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Nathine Smith

1929 - 2019
Nathine Smith Obituary
(News story) Nathine Smith, a pianist, a volunteer in support of arts and culture, and an artist whose colorful and textured collages captured awards, died Sunday in Ohio Living Swan Creek. She was 90.

She had dementia, her son David said.

Mrs. Smith in 1983 received her second bachelor's degree, this time in art, from the University of Toledo. She began several years earlier with a drawing class. Her children were out of the home and pursuing their own studies.

Her artwork was abstract and used mixed media, including household materials. One of her works, Primary Colors, used dryer lint, toothpicks, and strips of wrapping paper.

"I'm a saver. I grew up in the Depression, and I was taught you save things," Mrs. Smith once told the UT News. Inspired by nature, music, and literature, she also used paints, inks, crayons, and pastels in combination with other materials.

"Mainly I work with my hands. I like the feel of the textural surface, the piecing together - almost quilt-like - of paper creations," Mrs. Smith said. "I couldn't possibly duplicate a piece - the colors are always different."

Her works were in juried shows, and she received awards from Athena Art Society, Toledo Artists' Club, and Spectrum Friends of Fine Art. She was a signature member of the National Collage Society.

"She was an outstanding artist," said Kay Weprin, immediate past president of Athena, of which Mrs. Smith was an active member.

Virginia Kretz, an Athena member, took her first art class at the West Toledo YMCA, where she met Mrs. Smith. They continued their art studies at UT.

"She was very diligent, and she really worked at it, and she really studied," said Ms. Kretz.

Mrs. Smith had one a one-woman exhibit, Exploring Texture, at UT's Catharine S. Eberly Center for Women. For her final exhibit in 2017, she donated proceeds from sales of her artwork to a fund established in her name to help art students at UT.

"She enjoyed the process of creation and the freedom that the artistic creative process is," her son David said.

Her husband, Willard, was UT's vice president for business affairs. The couple supported the Toledo Museum of Art, and she was a longtime volunteer for the Toledo Symphony, especially its educational programs. A pianist and organist, she played for the Palestine Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star, of which she was a longtime member. She also accompanied her son Steven, now a conductor and composer, in his violin performances.

Elizabeth Nathine Goodenough was born Jan. 5, 1929, in Chicago, to Ethel May and Nelson Goodenough. An education major, she received a bachelor's degree in 1950 from Miami University.

She and her husband, Willard W. Smith, met while on the staff of the newspaper, the Miami Student, and married June 24, 1950. He died Dec. 2, 2018.

Surviving are her sons, David and Steven.

Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. Wednesday at Walker Funeral Home, Sylvania Township. A funeral service will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday at Epworth United Methodist Church, Ottawa Hills.

The family suggests tributes to the Nathine G. Smith Fund for Artistic Achievement through the UT Foundation; the Toledo Symphony; Toledo Museum of Art; Epworth United Methodist Church, or the .

This is a news story by Mark Zaborney. Contact him at [email protected] or 419-724-6182.
Published in The Blade on Aug. 14, 2019
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