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Auction Weekend in Photos

The following post contains a photo slideshow that is best viewed on the Penland blog.

First sign it's auction weekend: a big white tent.
These are our incredible 2018 auction volunteers. This weekend couldn't happen without their enthusiastic help and support!
Mia Hall welcomes Penland's Lucy Morgan Leaders to the Director's Luncheon.
The buffet at the Director's Luncheon always includes lots of produce right from the Penland garden.
On Friday afternoon, students and friends of woodworker Doug Sigler gathered to honor him as Penland's 2018 Outstanding Artist Educator.
Friday's afternoon festivities centered around the new Northlight complex. The auction was the first event in the space!
Artwork for Friday's silent and live auctions hanging in the new photography studio.
Two levels of porches provided ample space for catching up with friends and enjoying a drink.
Meanwhile, as the evening got darker, the tent lit up for Friday's live auction.
Each auction table was decorated with a unique centerpiece by one of Penland's core fellows or studio coordinators. Each one was made around the theme of "vessels." This blown glass vase is by Corey Pemberton.
Light rain on Friday evening made for a colorful parade from Northlight to the tent.
Friday night lights under the tent!
This dough bowl by Joshua Kuensting kicked off Friday's live auction.
A photograph by recent resident artist Mercedes Jelinek up for bidding.
A volunteer shows off Julia Woodman's cocktail ladle.
The action under the tent by night.
Happy bidders at the end of a successful Friday evening. Thanks to all for their generous support!
Friday evening finished off with coffee, dessert, a preview of Saturday's pieces, and live music outside Northlight.
Starting Saturday morning off with Coffee at the Barns, a favorite auction tradition.
Penland's resident artists welcome auction guests into their studios to see their most recent work.
Ceramic artist Kurt Anderson made the 500+ unique mugs for this year's auction, each one decorated with his signature creatures in different colors.
Auction guests visiting the studio of residents Maggie and Tom Jaszczak.
In the jewelry studio of resident artist Laura Wood.
Meanwhile, up at Northlight, Penland's core fellows also had an open house to show off their work.
The Core Fellows Open House in the new gallery space at Northlight.
Work up for bidding at Saturday's auction was displayed in the new social hall at Northlight (this shot was taken from the 2nd floor balcony!).
Thanks to our wonderful contributing artists for the beautiful pieces they donate to Penland and to our excellent volunteers for staging everything!
Admiring this year's featured piece, "8 Bats 4 Seasons" by Tim Tate.
Saturday morning photobooth shenanigans, complete with big creatures by Kurt Anderson and a bat or two for good measure.
Back for more! Saturday's auction kicks off with auctioneer Mark Oliver.
Paddles up!
"The Challenger," a large reduction woodcut by Jun Lee up for auction.
Corey Pemberton served as this year's auction captain. He also had the best suit.
Volunteers let their bat wings fly for bidding on Tim Tate's signature piece, "8 Bats 4 Seasons."
Volunteers taking it all in from a sunny perch outside the tent.
What a weekend! Thanks to everyone who made it such a success, including this stellar group. We'll see you next August 9-10 for the 2019 auction.

 

As the days turn cooler and the sun sets ever earlier, we’ve been thinking back to one of our favorite weekends from the height of summer: the 33rd Annual Penland Benefit Auction!

This year’s auction was a great success thanks to the hundreds of attendees, contributing artists, volunteers, sponsors, and Penland staff who gave their time, talent, energy, and more. It was a chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones, enjoy remarkable art, honor some important people in our community, celebrate Penland’s new Northlight complex, and relax in this beautiful mountain setting. Scroll through the photos above to relive a bit of the fun!

Here are a few facts and figures from auction weekend:

  • Attendees: 649
  • Volunteers: 182
  • Outstanding Artist Educator: Woodworker and longtime Penland instructor Doug Sigler
  • Featured piece: 8 Bats 4 Seasons, a mesmerizing mirrored “portal” by Tim Tate
  • Fund-A-Need project: Renovating Morgan Hall to use as a communal house for Penland interns
  • Works up for bidding: 233
  • Total art sales: $340,622
  • Total revenue: $640,107
  • Net revenue generated for Penland programs: $462,294

Next year’s auction will be held August 9-10, 2019. Mark your calendars and join us then!

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Generosity, Community, Love

Last week, on our 2nd annual Penland Giving Day, this community blew us away. We asked all of you to help us generate support for our programs by making gifts for a 24-hour period on October 3, and you really delivered—not just with generous donations, but also with love and enthusiasm and photos and stories from your own times at Penland. Our theme for the day was #WeMakePenland, and you all showed us just how true that is. It’s all together, through the many diverse acts of sharing and attention and creativity, that this community remains so strong and vibrant. Thank you.

It was an exciting day by the numbers: in 24 hours you made 342 gifts to Penland (42 more than our goal of 300!) totaling $21,170. All of this money will go directly to supporting our programs, studios, scholarships, staff, and more. You also helped us share just what makes the Penland experience so valuable by posting over 200 stories to social media with the hashtag #WeMakePenland. The themes that emerged from these stories—a chance to explore and learn, an opportunity to develop skills and confidence, and an invitation to join a deep and connected community—were absolutely the most gratifying, inspiring, and affirming part of our Giving Day. We are so energized by the positive impact Penland has had on so many of you, and we are so grateful to be able to continue that impact thanks to your ongoing love and support.

Penland School kitchen staff
Penland’s beloved kitchen crew getting into the #WeMakePenland spirit on October 3.

Below, we share a handful of your #WeMakePenland stories. Get inspired here by browsing many more like them.

“Nearly 10 years ago I became a resident artist at the Penland School of Crafts and my life changed… But, really, @penlandschool started changing my life 10 years before that when I took my first class. Since then Penland has given me time and space, community, beloved instructors, dear friends, and incredible conversations, and left an indelible mark on my heart.”
Amy Tavern, student, instructor, friend, and former resident artist

“One of my favorite parts about the 2 weeks that I spent teaching at @penlandschool was the event at the end where all of the students shared their work. There was such energy, excitement, pride in that room—the ecstatic exhaustion of the work of making.”
Aaron Cohick, Penland letterpress instructor

“Some of my favorite @penlandschool moments include walking back to my housing after working late into the night, feeling the best kind of tired, and passing the other brightly lit studios still active with people obsessed, just like me.”
Aalia Mujtaba, Penland student and metalsmith

“In 2008 I moved to @penlandschool to be a core fellow and it changed the trajectory of my life for the long haul. Penland is the place I learned to slow down. To work hard. To ask questions. To notice details. The place I worked alongside some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met. The place I was given the gift of time, to delve into my work in new ways. The place I met some of my best friends and my partner.”
Beth Schaible, Penland instructor and former core student

@penlandschool is one of my favorite places on earth because its freedom, tenacity, inspiration, friendship, innovation, courage, and love. Every day spent there is a gift, and every trip there has changed me.”
Lauren Faulkenberry, Penland instructor and winter resident

three #WeMakePenland posts from the Penland instagram community

three #WeMakePenland posts from Penland friends on Instagram

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Your Penland

Two photographs taken by Sarah Banko during her Penland workshop this summer

Well over 1,000 students and instructors passed through Penland’s studios this summer, and each one brought different talents, interests, ideas, and perspectives. That’s why we love seeing the variety of work our students make, browsing their photos, and hearing their stories—each one adds a new richness to the Penland experience.

Below, we share a few recent blog posts written by Penland students that illuminate a bit of that experience.

Sarah Banko

Studio assistant for Sally Van Gorder’s Narrative Photography workshop
“Two whole weeks of learning, teaching, relaxing in the mountains, taking photos, eating incredible food, meeting new people and so much more. It was an absolute blast and I cannot wait to return sometime in the near future, perhaps as a student next time to learn something completely new to me.”
See Sarah’s blog (and her gorgeous photographs!)

Brigitte Boucher

Student in Keith Wallace Smith’s workshop Figuring Out the Figure
“It’s hard to sum up my time there in a neat, simple way. Immersive, intense, transformative. Challenging yet fun. Inspiring and eye-opening. I learned a ton, pushed myself out of my comfort zone, met all kinds of wonderful people, lost track of time, and also got a clearer idea of what I might want to do next with my art.”
Read Brigitte’s thoughtful post and key takeaways

Elizabeth Busey

Student in Andy Rubin’s Monoprinting workshop
Our studio of twelve had artists from seniors in undergrad programs to people who were embracing art in their retirement. I spent almost all of my time in the studio, so I was able to experience the differing energies of the morning printers, and those who found their groove towards midnight. Everyone brought such generous energy and good will to the studio each day.
Read more about Elizabeth’s first time monoprinting

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The Penland Workshop Experience in 2-1/2 Minutes

We are excited to have a beautiful new short video thanks to the folks at Myriad Media in Raleigh. Last fall, Myriad spent a week at Penland using the campus as a location for a short, scripted piece they are hoping will become the pilot for a web series set in a place kind of like Penland.

Spike Hoban interviewing Kathleen Kennedy
Director Spike Hoban interviewing instructor Kathleen Kennedy.

After the actors left, the crew stayed for a few more days, conducting interviews and shooting activity in the studios. Then with lots of careful editing, sound mixing, music composing, tweaking, and more editing, they produced a lively 2-1/2 minute look at the Penland workshop experience.

Thanks to Sean, Spike, Max, and the whole crew at Myriad for this excellent piece of work. (Full screen recommended.)

YouTube: The Penland Workshop Experience

 

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July 4th Celebrations

Every summer, Penland celebrates the 4th of July much like the rest of the country—with picnics, with a parade, with fireworks. But when you get a whole community of creative people together, there are bound to be some extra quirks and flourishes that make the event memorable and uniquely “Penland.” This year was no different, thanks to the enthusiasm and flair of our students, instructors, staff, residents, and community. Here’s a look at some highlights from the most spirited day of the summer:

Picnic-ing in front of the Dye Shed

7:00 PM – Friends and families gathered on blankets and lawn chairs all along the road to chat, enjoy a picnic dinner or a drink, and wait for the festivities.

the head of the parade marches up Conley Ridge Rd

7:34 PM – Here comes the parade! A banner printed with the Declaration of Independence headed up this year’s procession, along with a Statue of Liberty costume, a pretty rad bowtie, and quotations from Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Paine, Theodore Roosevelt, and Patrick Henry.

plywood sculptures on parade

7:36 PM – Matthew Hebert’s wood students came marching by with the kinetic plywood sculptures they designed and made this session. There were snipping scissors, a frog with a moving tongue, a stove with flames that swirled as it rolled, an Uncle Sam statue with gesticulating arms, and more.

parade float with rainbows and a giant rat

7:40 PM – This epic float with rainbows and a giant hamster came rolling down the road. Parade entries are a reflection of the passions and priorities of Penland’s community, and pride and “Keep families together” were both recurring themes this year.

La Llorona float approaches with the mountain in the background

7:47 PM – The impressive La Llorona float, a joint effort between Martin Mazorra’s letterpress workshop and Jay Ryan’s screenprinting students, made its way past the knoll. This crew was also responsible for many of the gorgeous posters that were part of this year’s parade.

The fireworks crew brings up with rear in a pickup truck full of bottle rockets

7:54 PM – Penland’s facilities and grounds crew (aka fireworks show magicians) brought up the rear of the parade, along with 20,000 bottle rockets decked out in their rainbow finery.

core fellows serve up ice cream from big cardboard tubs

8:08 PM – Two big carts of vanilla and chocolate ice cream rolled out onto the Pines Portico, and a team of heroic core fellows started speed scooping.

Violet gets a bit messy eating chocolate ice cream

8:10 PM – The youngest members of the Penland community showed us all how to truly enjoy a cone.

the parade award for "Most Sparkliest Artist"

8:15 PM – Awards were given out to parade participants in a variety of silly and less-silly categories including “Over the Rainbow,” “Most Industrious,” “Dirtiest Clothes,” “Most Patriotic,” and “Most Sparkliest Artist.” Each award was handmade by students and instructors in Penland’s workshops.

sunset over the knoll while waiting for fireworks

8:37 PM – More picnicking and relaxing went down on the lawn while the sun set over the mountains. A bonfire burned out on the knoll, ready to ignite the bottle rockets that accompany the end of the fireworks show.

fireworks exploding over the knoll

9:28 PM – The first colorful explosions lit up the sky. Oohs and aahs quickly followed.

two views of Penland's fireworks finale

9:42 PM – The entire Penland campus burst into screams and applause as the fireworks reached their finale and 20,000 bottle rockets shot towards the sky. Dave and his crew really know how to put on a show, and dozens of folks commented that this year’s was the best one yet.

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate creativity and community with us! Let’s do it again next year.

See even more photos over on our Facebook album of the 2018 parade.

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Photo of the Week: Koichi Takes Flight

Instructor Koichi Yamamoto "flying" with one of his kites in the printmaking studio

We kicked off Penland’s 2018 summer sessions with fourteen high-energy workshops across our studios. And here in this photo by student Gregory Jundanian, two of them came together in a wonderfully surprising way. Gregory was in the Word & Image workshop with Christopher Benfey and Neal Rantoul, and he created this image of printmaking/kitemaking instructor Koichi Yamamoto in flight in the printmaking studio. There may or may not have been a little Photoshop involved, but who are we to reveal an artist’s secrets?

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Re-Crafting the Craft House

Front view of the Craft House with its iconic log porch and red roof
Penland’s Craft House. D. R. Beeson, the architect, incorporated natural materials into the building so it would coexist peacefully with its surroundings.

Penland’s Edward F. Worst Craft House is one of the most iconic buildings on campus. Its red roof and rustic log siding are the unofficial welcome sign to visitors as they round the curve in the road and the expanse of the knoll opens up before them. It’s also one of the most beloved buildings, as anyone who has spent a lazy afternoon on the rocking chairs sketching, thinking, or chatting could tell you. In the eight decades the Craft House has been a part of Penland, it has housed everything from students and studios to offices and the campus supply store and has served as a gathering place for our community to perform music, dance, tell stories, and simply relax.

Weavers on the Craft House porch in the 1950s.

A little history: the Craft House was built to house Penland’s weaving studio, and its construction was a true community event. Penland students, instructors, staff, and friends helped to raise funds for the structure by contributing $2.50 to purchase a log or a window sash. The two-day log raising took place in May 1935, and the windows, doors, fireplaces, chimneys, and other touches to finish the building were added over the next few years. The Craft House was named in honor of Edward F. Worst, an early and influential weaving instructor at Penland, and it was home to Penland’s weaving program until 1949. In December of 2003, the Penland School Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places, in large part because of the Craft House and the history it holds.

back view of Craft House and entrance to the supply store
The back side of the craft house shows the structure’s unique log and stone facade.

Unfortunately, the old saying “all you need is love” doesn’t quite hold true, at least not for large log structures. Over time, many of the soft poplar logs that clad the Craft House have deteriorated, and Penland is now embarking on a complex project to restore this beloved building. Together with a team that specializes in historic preservation, we have developed a restoration plan that will address repair and replacement needs while maintaining the Craft House’s special character.

The most visible part of this restoration project is the logs themselves. In fact, anyone who has been to campus this spring will have noticed the impressive stack of long, straight trunks in the parking lot adjacent to the Craft House. These trees have been cut locally from Penland’s 420-acre campus and will be used to replace sections of the original logs that show significant cracking or decay—roughly 16% of the building’s total logs. This aspect of the project will also include repairs to the chinking and daubing and additional reinforcements to anchor the log siding to the Craft House’s internal structure.

logs stacked near the Craft House to be used in the building restoration
Logs stacked and ready to be used in the Craft House restoration.

The Craft House’s windows, doors, porch, and roof will also receive attention as part of the project. This includes restoring the original paint scheme, bringing the porch railing up to current building codes, replacing siding shingles and sections of roof that have deteriorated, repairing the original stonework on the building’s steps, and fixing or replacing the sixty-nine windows on the upper floors. And for any student who has stayed in the Craft House and battled with summer insects at night, you’ll be glad to know that each window will also be outfitted with a screen!

All this work will be happening in the coming weeks now that more spring-like weather has arrived. We are delighted to be able to give the Craft House the care and attention that it needs to continue to serve as an important touchstone for our community, and we are grateful to the many generous supporters who have helped to make it happen. We can’t wait to share this process—and especially the final outcome—with all of you. Stay tuned as those logs in the parking lot get woven into the fabric of the building we know and love!

Invitation to the raising of the Craft House
Using cant hooks to maneuver one of the building's sizable logs. The woman in the foreground is Lucy Morgan's sister Anna Barr.
Penland founder Lucy Morgan (far right) at the Craft House raising
A delivery of logs to the north wall of the Craft House
The building takes shape against the mountain backdrop
Edward and Evangeline Worst standing next to the Craft House
Craft House Interior, 1935 (no windows or doors just yet!)
Students, instructors, staff, and visitors at the 1935 weaving institute.
The completed Craft House, late 1930s