Artisan Center Offers Workshop by Reclaimed Wood Artist Laura Petrovich-Cheney

Cheney Small Quilt

The Kentucky Artisan Center offers a workshop to the public on Wednesday, Feb. 6, with Massachusetts artist Laura Petrovich-Cheney utilizing salvaged wood to create small wooden quilts. 

Trained as a sculptor and fashion designer, Petrovich-Cheney collects debris in the aftermath of tragedy. Cheney uses salvaged wood from disasters like Hurricane Sandy in New York and New Jersey, as well as wood from the fires in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, to create luminous, quilt-like constructions.

Cheney doesn’t use just any reclaimed wood – her material of choice is the colorful exterior wood from disaster-struck buildings. In the aftermath of a hurricane or flood, when the harsh reality of destruction is so overwhelming, she visits damaged places and extracts boards, cladding and other elements, to aid in the cleanup efforts and find and recycle the material into her art.

Cheney designs her quilts by cutting the wood pieces into shapes, and then gluing them down using weights and wood glue onto a flat substrate or backing. Participants will use this process during the workshop on Wednesday, Feb. 6, from 10:00 am to 12:00 at the Kentucky Artisan Center.

The workshop is open to any age, with a maximum of 15 participants. Each participant receives a 5” x 5” panel and a bag of salvaged wood blocks. They will be able to create their own quilt block after an introduction to primary art/design principles that will guide them through the project. Written instructions are included. The artist will charge a $5.00 material fee.

In 2017, Cheney was awarded New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowship in Sculpture. Her works have been collected in both private and public collections, such as The Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton, MA; James A. Michener Museum, Jenkintown, PA, and the MD Anderson Cooper Hospital Cancer Center, Camden, NJ.

For more information and to sign up for the workshop call 859-985-5448 or E-mail 

The Kentucky Artisan Center is located just off I-75 at Berea Exit 77. The Center is open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and offers traveler services, shopping, exhibits and Saturday artist demonstrations. The Artisan Café & Grill is open for breakfast and lunch from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Kentucky Artisan Center is an agency in the Tourism, Arts & Heritage Cabinet of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. For more information, visit