depicted Emiliano Zapata, the main leader of the peasant revolution, who had been killed in battle in 1919. This particular painting depicts Zapata’s followers, known as Zapatistas, marching to their death. There is a somber darkness and heaviness to the piece, with a lot of black and red.

So, I began the search for tiles that were similar in thickness, color and texture to the ones Seymour had used to begin the piece. Laurie even searched the attic of Dan’s mother’s house to see if he had stored away the rest of those tiles, but did not find any. I visited with the good people at Arrow Tile, the local specialty tile store, to see if they could help. We did not find anything suitable in ceramic tile, mostly because the tiles he used were extremely thin.

I decided to use glass to finish the job because the thickness matched perfectly and the colors were pretty close. The daunting part for me was getting the pieces to fit together with as much precision as Seymour had. His cuts were beautifully shaped and the rendering of the figures in the bottom was beautiful. He had left me with a couple of large faces to complete, which are the hardest subject matter for me in a mosaic.

I worked to the best of my ability and finished this piece in time for Laurie to surprise Dan with it for Christmas this year. While working on it, I imagined Seymour and his incredible technical skill, patiently piecing together the crowd of peasants marching, wondering what his particular interest was in that subject. I thought of my own grandfather, Edward Sussmann, who, during that same time in the 1970’s, was teaching art at a high school in Forest Hills, less than 5 miles away. Something about the smell of the wood reminded me of my grandfather’s paintings, which are all I have to know him by, because he died when I was only 3 years old. He had spent years in his earlier life hitchhiking and painting his way across the country, his paintings in a large trunk. I’m now imagining that he and Seymour knew each other, though I will never know.

My work as an artist has always made me feel connected to my grandfather and I felt so happy that, in some way, he showed up for me in this project. I am happy to share the outcome of this collaboration, 30 years in the making, and I am grateful to Dan and Laurie for the chance to bring this work up out of the closet to where it now hangs on the wall in the main entryway of their home.

Rescheduled! Architectural Mosaics Workshop with Cathleen Newsham

I am excited to announce that Cathleen Newsham, founding member of the New England Mosaic Society, will be teaching this workshop in my studio in March! Space is limited, sign up early!

Creating Architectural Mosaics with Cathleen Newsham

*New Date: Saturday March 18, 10am-5pm & Sunday March 19, 10am-3pm, 2017

If you love mosaics and are ready to tackle installations but don’t know where to start, this is the workshop for you! Taking on an architectural mosaic project can be a scary prospect! In this two day workshop, Cathleen Newsham, founder of Modern Mosaic Arts, will try to calm your nerves by showing you her tried and true techniques and sharing her experiences from 17 years of architectural mosaic creation. Detailing the initial process of pricing, presenting and designing, as well as sourcing, fabrication and installing, she will reveal her secrets to a successful mosaic installation. You will get an inside look at how a mural is made and how to turn your love of mosaic into a business that can be profitable and fun!

This is a professional development workshop, so you will not be completing a mosaic. You will take home two small ungrouted test mosaics that will allow you to try the techniques we will be discussing, enabling you to feel confident in your abilities before starting a project of your own. The goal of this class is to listen and learn, not to create an art piece.

Sign up now! Space is limited! Discount for NEMS members!

$400 plus $10 materials fee

$25 discount for New England Mosaic Society Members

Register Now!

Regular Price 

NEMS Member Price 

Here are some of Cathleen’s installations:






You can see more of Cathleen’s work on her Facebook Page, or on her Website.


Cathleen Newsham, Owner, Modern Mosaic Arts, LLC, Danbury, CT

For 17 years, Cathleen has been designing, fabricating and installing architectural mosaics.  With degrees in graphic design and fine art, she continues her creative studies with accomplished mosaic and fine artists, learning new techniques and materials, and meeting other creatives from around the world. Between architectural and graphic design projects, you will find Cathleen traveling throughout the U.S. teaching the art and business of mosaic.

917-796-6086     Email Cathleen

Here is what some of Cathleen’s past students have to say about this workshop:

“I have taken an Architectural Mosaic workshop with Cathleen Newsham over the past weekend, through Mosaic Oasis in Arlington MA. Cathleen provided a wealth of practical, applied knowledge from how to price out a potential job, to seeking out clientele, to mosaic installation that is durable in the New England climate. I feel very equipped to take on an architectural installation job since taking the workshop. Thank you, Cathleen!”
Cassie Doyon
“I took the class and really loved it, Cathleen is so knowledgeable about the topic and has an endless amount of experience! It was so great to be hearing about supplies, vendors and more that actually work and we can feel confident using. Thanks Cathleen, I have a meeting with the staff at the spiritual center next week about their outside mosaic and feel so much more confident about the project!”
Cheryl Cohen
“Thank you for taking the time this weekend to share all you have learned about large mosaic installations. I feel inspired and it was all very helpful to me. And thank you for the amazing notebook chocked full of so much great info!”
Carol Krentzman
“I really enjoyed meeting you and taking your class this past weekend. I learned great tips that are relevant to my current project. Thank you for your advice on my installation!”
Michael J. Ferreira

Holiday Show Schedule

Introducing the Bits of Bling Series! Mosaic Jewelry Set in Sterling Silver Introducing the Bits of Bling Series! Mosaic Jewelry Set in Sterling Silver

I can’t believe that it’s already time for this, but it’s happening!

I hope to see many of you on the holiday shopping circuit over the next several weeks!

Here is a list of where you can find me and/or my work. (jewelry, stepping stones, greeting cards, herbal skin care products, and more)

Snow Farm Seconds Sale
November 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 22, 27, 28, 29. 10am – 4 pm each day. This is a fundraiser for Snow Farm and a wonderful way to visit the beautiful campus, shop in the ‘studios-turned-galleries’ and have lunch in the café.

Arts & Industry Open Studios in Florence
November 14 & 15, 10 am -5 pm. 221 Pine Street . (I’ll be in the hallway on the 2nd floor)

Holiday Craft Sale, home of Laurie Herrick, Glassblower
December 5, 3 pm-8 pm.
231 Madison Ave West, Holyoke. (Please RSVP if you plan to come to this event since it’s in a private home. We’ll have food and drinks for everyone too!)

Small Works Show & Sale, Easthampton City Arts+

December 10, 6:30-9:30 pm (Holiday Bash) and December 12, 5-8 pm (Art Walk) Old Town Hall, Easthampton

Sticks & Bricks Trunk Show

December 11, 5-8 pm (during Art’s Night Out)
Market St, Northampton

Thread Arts Collective Holiday Pop-Up

December 12, 12-9 pm, Cottage St, Easthampton

Cedar Chest, Thorne’s Market, Northampton
Beginning in mid-November, my stepping stones will be for sale on the 2nd floor, as part of regular store merchandise, not just for the holidays!

My greeting cards are always for sale at:

Cup & Top Café, Florence

Acadia Herbals, Northampton



My Upcoming Show at Sticks and Bricks

My Upcoming Show Description:

Smashed and Whole Again

Christine Kenneally creates mosaics that are both expressive and functional.  She works with beautiful, yet often discarded objects like stained glass, broken china, and ceramic tile. She transforms these materials by either smashing them or very carefully cutting them, and giving them new life in a completely different arrangement of pattern, line and movement. This process represents the ebb and flow of nature and our lives; birth, life, death, and rebirth.

Come explore nature, wildness, joy and the amazing flow of our lives with Christine’s mosaic tables, stepping stones, jewelry and framed wall hangings. Opening reception on August 14 during Arts Night Out, 5-8 pm. Sticks and Bricks is located at 9 Market Street in Northampton. 


Skin Therapy, The Story Behind My New Line of Herbal Body Products

Skin Therapy: My Story

Making mosaics involves a lot of repetitive motion. Nipping glass and tiles causes continuous contraction of the muscles and tendons in the hand. About a year and a half ago, I was working on a very large commission (a total of about 35 square feet of mosaic) and this repetitive motion caught up with me in a painful way. I had a tight deadline and so I was working 10 + hour days. One morning, I found that I couldn’t lift my coffee cup (a tragedy) and so I knew I needed to take action.  I had to keep working so I could finish on time!

The back story here is that for the past three years, I had been studying herbal medicine with a wonderfully wise and gifted herbalist, Brittany Nickerson www.thymeherbal.com and so I had learned how to use plants to make home remedies for many common things. I already believed in the power of plants to enhance our lives and our health. I had been reading about the importance of paying attention to what I put on my skin- as the skin is so permeable and whatever goes on the skin goes right into the bloodstream.  Avoiding products with unrecognizable and harmful ingredients was important to me. I’ll talk more about the specifics of this in another post.

I went to Cornucopia, a local health food store and asked for a skin salve that would help tendon pain. They recommended a wonderful product made by a company called Kuumba. Massaging this onto my hand, wrist and forearm (along with altering the way I used my glass nipper) reduced the pain in a miraculous way. Looking at the list of ingredients and seeing that they were all familiar to me, I began to think that I could make my own blend.

Over the past 10 months, I have been crafting a variety of herbal body products, using a few of my favorite plants and sharing them with friends to get feedback. The consensus has been “You have to start selling these products!”.  I”ve made salves for reducing repetitive motion strain and bruising, salves for cuts and cracks in the skin (grouting mosaics causes this in a big way!) salves for itchy heat rash and bug bites, lotions and body butters for moisturizing and nourishing the skin, lip balms, room sprays and massage oils. I feel really good about all of the ingredients I use. My rule is: if I wouldn’t eat the product, then I wouldn’t put it on my skin! (not that I necessarily recommend eating them, but it’s not out of the question!).

After months of trying out various formulations, recipes and having fun being creative, I am now finally launching my first two products, with a third on the way very soon and more to follow hopefully in the next few months.

My line of products is called Skin Therapy and the first two products are: Whipped Body Butter, and Hand Repair Moisturizing Salve. The label features a mosaic that I made of a calendula flower (one of the main ingredients!).

I make both of these in very small batches (6 ounces of product at a time) so that I can have a high level of control over the outcome. I infuse the calendula and comfrey into the olive oil in a way that does not involve heating the oil (which can cause the oils to break down and lose quality). I work in a professional and very clean manner, in my home kitchen. I infuse the products, and the process with love and the intentions of helping and bringing happiness to people. This part is important to me, regardless of whether you believe it makes a difference or not. I am happy to answer questions you may have about the products.

You can read all about these products on my website, including information about how to purchase them, as well as profiles of each ingredient. Click here

Please contact me with any questions.

This is my personal story and it is not meant to treat, diagnose or cure any illnesses or diseases and should not be used in the place of medical advice.


Teaching and Learning

I was at Snow Farm again this weekend, teaching a 3 day class. While no two groups are ever the same, I am struck by how distinctly different this group was from my last group 2 weeks ago. This weekend, the studio was filled with a palpable sense of curiosity, experimentation and willingness to take chances. There were five amazing women in the class, each with varying levels of experience. They supported and helped each other in a way that was inspiring and made me feel very proud. One student, who has taken several classes with me, even helped me do some of the demos. The learning, I believe, went way beyond the stunning finished works, but was evident in the way each person embraced the process- asking questions, pushing through moments of uncertainty, and even deciding to change direction completely.  I was reminded of my own beginnings with mosaics and the excitement I felt about the process of playing with the arrangement of shapes and allowing myself to react to it. I am so grateful for the experience and for the chance to work with and learn from such exceptional women. 

Here are the finished works!

And here are a few pictures of the work in progress.

The magic of teaching and learning really came alive for me this weekend. 

I will be teaching two more classes at Snow Farm this year, August 2-8 and October 24-25.

Starry Night Sky with Ocean

Mosaics at Snow Farm

Student work, made by Kate M. 

Student work, made by Kate M. 

I just got home from teaching a weeklong class at Snow Farm. What an incredible week! Even though it’s only 25 minutes from my house, I decided to live there for the week to make it as much of an immersion experience as possible. So basically, I got to spend my week in the most beautiful place in the world, with other artists and students, doing what I love most, and not having to worry about cooking or washing dishes!

The group was organized through Road Scholar, so it was ages 55+. There were 8 students in my class, with various levels of experience.. About half of them were brand new to mosaics and  the other half had some experience, including one woman who has taken my weeklong class at Snow Farm for the past 3 years in a row. Everyone was from out of state, including 2 women from the west coast and one from the south. 

They  all made beautiful work, and demonstrated one of my favorite things about mosaics: everybody has a different style and approach to this medium, and the work is always so varied and exciting! I learned new things from the work they did, particularly through problem solving some of their ideas about using unorthodox found objects, like beaded chain to make a flower, and adding raised components. One guy even found a rock outside and turned that into a base for a mosaic! 

I taught them both the direct and indirect methods. Most of them preferred working in the indirect method (building a mosaic temporarily on contact paper, flipping it over, and then attaching it all at once to the final substrate from the back side). Four students made stepping stones. My proud teacher moments came when I saw my students helping each other, and overheard them explaining the process to others, which told me that they really understood and took pride in what they were learning.  

We finished the week with a Gala and Auction, where they got to display their creations. Some people donated a piece to the auction to raise money for improvements to Snow Farm.  The class collaborated to make a stepping stone to donate to the auction. It turned out beautifully!

I left with a feeling of tired contentment. 

And I’ll be back in just a few days to teach the Memorial Weekend Intensive (Saturday thru Monday). My class still has a few spaces, so this is your chance to get in on the Smashing Good Times.