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The Craft School Experience: Outcomes and Revelations

Anyone who has spent time at Penland or a similar school will likely understand what the “Craft School Experience” is all about. But for everyone else, it can be difficult to put into words. Time living and working at a craft school is intense and uniquely focused. It’s a rare opportunity to be fully immersed in a place, a community, and a creative process, one that many find thought provoking, inspiring, and often transformational.

Penland has teamed up with four of our sister schools—Arrowmont (TN), Haystack (ME), Peters Valley (NJ), and Pilchuck (WA)—to celebrate craft and promote the immersive workshop experience our schools offer artists of all levels. This winter, we are thrilled to be working with the Craft in America Center in Los Angeles to put on the exhibition The Craft School Experience: Revelations and Outcomes. The show strives to capture the essence of the craft school experience by featuring the work of master teachers, resident artists, and students who have studied or taught at these craft schools alongside personal narratives, quotes, and videos. Penland instructors and residents including Cynthia Bringle, Nancy Callan, Susie Ganch, Marc Maiorana, and Jaydan Moore will be among those featured in the exhibition.

In conjunction with Revelations and Outcomes, Penland Director Jean McLaughlin will present a talk entitled “Make/Time: The Craft School Experience” at the Craft in America Center on Saturday, January 28 at 4 PM. She will draw on her eighteen years at Penland to share stories about the joys and impacts that schools like Penland, Arrowmont, Haystack, Peters Valley, and Pilchuck offer individuals and the broader craft community.

We hope that everyone who is able to attend the exhibition and/or Jean’s talk comes away with a deeper understanding of the power and inspiration that is the craft school experience. And when they’re ready to experience it for themselves, we’re here with workshops and open studio doors.

 

glass work and a student making a clay piece

Left to right: exhibition piece by Nancy Callan; a student working in clay at Haystack School; exhibition piece by Lino Tagliapietra.

 

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Photo of the Week: Getting Ready

preparing kiln posts

Clay studio coordinator Susan Feagin getting the kiln furniture ready for six weeks of clay studio residents starting in January. This is just one of the many, many tasks that goes on behind the scenes between the end of fall concentrations and the beginning of winter residencies at Penland.

 

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Welcome New Core Fellows!

We’re thrilled to welcome four new artists to the Core Fellowship Program for 2017-2019! This new crew will join us on campus March 1 and will take up residence in Morgan Hall with second-year core fellows Eleanor Anderson, Thomas Campbell, Rachel Kedinger, Kyle Kulchar, and Alex McClay. We’re pretty sure they have great things in store.

 

Stormie Burns

Stormie is a familiar face to anyone in the Penland area. For the past year and a half she’s been working as a barista in the Penland Coffee House while also working for local potter Courtney Martin (among others) and coordinating Roan Readers, a Rural Education Partners program. Stormie has created her own education path and has taken classes at the Morean Arts Center, Arrowmont, Odyssey Ceramic Arts, and Penland. As a core fellow, she wants to generate momentum for her work while developing skills in printmaking and ceramics and experimenting in other studios. stormieburns.com

 

Elliot Keeley

Elliot is a recent graduate from the Appalachian State University metals program. He has worked as a gallery assistant, studio tech, and bench jeweler and, most recently, completed an internship at Elsewhere, a living museum in a converted three-story thrift store in Greensboro, NC. Elliot has been a frequent work-study scholarship student at Penland in iron and metals classes and has volunteered at the Annual Benefit Auction. He is excited to take creative strides in his work through a myriad of metals classes as well as complementary media. eekeeley.com

 

Sarah Rose Lejeune

Sarah Rose will be coming to Penland from an internship at the Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, NY, where she has been working since this summer. She has also been an intern and studio assistant at Dieu Donné, a non-profit paper studio and art center in New York City. Sarah Rose is a graduate of Oberlin College, where she studied studio art and comparative American studies, and though she has never been to Penland, she has taken classes at Ox-Bow, Haystack, and the Robert Blackburn Print Shop. As a core fellow Sarah Rose wants to learn new processes and develop skills in textiles, printmaking, metals, and paper. sarahroselejeune.com

 

Corey Pemberton

Corey has been part of the Penland community for several years and has lived in the area for the past two years while working as a studio assistant for local glassblower John Geci. Corey is a graduate of the Virginia Commonwealth University Craft and Material Studies program and has been a frequent and favorite studio assistant in Penland’s glass studio, as well as glass studios all over the US including Pittsburgh Glass, Corning Museum of Glass, Haystack, and Pilchuck. Corey now wants to explore new directions in his work, pushing beyond his current skill set to try new studios, new media, and new ideas. coreyhpemberton.com

 

Of course, welcoming new core fellows also means that we’ll be saying goodbye to some of our incredible current core fellows at the end of the winter: Elmar Fujita, Daniel Garver, Morgan Hill, and Bryan Parnham. They’ll sure be missed, but we can’t wait to see where their creative energies take them next—hopefully back to Penland at some point down the road!

 

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Melissa Draws

artist melissa stern in the Penland drawing and painting studio

Instructor Melissa Stern working in the Penland drawing and painting studio during her one-week workshop titled Every Picture Tells a Story: Drawing, Collage, and Storytelling.

 

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Resident Rock Stars

Penland’s resident artists spend three years living on campus and working as self-supporting artists in their field. Their time at Penland is designed as an opportunity for them to deepen their studio practice, push technical and conceptual boundaries, or explore entirely new directions in their work.

We’re continually amazed by the pieces that come out of each of the resident studios at The Barns, and we’re proud to have such talented artists calling Penland home. Recently, three residents were recognized for their outstanding work with prestigious (and, in our opinion, well-deserved) fellowships.

 

Annie Evelyn, "The Scotty," collaboration with Scotty Albrecht

Annie Evelyn, “The Scotty,” aluminum, collaboration with Scotty Albrecht

Annie Evelyn
Furniture designer Annie Evelyn was just awarded the 2016 John D. Mineck Fellowship by the Society of Arts and Crafts. The $25,000 award is presented “to encourage and support a young-in-career furniture artist… who demonstrates skill and commitment to their craft.” Annie plans to use the award to purchase tools to outfit her shop post-Penland. She envisions the space as a well-equipped communal studio that will also serve as a venue for community workshops, exhibitions, and events. “Annie’s spirit of community, generosity, and mentorship shined in her application, and will serve her well as she leaves the Penland community and establishes her studio,” the Society of Arts and Crafts stated. Annie is known for her explorations into hard/soft surfaces and applying traditional upholstery techniques to materials like wood, concrete, and metal.

 

 

Andrew Hayes, "Dure," steel, book pages, paint

Andrew Hayes, “Dure,” steel, book pages, paint

Andrew Hayes
Andrew Hayes was honored as one of seventeen recipients of $10,000 Artist Fellowships from the North Carolina Arts Council for 2017. The fellows are chosen every two years from a talented pool of choreographers and visual, craft, and film/video artists. The Arts Council describes Andrew’s singular book and steel sculptures as “improbable objects of beauty.” They elaborate: “Formally, his sculpture has the spare elegance of mid-century modernism, each one an icon of untold meaning. But as much as his work may recall past styles and forms, it also boldly writes its own history and engages the viewer on its own terms.”

 

 

Jaydan Moore, "Ends," found silver-plated platters

Jaydan Moore, “Ends,” found silver-plated platters

Jaydan Moore
Jaydan Moore was also awarded one of this year’s North Carolina Arts Council Artist Fellowships. He works in metals, primarily with found silver-plated platters and other serviceware that he carefully deconstructs, recombines, and reassembles into new forms. As the Arts Council explains, these pieces “gain a protean quality as they transition to the next stage in their evolution, one that honors their past purpose and history and, at the same time, looks forward to the possibility of something unexpected.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Penland resident artists will hold an open studio tomorrow, October 21 at The Barns. Come by between 7-9 PM to meet the residents, see their spaces, and get a feel for their recent work.

 

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Photo(s) of the Week: The Thread Between

jessica-stitching

On a crisp and sunny afternoon, there may be nowhere on campus that gets better light than the weaving studio in Lily Loom. This fall, it is home to Rachel Meginnes’s concentration The Thread Between. Students in the workshop are learning to deepen their studio practices and develop a serious body of work through exercises with textiles, readings, writing assignments, discussions, presentations, and individual consultations. Here, studio assistant Jessica Green works on a cross stitch sample (above), and instructor Rachel Meginnes talks with studio assistant Marie Fornaro about her sewn paper samples (below).

 

rachel-and-marie

 

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NINE: 2016 Core Fellowship Exhibition

nine-small

 

Every year, the annual core show is a highlight of fall at Penland. It’s a remarkable event: nine core fellows come together to put on an exhibition, and they do all the parts themselves, from creating the work and designing publicity materials to preparing the space and curating the pieces within it.

This year’s show is titled NINE: 2016 Core Fellowship Exhibition. The work will span the range of Penland’s studios, from weaving and wooden furniture to objects in clay and concrete. In many ways, it’s a visual chronicle of one year in the lives of nine emerging artists—their ideas and explorations, their time, their energy, their passion.

Please join us on Friday, October 7th at 8 PM in Northlight to celebrate our core fellows as artists and as vital members of the Penland community. NINE will also be open for viewing October 8 and 9 from noon-6 PM and October 10 from 4-6 PM.

While the pieces below are just a small sampling of what will be up during the exhibition, they are absolutely representative of the creativity and skill that will be on display.

 

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Enameled metal tea set by Rachel Kedinger

 

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Linen and wool ikat dyed tapestry by Daniel Garver, 50 x 35 inches

 

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Maple and walnut entry table by Kyle Kulchar

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