technicolor tree rings, air dance, with two sticks you get fire

debo hysack
12″w x 24″l

debo hysack
12″w x 24″l

debo hysack
12″w x 24″l

Purchase the trio for $400.

Debo Hysack studied music, printmaking, graphic design and political science before graduating from the University of Minnesota. As a textile and surface design artist, she has explored painting, printing, marbling and fabric manipulation for quilts and small structures. Large works depicting insect images and musical themes are in private collections in Omaha and Minnesota. As a SAQA member, Hysack has exhibited in online galleries, juried shows and regional exhibitions. She has had numerous items published in Quilting Arts and Cloth Paper Scissors magazines and has taught textile surface design and marbling online for private students and at Joslyn Museum.

Below are her thoughts on the creation of her trio of works.

Technicolor Tree Rings
Some trees take on the patina of age and art in their slices.
Commercial fabric pieced, appliqued and quilted with variegated thread.

Air Dance
Today’s windmills perform an air ballet as you drive through the countryside.
Hand-dyed, hand-painted fabric and cheesecloth; commercial fabric and straws; hand- and machine-stitched with variegated thread.

With Two Sticks You Get Fire
Fatwood sticks make a good fire with kindling and paper.
Commercial over-dyed fabric, painted rice cloth appliqued and quilted with variegated thread.

it’s not a phase, mom opens may 4

Stressed Out
Zoe Gaupp
Mixed media

The little gallery will host its first ever teen art show in conjunction with the May 2018 edition of Benson First Friday.

An opening reception for “It’s Not a Phase, Mom” is set for Friday, May 4, from 6:00 to 9:00pm. The exhibition, which features works by local teens across the metro, is curated by Allison Harris, the little gallery’s intern and a senior at Central High School. “My goal was to showcase the young talent I’ve seen in Omaha from my peers,” Harris said. “The little gallery gave me the ability to show my work while I was in high school, and I wanted to give other young artists the same opportunity.”

The show runs through May 26 at the little gallery, 5901 Maple Street in downtown Benson. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday from 3:00 to 6:00pm, Saturday from 10:00am to 1:00pm and by appointment. For more information, call 402.681.1901.

Facebook event

high tide

Cindy Erickson
42″w x 40″l

Cindy Erickson started her career as an interior designer in Arizona and Utah, then specialized in creating applique wall hangings and clothing for boutiques. Since being introduced to the rotary cutter and half-square triangle, she’s been unstoppable. Erickson makes commission quilts and samples for various international companies and individuals. She is an NQA-certified quilt judge and teaches quilting and clothing specialty classes at Bernina Sewing Center in Omaha as well as lecturing and teaching classes around the country. She has been published in Quiltmaker, Fons and Porters magazine and leisure arts publications. Her quilts have been shown at AQS, Houston, PIQS and NQA. Below are her thoughts on the creation of “High Tide.”

“This is an interpretation of the element water. I thought of the colors of water, and the movement and flow of our most precious element. This piece uses had dyed and commercial fabrics.”

earth, air, water, fire

LaVonne Dunetts
18.5″w x 26″l

LaVonne Dunetts
19″w x 25″l

LaVonne Dunetts
19.5″w x 24″l

LaVonne Dunetts
17″w x 24″l








LaVonne Dunetts has been creating with fiber in many forms for much of her life. Most of her quilting works are original designs using fabrics she has hand-dyed, overdyed or painted. Dunetts has won numerous awards for her art, quilting and sewing – both locally and statewide. Her background in engineering and construction help her visualize how materials can be arranged in complex variations. Her goal is to create harmony and beauty from disorder and chaos. Below are her thoughts on the creation of “Earth, Air, Fire, Water.”

“Earth, air, fire and water: identified by the ancient Greeks as the elements that make up the world. We now know them as solids, liquids, gases and energy: separate but interconnected to form our universe. I have depicted each separate element with my work but have used the copper discs to show interconnectivity. Cupric ores are dug from the earth, smelted and annealed with fire, quenched in water and oxidized in air. I have used my hand-dyed and commercial fabrics, beads and yarn.”


earth’s strata

Jo Drueke
25.5″w x 50.5″l

Jo Drueke has been working with fabric for almost all her life. Currently, her work reflects the love she has for the varied land and habitats found in Nebraska as well as the garden she maintains. She has shown her fiber art work in Lincoln, Omaha, Seward, Grand Island and Scottsbluff as a member of the Midwest Fiber Art Alliance, Studio Art Quilters Associates and FiberWorks. Below are her thoughts on the creation of Earth’s Strata.

“An eco-dyeing process utilized Earth’s plants and minerals to create unique textiles. Fabric is joined together to represent the soil and depth of the earth’s layers. Strata, the earth rock layers, are indicated by the quilting lines.”

avalanche creek, glacier national park

gail dickel
23.75w x 40.5l inches

Gail Dickel’s background is in art education. Her early work with paint focused on an abstract color field style, but she has also done representational work as well as ceramics, collage, photography and fiber arts. Gail joined the Midwest Fiber Art Alliance in 2011 and has exhibited art quilts at Lauritzen Gardens, Jewish Community Center, Sunderland Gallery and Hilmer Gallery in Omaha, International Quilt Study Center in Lincoln and Bartenbach Gallery in Grand Island. Gail has also exhibited her photographs, collage and watercolor work, and fiber art pieces in the annual Nebraska Art Teachers Association Art exhibits (2005-2012). Below are her thoughts on the creation of Avalanche Creek, Glacier National Park.

“I feel a deep connection to the natural world around me. I began this piece after a trip to Glacier National Park, where I hiked the Avalanche Lake Trail. This trail went alongside Avalanche Creek. The creek roared past us, moving quickly between the large rocks. The sunlight streamed through the tall pines, allowing the water to glisten in its brilliant blue hues.”


my midnight garden

shelly burge
51″w by 36″l

Shelly Burge learned to sew on a hand crank toy sewing machine when she was four. She’s been making quilts for more than 40 years and is known nationally and internationally for her work and the quilting classes she teaches. Her work has received prestigious honors in art and quilt competitions across the country and has been exhibited in Japan, Russia, Germany, France and the Netherlands. She is the author of two books on quilting, and her articles and quilts have been featured in numerous books and magazines. Burge was inducted into the Nebraska Quilters Hall of Fame in 2009. Her work is included in public and private collections, including the International Quilt Study Center & Museum and the Nebraska Governor’s Mansion. For more information on the artist, visit

Below are her thoughts on the creation of My Midnight Garden.

“Ancient civilizations believed the world to be made up of four basic elements; they considered these energy forces critical for sustaining human life. But isn’t it logical that those four elements are also necessary for plant and animal life? Plants need soil (earth), air (wind), sunlight (fire) and water to thrive. My Midnight Garden is machine pieced and machine quilted.”



earthly waves

marge bresel


Marge Bresel has been sewing since age 13. She moved from garments to traditional quilting to art quilting and now uses various surface design and mixed-media techniques. Fiber art is one of her “windows on the world.” Shape and color are her expressions of mood and emotions, along with a sizeable stash of fabric. Below are her thoughts on the creation of Earthly Waves.

Earthly Waves weaves its magic throughout all matter. It is the food that provides nutrients to the other elements. A basis for life, it comes in many forms and colors.”

Materials used: cotton, silk, acrylic paint, metallic thread
Techniques: fusing, decorative stitches, stamping

Part of the Elements exhibition by the Midwest Fiber Art Alliance on display at the little gallery through April 28.

simulated kimono

Rhonda Baldwin

Rhonda Baldwin is a textile artist from Grand Island, NE. Vibrant color and surface design techniques are the focus of her work. She continues to gain knowledge in various media and applies these new learnings to her current work. Below are her thoughts on the making of “Simulated Kimono.”

Change is the essence of life on this planet. Time manipulates the elements every second of every day. Elements are the substances – usually earth, water, air, and fire – formerly regarded as constituting the material universe. In this piece, decay and rebirth are represented. Mountains decay into dust carried by the wind and water only to be redeposited again to form the mountains. The cycle of change continues. This piece was made with free form hand embroidery and machine stitch on linen with cotton accents.

Part of the 2018 Elements exhibition of the Midwest Fiber Art Alliance at the little gallery, April 2018.

elements opens april 6

“Earth Elements” by Aimee Mahan, $750.

Elements opens Friday, April 6, at the little gallery, 5901 Maple Street in downtown Benson. The exhibition features the work of 15 members of the Midwest Fiber Art Alliance (MFAA). The opening reception runs from 6:00 to 9:00pm, and all are welcome to attend.

Each piece in the show represents the artist’s interpretation of the theme “ancient elements.” The featured artists are:

  • Rhonda Baldwin
  • Marge Bresel
  • Shelly Burge
  • Gail Dickel
  • Jo Drueke
  • LaVonne Dunetts
  • Cindy Erickson
  • Debo Hysack
  • Cynthia Levis
  • Aimee Mahan
  • Wendy Maliszewski
  • Marcia O’Donovan
  • Peg Pennell
  • Cindy Schroeder
  • Dianne Thomas

The MFAA consists of about 20 local artists who have joined together to produce fiber-centered art to be displayed in a gallery setting. The group selects a yearly theme and parameters that guide the creative process.

Elements runs through April 28 at the little gallery. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday from 3:00 to 6:00pm, Saturday from 10:00am to 1:00pm and by appointment. For more information, call 402.681.1901.