Born in Milwaukee, Colette always knew she wanted to be an artist, which led her to an art degree from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. During her years teaching elementary and middle school art and raising two children, she kept that dream alive with various creative pursuits including taking classes at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design where she took up soft pastel painting.
Since then, in her nearly 25-year love affair with pastels, Colette has exhibited widely, won numerous awards and recognitions including Master Pastellist of le Societe des Pastellists de France, Masters Circle Member (IAPS) International Association of Pastel Societies, Signature Member (PSA) Pastel Society of America, and Distinguished Pastelist (PSNM) Pastel Society of New Mexico. Her awards include placing multiple times in The Artistâ€™s Magazine competitions, and in The Pastel Journal â€śPastel 100â€ť. She has served as the judge for their Abstract Category, a juror for the 27th IAPS International Webshow, as a juror and as judge for the National Exhibition of the PSNM and for the National Exhibition of the Pastel Artists of Canada.
In Fall of 2014 Colette was the Guest of Honor of the Societe des Pastellists de France at their International Exhibition at Parc Caillebotte (the home of Gustave Caillebotte) in Yerres, on the outskirts of Paris. Her work traveled to the Museum Schafstall in Neunstadt am Kocker-Allemagne, Germany and Charenton-le-Pont, Paris. She exhibited again in France in 2016 at the International Salon of â€śPastel en Perigordâ€ť in St. Aulaye, and in October of 2016 will be one of the artists representing IAPS at the 2nd China Biennial International Pastel Exhibition in Suzhou, China. She is a contributor to the book â€śPainting Sunlight and Shadows with Pastelsâ€ť by Maggie Price and has had her work featured in The Pastel Journal, American Artist, and Pratique des Arts magazines. She teaches workshops for artist groups, the Peninsula Art School in Fish Creek, WI and also at the IAPS convention in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Her work is represented in public, corporate and private collections including the Wichita Center for the Arts, KS, the Center for the Visual Arts, Wausau, WI, Northwestern Mutual, Plexus International, West Bend Mutual, Acuity Insurance, and Deloitte and Touche LLP. Ms. Smith lives in Wauwatosa, WI where she enjoys gardening, community involvement, and from which she strikes out when she can to indulge her love of travel and to spend time with her family.
She is currently represented by the Woodwalk Gallery in Door County, Wisconsin. Her website is: www.coletteodyasmith.com.
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