This event has been cancelled. Please check back for future events!

with Susi Wyss

Led by a therapeutic writing facilitator, this session is designed for people living with or affected by illness. Tap into the healing benefits of writing using prompts and other exercises in a playful and supportive environment. No writing experience necessary, just an open mind.

All materials will be provided, but you are welcome to bring any journals or notebooks that you would like to use.


About Susi Wyss

Susi Wyss was born in Washington, D.C. to Swiss parents. When she turned seven, her family relocated to Abidjan, Ivory Coast for three years—a period that would have a lasting impact on her view of the world.

After graduating from Vassar College, Susi pursued a career in international health, hoping she could make a positive difference in places like the ones she’d seen as a child. She earned a master’s degree in public health from Boston University and joined the Peace Corps, working on a child survival project in the Central African Republic. For the next 16 years, she visited and worked in more than a dozen African countries, eventually living for another three years in Abidjan. It was during this second stint in the Ivory Coast that she began writing fiction, much of it inspired by people she’d met, stories she’d heard, and experiences she’d had in Africa.

Upon her return to the U.S., while continuing her work in international health, Susi earned a master’s degree in fiction writing from Johns Hopkins University. She subsequently took a two-year sabbatical to write The Civilized World, a novel-in-stories set in Africa that was published by Henry Holt in April 2011.

Since completing her debut book, Susi has been working on a second novel while also working as an editor at Jhpiego, a Baltimore-based international health organization. Her stories, including several from The Civilized World, have appeared in numerous literary magazines, including Bellevue Literary ReviewBellingham Review, and The Massachusetts Review. She has served as an associate editor for the Potomac Review, and her writing has been recognized by awards from the Maryland State Arts Council, the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, and the Money for Women/Barbara Deming Memorial Fund.

With Kiersten Gallagher and Heather Levy

Join Kiersten and Heather on November 6th & 20th for a two-part batik art series in Outside the Lines. In the simple batik process that we will be teaching, you can enjoy the beauty of fabric batik without the danger of hot wax or dyes. Attendees will all go home with a set of four cotton dinner napkins. This project requires that you attend both classes.  Please RSVP so we are sure to have enough napkins for everyone.
If you would like to work on your own projects during the two-part batik sessions, you may use the space and bring your own work!

Creative expression has often been used in the healing process and it is at the core of Smith Center’s philosophy, but fear of judgment and “not being an artist” can often prevent us from tapping into its healing power. Join us for Outside the Lines, where a facilitator will help you reclaim art-making as a healing tool through guided creative projects. Participants who feel comfortable working on their own projects are also welcome to do so. Our extensive collection of supplies is available for all to use.

This series is held twice each month on Wednesdays from 10:30am – 12:30pm. 

Upcoming sessions: 

  • November 6 & 20
  • December 4 & 18

Our programs are open to the community, and tailored to meet the needs of people affected by cancer. Classes and workshops are free or low cost on a pay-as-you-can basis, ensuring that our programs are accessible to everyone.

Suggested donation: $10 per class


About Kiersten Gallagher

As the Cancer Support Program Director, Kiersten fully believes that through the arts we can expand our perspectives and explore new fulfilling ways of being. She invites you to make our space your own refuge, to circumvent your daily routine to spark creativity, to take time for introspection, and draw outside the lines.

Cancelled!

During this session, you will learn basic swing dance during a one hour lesson, followed by one hour of dance and fun! Friends and partners welcome.


About Catherine Butterworth

Catherine Butterworth, a DC renowned instructor is a professional dance instructor who has been teaching for over 10 years. She is also a member of the National Dance Council of America and a competitor in the latin dances.

Participants are encouraged to attend all 4 classes, beginning on Wednesday, October 2nd.

Please click here to register for this series.

with Stacie Marinelli

October 30, 6:30-8:00pm – Poetry Performance!

Please join us in hearing and supporting the poetry developed throughout this month-long workshop by our fantastic participants. All are welcome. Free to attend.


Having cancer brings up so many new emotions and its trials test our stamina and strength. Writing about what we go through can release some of the trauma and allow us to view our path with new eyes. This is a four-session writing workshop for writers at all levels that will culminate in a reading of our work. Together we will share what we have to say about living with cancer from diagnosis to survivorship and generate new work through spontaneous writing using various prompts. Bring a notebook or laptop to the sessions.

Suggested Donation: $30 (includes all 4 classes)

Our programs are open to the community, and tailored to meet the needs of people affected by cancer. Classes and workshops are free or low cost on a pay-as-you-can basis, ensuring that our programs are accessible to everyone.


About Stacie Marinelli

Stacie Marinelli is a local writer, researcher and storyteller who became involved with the Smith Center after her diagnosis of tongue & neck cancer in 2012. Words about the experience tumbled out in journal entries and poems which allowed her to better accept her cancer. She has blogged about her sense of community during cancer treatment and on being a peer mentor for the cancer-support group Imerman Angels. In Boston and DC, she led workshops on writing practice based on the books of Natalie Goldberg, on writing about one’s life as a heroic journey, and on creative memoir. She served as the managing editor of a New England storytelling newsletter for many years and her writing and editing work includes poems and articles published in anthologies and magazines.

This event has been postponed until the Spring 2020 season. Please check back for new dates in the spring!

Participants are expected to attend both classes, beginning on Saturday, October 26th. Please click here to register for this series.

with Kay Chernush

A 2-day photography immersion designed to help participants see with new eyes and in new ways, and to improve their picture-taking skills.
The course is designed for people living with cancer and facing the chaos, uncertainty and fear that that disease or any life-threatening disease brings. Armed with cameras, participants will begin a process of learning “how to see,” gaining new understandings of themselves and the possibilities around them. The workshop will help you discover your “inner eye,” tap into your own creativity and to look at things from different perspectives. Subjects for discussion, reflection and shooting might include:
• Point of View
• Facing Another
• Stop Action, Pan and Blur
• Shallow and Deep
• Shadows and Reflections
• Beauty and the Unbeautiful

Participants are asked to bring their own lunches. Digital point-and-shoot camera will be provided if you do not have one.


About Kay Chernush

Kay Chernush is an award-winning photographer with more than 30 years experience in commercial and fine art photography.  Based in the Washington, DC area, her assignments have taken her all over the world   for major magazines, Fortune 500 corporations, and both nonprofit and governmental agencies. Her fine art work includes an exploration of prejudice and empathy, “The Us & The They,” and a series of self-portraits entitled “Self-Examination,” a meditation in words and images of her experience with breast cancer.

Kay earned a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and was the recipient of a Fulbright grant to India. Prior to becoming a professional photographer, she worked for the New Yorker Magazine, the New York Times Paris bureau, the Peace Corps and the US Agency for International Development.  It was while on an assignment for the Peace Corps in West Africa that she fell in love with photography.  Self-taught, she considers her career an on-going process of learning how to see.

In 2005 an assignment for the U.S. State Department brought her face to face with the evils of human trafficking and modern slavery. Challenged and appalled by this gross human rights atrocity, Kay began working with individual survivors and anti-trafficking organizations in cities around the world. The innovative approach she developed uses collaged and constructed imagery to dignify trafficked persons and re-frame how their stories are portrayed.

Kay founded ArtWorks for Freedom in July 2011. A unique non-profit organization that uses the power of art in the fight against human trafficking, ArtWorks for Freedom builds awareness, amplifies the voices of survivors, and inspires anti-trafficking activism against this worldwide crime against humanity.

Her fine art work is included in the permanent collections of the World Bank, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, and the National Institutes of Health, private collections both in this country and abroad, and has been exhibited widely in solo and juried group shows.

Kay’s images can be viewed at www.kaychernush.com and www.artworksforfreedom.org

This event has been postponed until the Spring 2020 season. Please check back for new dates in the spring!

Participants are expected to attend both classes, beginning on Saturday, October 26th. Please click here to register for this series.

with Kay Chernush

A 2-day photography immersion designed to help participants see with new eyes and in new ways, and to improve their picture-taking skills.
The course is designed for people living with cancer and facing the chaos, uncertainty and fear that that disease or any life-threatening disease brings. Armed with cameras, participants will begin a process of learning “how to see,” gaining new understandings of themselves and the possibilities around them. The workshop will help you discover your “inner eye,” tap into your own creativity and to look at things from different perspectives. Subjects for discussion, reflection and shooting might include:
• Point of View
• Facing Another
• Stop Action, Pan and Blur
• Shallow and Deep
• Shadows and Reflections
• Beauty and the Unbeautiful

Participants are asked to bring their own lunches. Digital point-and-shoot camera will be provided if you do not have one.


About Kay Chernush

Kay Chernush is an award-winning photographer with more than 30 years experience in commercial and fine art photography.  Based in the Washington, DC area, her assignments have taken her all over the world   for major magazines, Fortune 500 corporations, and both nonprofit and governmental agencies. Her fine art work includes an exploration of prejudice and empathy, “The Us & The They,” and a series of self-portraits entitled “Self-Examination,” a meditation in words and images of her experience with breast cancer.

Kay earned a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and was the recipient of a Fulbright grant to India. Prior to becoming a professional photographer, she worked for the New Yorker Magazine, the New York Times Paris bureau, the Peace Corps and the US Agency for International Development.  It was while on an assignment for the Peace Corps in West Africa that she fell in love with photography.  Self-taught, she considers her career an on-going process of learning how to see.

In 2005 an assignment for the U.S. State Department brought her face to face with the evils of human trafficking and modern slavery. Challenged and appalled by this gross human rights atrocity, Kay began working with individual survivors and anti-trafficking organizations in cities around the world. The innovative approach she developed uses collaged and constructed imagery to dignify trafficked persons and re-frame how their stories are portrayed.

Kay founded ArtWorks for Freedom in July 2011. A unique non-profit organization that uses the power of art in the fight against human trafficking, ArtWorks for Freedom builds awareness, amplifies the voices of survivors, and inspires anti-trafficking activism against this worldwide crime against humanity.

Her fine art work is included in the permanent collections of the World Bank, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, and the National Institutes of Health, private collections both in this country and abroad, and has been exhibited widely in solo and juried group shows.

Kay’s images can be viewed at www.kaychernush.com and www.artworksforfreedom.org

 

with Kiersten Gallagher and Denise Feldman

with special guest facilitator, Denise Feldman!

Creative expression has often been used in the healing process and it is at the core of Smith Center’s philosophy, but fear of judgment and “not being an artist” can often prevent us from tapping into its healing power. Join us for Outside the Lines, where a facilitator will help you reclaim art-making as a healing tool through guided creative projects. Participants who feel comfortable working on their own projects are also welcome to do so. Our extensive collection of supplies is available for all to use.

Mixed media artist and cancer survivor Denise Feldman will share her love and process for altering old hard back books as a healing art form. Get ready to cut, paste, rip, paint, glue and stamp a book cover to turn it into a visual collage of personal hope and healing.

This series is held twice each month on Wednesdays from 10:30am – 12:30pm. 

Upcoming sessions: 

  • October 23
  • November 6 & 20
  • December 4 & 18

Our programs are open to the community, and tailored to meet the needs of people affected by cancer. Classes and workshops are free or low cost on a pay-as-you-can basis, ensuring that our programs are accessible to everyone.

Suggested donation: $10 per class


About Kiersten Gallagher

As the Cancer Support Program Director, Kiersten fully believes that through the arts we can expand our perspectives and explore new fulfilling ways of being. She invites you to make our space your own refuge, to circumvent your daily routine to spark creativity, to take time for introspection, and draw outside the lines.

About Denise Feldman

Denise Feldman is a local mixed media artist who discovered the power of creativity as a healing practice after her treatment for breast cancer in 2014. As a creative ‘dabbler’ who loves working with various materials and surfaces, Denise shares her altered book processes and soulful perspective with the hope of inspiring others to tell their stories ‘on the page’ and clear space for life’s chapters yet to come.

Click here to visit the Joan Hisaoka Gallery website.

Mind | BODY | Soul

Healing the Outside from Within

A Group Exhibition

Curated by Lindsey Yancich and Meg Mowery


October 1 – December 21, 2019

Curator & Artist Talk: Saturday, October 19, 1:00-3:00pm

Join the artists and curators of Mind, BODY, Soul for a look into their creative and individual perspectives!


In today’s fast-paced world of technology, social media, and a volatile political climate, American society’s opinions regarding body image are constantly evolving and oftentimes treacherous to navigate. Through platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat, a younger generation (that’s YOU!) is now dictating and interrogating their own ideals of beauty and body positivity. In this group exhibition, this new generation of artists and thinkers explore concepts of the body as a catalyst for healing and acceptance.

Participants are encouraged to attend all 4 classes, beginning on Wednesday, October 2nd.

Please click here to register for this series.

with Stacie Marinelli

Having cancer brings up so many new emotions and its trials test our stamina and strength. Writing about what we go through can release some of the trauma and allow us to view our path with new eyes. This is a four-session writing workshop for writers at all levels that will culminate in a reading of our work. Together we will share what we have to say about living with cancer from diagnosis to survivorship and generate new work through spontaneous writing using various prompts. Bring a notebook or laptop to the sessions.

Suggested Donation: $30 (includes all 4 classes)

Our programs are open to the community, and tailored to meet the needs of people affected by cancer. Classes and workshops are free or low cost on a pay-as-you-can basis, ensuring that our programs are accessible to everyone.


About Stacie Marinelli

Stacie Marinelli is a local writer, researcher and storyteller who became involved with the Smith Center after her diagnosis of tongue & neck cancer in 2012. Words about the experience tumbled out in journal entries and poems which allowed her to better accept her cancer. She has blogged about her sense of community during cancer treatment and on being a peer mentor for the cancer-support group Imerman Angels. In Boston and DC, she led workshops on writing practice based on the books of Natalie Goldberg, on writing about one’s life as a heroic journey, and on creative memoir. She served as the managing editor of a New England storytelling newsletter for many years and her writing and editing work includes poems and articles published in anthologies and magazines.

This event is now full. Please contact Carla at carla@smithcenter.org to be added to the waitlist.

 

IV: A Documentary Theatre Intervention draws attention to the immeasurable challenges of the lives lived with metastatic breast cancer and the disparities in healthcare accessibility, research funding, and treatment capabilities. Through passages from interviews with 116 people living, and who have died from, this disease, IV narrates the compelling, heart-wrenching, and candid lives lived with metastatic breast cancer and sheds an unprecedented light on a complex, nuanced epidemic.