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Announcing Five New Penland Resident Artists

We are excited to introduce five extraordinary artists who will be joining the Penland Resident Artist Program next spring. This year, Penland added the option of a one-year residency to the traditional duration of three-years. Geoffrey Bowton and Kimberly Thomas will come as three-year resident artists; Adam Grinovich and Annika Pettersson (collaborating partners) and Sarita Westrup proposed to spend one year and were selected to help us launch this new residency model. All five will arrive in March 2024 and will join current residents Daniel Garver, Sean O’Connell, and Sarah Vaughn who each have another year in the program.

Penland’s resident artists are full-time artists who spend one to three years living on campus and dedicating themselves to a proposed project or career transition. Many residents use this time to explore new ideas and directions, undertake ambitious projects, or develop new bodies of work. Please join us in welcoming Geoffrey, Kimberly, Adam, Annika, and Sarita! We are looking forward to having them join the Penland community in March.

Meet the artists!

Geoffrey Bowton

“Standing for the disabled veteran community, I feel my voice can become an inclusive vehicle and deliver new conversations to social spaces…I believe that Penland supports individuals who address critical issues in their communities and prove meaningful change through creative and cultural expression.”

Adam Grinovich and Annika Pettersson

“We see this residency as an opportunity to fully focus [on our studio practice rather than teaching] and create bodies of work—both individually and collectively—to become engaged with craft communities and participate in the conversation of contemporary craft.”

Kimberly Thomas

“I am part of a new generation of contemporary glass artists. The support of and connection to a community who shares similar professional, intellectual and creative goals [will] offer me opportunities to inspire others and learn from them.”

Sarita Westrup

“Rooted in weaving techniques and bricolage, my sculptural basketry works are inspired by where I was born and raised, the Rio Grande Valley on the Texas-Mexico border…I feel there is a momentum right now in my work that requires the attention and care which the Penland residency [will] provide.”

Selection Committee

Resident artists are recommended by a national committee of artists, curators, educators, and professionals who are knowledgeable about material-based work and understand what it takes to be successful in a self-directed residency. Panelists rotate frequently to bring a range of perspectives to the application review process. We received an outpouring of excellent applications this year, and it was a challenging task to select only five artists. Penland would like to extend a huge thank you to our review panelists who generously offered their collective insight to lively discussions and nuanced decisions.

Cristina Córdova, studio artist and educator; 2015 USA artist fellow; author of The Figure in Clay; former three-year Penland resident artist.

David Clemons, studio artist and educator; 2021 James Renwick Alliance Master of the Medium; former head of the metalsmithing and jewelry department at University of Arkansas in Little Rock.

Sarah Darro, curator, writer, and visual anthropologist; curator and exhibitions director at Houston Center for Contemporary Craft; 2019 American Craft Council Emerging Voices Scholar awardee; 2020 Curatorial Research Fellow in Modern and Contemporary Glass at the Corning Museum of Glass

Wendy Maruyama, furniture maker, artist and educator; professor emerita at San Diego State University; 2020 US A Fellowship; Penland board of trustees.

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Penland Summer 2023!

Co-instructors Sofia Hagstrӧm Møller and Marianne Fairbanks rest in the sun with studio assistant Maia Therese Rauh

Thank you to everyone who made this Penland summer special. We learned so much from each other, peeking in on and collaborating with workshops in different media, gaining fresh perspectives from beginners, and putting hard-won advice from instructors and advanced students to use.

In a world of distractions and diversions, students who come to Penland for an intensive workshop often describe a transformative experience, gaining not only skills but a deep connection with others and with themselves. Here at Penland, we work hard to create an environment that fosters this alchemy.

That said, we know that it is the open hearts and curious minds of our students and guest instructors that truly cast the spell. May your Penland summer pay dividends for you throughout the year and may you return soon to share with us once more. 

Tomorrow is the first day of fall. On Sunday, we will begin our Fall Short Session. As we prepare for the autumn season and all the good things it will bring, now feels like the perfect time to reflect back upon the special time and place that was Penland Summer 2023!

Summer Stats

Workshops- 103
Students- 1,139
Instructors- 124
New Instructors– 46%
Students receiving financial assistance– 51%
States– 49 and 2 US territories
Countries– 13
Kids camps– 9
Money raised for scholarships– $83,420

Workshops in 16 Studios

We ran workshops in the clay, books, paper, drawing, painting, glass, iron, metals, photography, print, letterpress, textiles, and wood studios! Sarita Westrup’s “Sculptural Basketry” workshop is seen here with some impressive finished work.

124 Amazing Guest Instructors

Instructor Paige Davis taught us forging techniques with a focus on sculpture in the iron studio.

Instructor Gasali Adeyemo’s workshop focused on traditional Yoruba dyeing techniques with indigo.

Instructor Kelly O’Dell worked with students to create this impressive piece in her hot glass workshop, “Rewilding,” which she cotaught with her partner Raven Skyriver.

Students of All Levels

Student Peter Renzetti demonstrated his tiny trip hammer during a raising workshop with Douglas Pryor. A well-known blacksmith with a lot of experience using big power hammers, Peter decided to build a version of that for very small work. Watching are iron instructor Shingo Furukawa and students from various workshops.

Student Sofia Klimkowski Arango created an inflated steel piece in Mike Rossi’s iron workshop, Forged By Design.”

Studio assistant Michelle Solorzano made this large sculpture during Cristina Córdova’s clay workshop,Build Big: Essential Methods for Large-Scale Success.”


Photography students found some excellent subjects on the clay kiln pad.

Students in Paulo Arao’s “Behind the Seams” workshop worked together to make this quilt, which they generously donated to help raise funds for Penland scholarships.

Better Together Residency

In collaboration with Crafting the Future, Better Together residents spent two weeks working on personal project and collaborating in the Penland clay and glass studios. 

Better Together resident Murjoni Merriweather was prolific in clay studio.


Many families shared a Penland experience this summer. Glass instructor Sayaka Suzuki invited her mom, who lives in Japan, to join her at Penland for a two-week workshop in the paper studio with instructor Jaz Graf.


We made friends! This lunchtime photo was captured by student Becca Martinez.

Furry Friends

We shared our campus with some interesting creatures this summer. This skunk print was created by student Kelsey Gruber during Jenny Schmid’s print workshop, “Intense Color Intaglio Intensive.”

Summer Interns

Working in studios, offices, classrooms, and events, our summer interns brought curiosity, intent, and enthusiasm to their work and play. They helped us raise money for scholarships, keep the kilns going, tell our story, and pull off the Penland Benefit Auction. They helped kids fall in love with craft and they made our summers more interesting. Thank you to studio interns Kai Samuels, Abigail Leonard, and Kris Powell, development interns Ethan Helow, Mindy Yi, and Astrid Guerrero, and kids camp intern Greta Lapp Klassen for a wonderful summer.

Penland Staff

Penland staff worked tirelessly to pull off over 100 workshops. Here glass and clay studio coordinators Nick Fruin and Susan Feagin as captured by summer intern Kris Powell

Area Studio Visits

Students visited many of the artists who live and work nearby, like studio potter and former Penland Resident Artist Michael Kline.

Exhibitions at the Penland Gallery

We enjoyed thoughtful exhibitions in Penland’s John and Robyn Horn and Focus galleries. “wild and precious life” featured works from artists Nancy Blum, Kim Cridler, and Lisa A. Frank.

Open Studios at the Barns

Over the summer, many students enjoyed visiting The Barns, where the Penland Resident Artists have their studios.

Colorful, slipcast ceramics were on display in Penland Resident Artist Daniel Garver’s studio.

Slide Nights

From 8:15 to 9:00 PM during most sessions, we gathered to enjoy slide presentations from visiting instructors and studio assistants. We learned a lot!

Summer in the Mountains

Summer in the mountains means walks in the woods, campfires, Blue Ridge Mountain views, and trips to the cool river. Photo by student Konrad Sanders.

Show and Tell

At the end of each session, we gathered in Northlight to view the work created by each workshop.

These tables were created by students during Tom Huang’s workshop, “A la Carte.”

Students in Leeah Joo’s workshop, “Trompe L’oeil Oil Painting” displayed their impressive work.

Scholarship Auctions

Over the summer, we enjoyed five amazing scholarship auctions, in which work created and donate by students and instructors was auctioned to support Penland’s robust scholarship program. Not only were these affairs a ton of raucous fun, they also raised a total of $83,420 to support Penland’ scholarships. We are so grateful to everyone who made these events a success, from the generous donors to the lucky winners to the wonderful development interns, dedicated staff members, and volunteer auctioneers. Thank you for paying it forward!

Kids Camp

Our community collaborations team put on nine wonderful camps for kids this summer, exploring crafts from woodworking to creating their own butterfly wings for the annual Handmade Parade. 

Handmade Parade and Fireworks

This annual event put a lot of smiles on our faces. Click HERE for more photos of the fun!

Annual Penland Benefit Auction Auction

We closed out our summer with the 38th Annual Penland Benefit Auction, raising over $500,000 to support our mission of making lives meaningful through making. Thank you to our patrons, contributing artists, sponsors, volunteers, interns, and staff. Our annual auction is a labor of love, from the creation of unique artwork to that special weekend when we gather to celebrate craft, Penland, and each other. Read more HERE.

This piece by student Alison Rosen, created during Aurélie Guillaume’s “Telling Stories in Cloisonné” workshop, really sums up our summer.

Interested in joining us next year?

Thank you to each and every person who join us this summer. We hope you will return soon, and here are some important dates to keep in mind!

  • Registration for spring workshops begins on October 2.
  • Summer 2024 workshop information will be posted on October 15th.
  • Summer scholarship applications will open on October 15th with a November 15 deadline.
  • Regular summer registration will begin on January 15th.

Sign up for our newsletter to keep up with important dates.

Find more photos from summer 2023 HERE!

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Over $500,000 raised at the Penland Benefit Auction!

200 astonishing works found new homes and inspired bidding wars

We wore pearls to honor Outstanding Artist Educator Elizabeth Brim, learned the surprising secret to Lucy Morgan Award recipient Julia Woodman’s success, funded climate control while fanning ourselves, and, as our Director Mia Hall so movingly put it, celebrated “our collective awe at what we humans can make with our hands.”

We spent the weekend basking in the presence of friends, new and old, breathtaking examples of contemporary craft, and our favorite views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and The Penland Knoll.

We enjoyed artist demonstrations, silent auctions, gallery talks, a Core Fellows popup, a lively cocktail party, coffee at The Barns with the Penland Resident Artists, and a much anticipated live auction under the tent.

See all the photos HERE!

Auction guests selected unique mugs while enjoying breakfast at The Barns with the Penland Resident Artists. 2023 mug‒maker Cat Coulter Lloyd is seen here (left) with Harriet Green (right)

We raised $502,191!

Auctioneer Jesse Miller is always a crowd favorite! Volunteer “Vanna” Jennifer Rankin shows off a special vase that was pinch-formed by the late Paulus Berensohn and decorated by Jenny Mendes.

More than 200 inspiring works of art, donated by generous invited artists with Penland connections, found new homes as we harnessed our revelry to raise sustaining funds that will support Penland’s programs.

Together we raised $502,191 to further our mission of making lives meaningful through making. Thank you to all of the donating artists, collectors, and donors!

This year’s “Fund a Need” invited guests to directly support climate control upgrades to Penland’s campus. Attendees were sympathetic to the need in the face of unseasonably warm temperatures. We are excited to report that we surpassed our goal of $100,000, raising $108,700 for HVAc upgrades that will help preserve aging buildings and provide greater comfort for our students and instructors.

Fans were a theme of the weekend as we raised $108,700 for HVAC upgrades that will help preserve aging buildings and provide greater comfort for our students and instructors. Auction captain Corey Pemberton helped us get excited about climate control!

Special Honors

Featured artists Tanya Crane (right) and Dan Estabrook (left)

At the 38th Annual Penland Benefit Auction, it was our great honor to celebrate the contributions of featured artists Tanya Crane and Dan Estabrook. To mark the occasion, thoughtful short films about Tanya and Dan were commissioned and screened at the event (Click their names to view).

Julia Woodman, pictured here with her piece “Computer Aided Pine Cone” was the first recipient of the Lucy Morgan Award.

Receiving the first ever Lucy Morgan Award in honor of her special relationship with Penland, Julia Woodman was presented with a lovely necklace, crafted for the occasion by longtime friend Merrick Earle who took a Penland workshop with Julia. Upon receiving her award, Julia, who has taken 26 Penland workshops, remarked, “I can’t believe I’m being honored for having fun.” Julia spoke movingly of her trepidation about going back to school after raising her family and shared an intimate detail about her life: for the past forty years, a group of monks has been praying for her five times a day. Read more about Julia’s extraordinary journey HERE.

Lucy Morgan Award necklace by Merrick Earle

Honored as this year’s Outstanding Artist Educator, Elizabeth Brim spent the weekend surrounded by some of the many blacksmiths that she has inspired, mentored, and learned from over the years. Many took the opportunity to wear pearls in honor of Elizabeth’s habit of always wearing pearls at the forge. At the main event, tables under the tent were adorned with custom centerpieces, created by 20 of Elizabeth’s friends. At a special price of $395, these “cynosures” helped kick off the live auction with a race to claim them, raising over $15,000 for Penland.

Guests rushed to acquire the steel centerpieces, created in honor of Outstanding Artist Educator Elizabeth Brim. These steel pearls were created by Susan Owen (right) and Charles Coffey. Beth Kokol (left) was excited to acquire this special piece!

Contributing cynosure artists:
Vivian Beer, Autumn Brown, James D. W. Cooper, Maegan E. Crowley, Andy Dohner, Seth Gould, Warren Holzman, Marvin Jensen, Rachel Kedinger, Dave MacDonald, Marc Maiorana, Zack Noble, Susan Owen and Charles Coffee, Suzanne Pugh, John J Rais, Mike Rossi, James Viste, Haley Woodward, and Stephen Yusko.

A special event honoring Elizabeth was held at the Northlight mezzanine as friends and peers gathered around to share stories and let Elizabeth know what she has meant to the Penland, craft, and blacksmithing communities. Under the main tent, just before the live auction, Elizabeth addressed the crowd. Overcome with emotion, she spoke about her journey to independence through blacksmithing and how her father “relaxed a little” when she bought herself a used pickup truck “with money I made from selling my first pair of high heeled shoes and an apron sculpture.” Addressing the crowd of friends, Elizabeth said,

I’ve always said I needed to be very good to deserve all of the opportunities I have been given. To stand here receiving this award as somebody who encouraged, influenced and taught people to be the best they can be is an immense honor and validation. I am extremely grateful to the Penland School of Craft and to all of you for supporting this wonderful place.

We are grateful to have friends like Tanya, Dan, Julia, and Elizabeth working to make Penland a special place for us all.

Standing room only for Elizabeth Brim!

Elizabeth Brim together with many of the artists who contributed custom steel centerpieces in her honor. 

Thank You!

Our hearts are full! Thank you to everyone who made the 38th Annual Penland Benefit Auction a great success. Thank you to our patrons, contributing artists, sponsors, volunteers, summer interns and staff. Our annual auction is a labor of love, from the creation of unique artwork to that special weekend when we gather to celebrate craft, Penland, and each other. Thank you!

Summer intern Mindy helped make the 38th Annual Benefit Auction a great success. Thank you to development interns Mindy Yi, Ethan Helow, and Astrid Guerrero!

Wonderful volunteers make the Penland Benefit Auction possible (and fun)!

2023 Contributing Artists

View the 38th Annual Penland Benefit Auction Catalog HERE.

Contributing artists: Cathy Adelman, Stanley Mace Andersen, Eleanor Anderson, Kurt Anderson, Sarina Angell, Eleanor Annand, Adam Atkinson, Dan Bailey, Phillip Baldwin, Boris Bally, Kenneth Baskin, Cat Bates, Rick Beck, Vivian Beer, Paulus Berensohn, 1933-2017, Alex Bernstein, Lisa Blackburn, Cynthia Bringle, Edwina Bringle, Autumn Brown, Ashley Buchanan, Jennifer Bueno, Thor and Jennifer Bueno, Jay Burnham-Kidwell, Stormie Burns, Critz Campbell, Ken Carder, Jason Chakravarty, Pattie Chalmers, Rebecca Chamlee, Daniel G. Clayman, David Harper Clemons, Martha Clippinger, Ann Coddington, Margaret Couch Cogswell, Kat Cole, Andrèa Keys Connell, James D. W. Cooper, Béatrice Coron, Nate Cotterman, Tanya Crane, Maegan E. Crowley, Marianne Dages, Naomi Dalglish and Michael Hunt; Bandana Pottery, Jennifer Ling Datchuk, Paige Hamilton Davis, Nick DeFord, Dail Dixon, Andy Dohner, Sondra Dorn, Ben Dory, Caroline Douglas, Beth Dow, Lynn Duryea, David Eichelberger, Rostislav Eismont, Catharine Ellis, Sanam Emami, Melissa Engler, Daniel Essig, Vicki Essig, Dan Estabrook, Annie Evelyn, Lauren Faulkenberry, Susan Feagin, Shane Fero, Alida Fish, Susie Ganch, Rachel K. Garceau, Daniel Garver, Greg Gehner, Terry Gess, Joanna Gollberg, Seth Gould, Carmen Grier, Bill Griffith, Hoss Haley, Mia Hall, Frank Hamrick, Douglas Harling, Abie Harris, Julia Harrison, LUKE Haynes, James Henkel, Adriane Herman, Mark Hewitt, Leigh Anne Hilbert, Overlap Sewing Studio, Morgan Hill, Everett Hoffman, Warren Holzman, Tom Huang, Mi-Sook Hur, Maggie Jaszczak, Tom Jaszczak, Mercedes Jelinek, Marvin Jensen, Nicholas Joerling, Anna Johnson, David Jones, Frederick Gladding Kahl, Erin Keane, Rachel Kedinger, Alicia D Keshishian, Kathy King, Jeana Eve Klein, Julie Leonard, Maia Leppo, Suze Lindsay, Janet Link, Tara Locklear, Dave MacDonald, Warren Mackenzie, 1924-2019, Edna Madera, Marc Maiorana, James Malenda, Jeannine Marchand, Richard Margolis, Lauren Markley, Courtney Martin, Lydia Martin, E. Vincent Martinez, Sharon Massey, Tim McCreight, Barbara McFadyen, Laura Jean McLaughlin, Jenny Mendes, Forrest Middelton, Cedric Mitchell, Jim Moran, Morgan, Zack Noble, Maria Fernanda Nuñez Alzate, Libby O’Bryan and Giovanni Daina Palermo (Rite of Passage), Sean O’Connell, Marsha Owen, Susan Owen and Charles Coffey, Winnie Owens-Hart, Kristina Paabus, Keun Ho Peter Park, Kit Paulson, Lisa Pedolsky, Anne Petters, Kenny Pieper, Andrew Polk, Kathryn Polk, Dan Price, Graeme Priddle, IlaSahai Prouty, Suzanne Pugh, Amy Putansu, John J Rais, Billy Renkl, Ché Rhodes, Ellie Richards, Sang Parkinson Roberson, Linda Foard Roberts, Holly Roberts, Emily Rogstad, Sylvie Rosenthal, Mike Rossi, Andy Rubin, Kari Russell-Pool, Alyssa Salomon, Blue Skies Workroom, Yolanda Sánchez, Wyatt Severs, Hitomi Shibata, Takuro Shibata, Lars Shimabukuro, Gertrude Graham Smith, Tremain Smith, Kevin Snipes, Liz Sparks, Leigh Suggs, Lynn Sures, Tim Tate, Amy Tavern, Janet Taylor, Shoko Teruyama, Demitra Thomloudis, Bob Trotman, Marlene True, Julia Turner, Sarah E Vaughn, James Viste, Eileen Wallace, Paul Andrew Wandless, Tali Weinberg, Sarita Westrup, Adam Whitney, Hayden Wilson, Laura Wood, Julia Woodman, Haley Woodward, Danni Xu, Hiroko Yamada, Kensuke Yamada, Stephen Yusko, Mary Zicafoose.

Thank you!