Friday, January 31, 2014

3rd Street Visits Fairfax

Last week Otis professor and artist JT Steiny visited two Fairfax classes-- Digital Imaging and AP Photography-- to talk to students about the art of drawing, comics and book-making. He discussed his career path and process and then guided students through creating and constructing mini-zines of their own.

Our program with Fairfax is a relatively new one-- this was the first classroom visit by an artist, after students came to see Hidde van Dyum's work when it was exhibited at the Center several months ago. We're thrilled to be partnering with schools in the community to bring dynamic speakers and new experiences into the classroom, broadening student horizons and introducing them to art as craft, lifestyle and profession.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Hearts in Our Windows

With Valentine's Day around the corner, Craft in America is pleased to announce the installation of new work in our window: a series of hand-crafted hearts made in a collaboration between Fairfax Visual Arts Magnet teacher Denise Davis and her students. Inspiration for the project came from a recent trip to Quebec, funded by the National Artist Teacher Fellowship, where Davis visited examples of ex-votos: paintings, objects or sculptures expressing thankfulness, which are most commonly found in churches. Gratefulness has been an important theme in Davis' life ever since she was laid off from her job two years ago, only to be re-hired as school began again in September.

Sacred hearts are the most common form of three-dimensional ex-voto, so to create Every Good Thing Davis created twenty seven secular cast-paper hearts and then handed one to each of her twenty seven Advanced Placement Studio Art students, who then wrote a story on the theme of giving thanks and decorated a heart to correspond to their story.

Denise Davis has worked on a variety of photography, video, sculpture and installation projects over the last several years. Her interests include cinema, psychology, pop culture and fringe sciences.

In addition to recent solo shows at Marx Zavattero in San Francisco and L2K in Los Angeles, Denise has exhibited at the Linda Warren Gallery in Chicago, the Riverside Art Museum, the Chelsea Museum of Art, the Ulrich Museum of Art and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, among other venues.

Her work is in the collections of the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Ulrich Museum of Art, California State University Los Angeles, California State Polytechnic University Pomona, Cypress College and the Kinsey Research Institute as well as many private collections.

Denise has a MFA degree in Art/Photography from the California Institute of the Arts. Santa Monica Press published a book of her photographs, Childish Things, in 2004.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

UncommonGoods has just launched their woodworking design challenge! They’re on the hunt for designs with wood as a featured material.  So if you're a crafter looking to make the leap into the commercial world, submit your best wood design for a chance to win $500 and an UncommonGoods vendor contract!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Passing it On: From Bernard Leach to Jeff Oestreich to the Midwest and Beyond

Tonight marks the debut of our latest show, Passing it On: From Bernard Leach to Jeff Oestreich to the Midwest and Beyond. From now through March 8, the Craft in America Center will feature an exhibition of work by acclaimed potter Jeff Oestreich and the circle of artists who have passed through his studio in Minnesota from the early 1970s to the present.

Jeff will visit to participate in a roundtable on keeping pottery traditions alive on February 22 at 5:00 pm.  It's sure to be a fascinating (and packed!) event, so if you're planning on coming, please RSVP.

Oestreich was trained in the austere simplicity of traditional Asian pottery while serving as an apprentice to Bernard Leach in England in the 1960s. Upon his return to the states in 1971, he began to disseminate Leach’s legacy to numerous American ceramists who have carried the messages forward. This exhibition will reflect the passing on of traditions, attitudes, studio and making practices, and aesthetic values. It will pay homage to Oestreich’s role as an influential voice in contemporary pottery.

The artists he has invited to participate in the exhibition have each forged their own careers and attained the highest accolades for their work. Featured artists from the U.S. include Randy Johnston, Pat Burns, Andy Balmer, Linda Christianson, Scott Goldberg, George Rector, Malcolm Davis, Gail Kendall, Posey Bacopoulos, Marlene Jack, Charlie Maag and Tim Heil. From abroad, there are: John Dawson, Renton and Rosie Murray, Micki Schloessingk, Sandy Lockwood, Neil Hoffmann, and Greg Crowe.