Craft school directors celebrate launch of national initiative at Special Exhibit opening at SOFA Chicago. L to R: Kristin Muller, Peters Valley; Jim Baker, Pilchuck; Stu Kestenbaum, Haystack; Jean McLaughlin, Penland; Bill May, Arrowmont
Five of the leading craft schools in the US, including: Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Penland School of Crafts, Peters Valley School of Craft, and Pilchuck Glass School have joined together to launch a national initiative at SOFA CHICAGO celebrating the importance of the craft school experience.
While maintaining the individuality and distinction of each organization, this dynamic collective is exploring the values, communities and opportunities that join them as a movement. Internationally-renowned instructors, intensive and focused studios, the time for exploration of other art forms, diverse student bodies and communities, and award-winning campuses with acclaimed exhibition spaces are just a few of their extraordinary similarities. Through their combined efforts they are working to promote and encourage education and excellence in craft by emphasizing their unique opportunities for students to be fully focused and present in a creative manner. Most importantly, though, there is an affirmation for this particular type of educational experience; which for many is thought provoking, inspiring and sometimes life-changing.
This interactive exhibit strives to capture the essence of the craft school experience by featuring the artworks of master teachers, resident artists, and students who have studied or taught at one or more of the participating schools. Surrounded by personal narratives, quotes, videos, and audio accounts, these works demonstrate the tremendous conceptual and artistic progress possible in this transformative style of education. From a variety of voices and first-hand perspectives, this unique exhibit highlights the connection between creativity and meaningful craft school experiences.
Presented artists include: Christa Assad, Raissa Bump, David Ellsworth, Arthur Gonzalez, Dante Marioni and John McQueen
Curated by Bill May, Director, Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts, Gatlinburg, TN; Stuart Kestenbaum, Director, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Deer Isle, ME; Jean McLaughlin, Director, Penland School of Crafts, Penland, NC; Kristin Muller, Director, Peters Valley School of Craft, Layton, NJ; Jim Baker, Director, Pilchuck Glass School, Seattle, WA.
Presented by Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Penland School of Crafts, Peters Valley School of Craft, and Pilchuck Glass School in collaboration with Social Impact Studios
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