Annual Auction

Penland School of Craft Annual Benefit Auction

2020 benefit auction artwork

Join Us for the 35th Annual Penland Benefit Auction!

The Penland Benefit Auction is a gala event featuring the sale of roughly 200 works in books, clay, drawing, glass, iron, letterpress, painting, photography, printmaking, textiles, and wood. It is one of the most important craft collecting events in the Southeast and a perfect opportunity to support Penland’s educational programs, which have helped thousands of people live creative lives.

This year, we are re-imagining our 35th Annual Penland Benefit Auction as an online event! We’ll keep many of our favorite elements—including great art, a live auction, featured artists, special centerpieces, souvenir mugs, and more—while taking advantage of this platform to try some new things. The festivities will begin on August 1 with a week of silent auctions and will culminate on Saturday, August 8 with a live auction that will be streamed in real time right to your screen!

Please join us for the virtual auction August 1-8, 2020. To register, contact Ciara at or by phone at 828-765-2354 ext. 1209.


Schedule of Events

2020 Auction Catalog

Auction Kickoff—Saturday, August 1 at 2:00 PM!


Silent Auctions Are Open!

One hundred fifty-seven pieces of artwork are open for bidding Saturday, August 1 through Friday, August 7. The auctions begin at 3:00 PM and will run all week, closing between 6:00 and 6:15 PM on Friday.

  • Ticket holders will receive a personal bidding link via text and email. All donating artists have been entered as ticket holders.
  • If you have not received your link, please call our support team at 828-358-4697 so that they can re-send it. They can also help you navigate the bidding platform if you have any questions.
  • Please read this bidding guide for lots of important and helpful information!

Questions about the art? Please direct them to Grayson Sloan at 828-765-2354 ext. 1204.

Join us at the Virtual Cocktail Party Friday at 6:30 PM!

  • Put on a celebratory hat and your favorite brooch or necklace, and raise a glass with us!
  • Look for details Wednesday, August 5 on how to join the party in our auction e-newsletter or here on the auction page.
  • Cynosures open for purchase at 7:00 PM.

Livestream & Bidding Saturday

  • The final 20 pieces of art will be presented over a YouTube livestream on August 8. Don’t forget to check your sound and video quality here for the livestream.
  • The bidding will happen on the same bidding page as the silent auctions. You may want to use two devices, one for bidding and one for watching. Be sure to try your devices to decide what you like before the big day.

Patron Bidding Guide
A short video to help you fine tune your livestream bidding experience


Share your auction experience with us!
Each year we put together a slideshow at the end of the auction and we’d love to continue that tradition. Send us photos of you with your handmade mug, in your cocktail party attire, or fervently bidding during the livestream! Please direct them to or use #PenlandAuction on social media.

Auction Week at the Penland Gallery

Three online exhibitions to explore, shop, and enjoy!

Contemporary Jewelry
[about | shop]

ADAPT | Resilience through Craft
2020 Penland Resident Artists
[about | shop]

2020 Penland School Core Fellows
[about | shop]


Meet Penland’s Artists

In an effort to help you get to know the many talented artists who are at the heart of Penland’s auction, workshops, and residencies, we’ve made a series of videos introducing some of them. Please find those below, or see all artists contributing to this year’s auction right here.

2020 Featured Artists

Penland Resident Artists

Penland Core Fellows

Nine short videos about the nine talented artists in our Core Fellowship Program. Watch them all here.

SaraBeth Post
Tony Santoyo
Erica Schuetz
Hannah Mitsu Shimabukuro
Mia Kaplan
Scott Vander Veen
Molly Bernstein
Maria Fernanda Nuñez
Sarina Angell


2020 Auction Sponsors

Thank you to the generous sponsors contributing to the 35th Annual Penland Benefit Auction! Their support makes auction week possible.


SOFA Chicago 2020
American Craft Council
David H Ramsey Commercial Photography
WNC magazine
Society of North American Goldsmiths/Metalsmith magazine
The Laurel of Asheville magazine
Sculpture magazine
Sysco Foods of Knoxville
Highland Brewing
Blue Ridge Printing
Clif Bar & Company


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Sponsor this remarkable event in 2021! 
Call Marianna Popp with inquiries at 828-765-2359 x 1205.

Advertise in the Benefit Auction Catalog
Contact Grayson Sloan at 828-765-2359 x 1204 to place an ad in next year’s auction catalog.

For additional information, call 828-765-2359 or email