Sonya Clark’s Beaded Prayers Project

Until November 17th, Sonya Clark’s Beaded Prayers Project is on display at the Eli Marsh Gallery at Amherst College in Boston. The project is now 20 years old, and contains the prayers/wishes/hopes of over 5,000 people from over 36 countries, sewn and beaded into a packet. Participants made two prayers – one to send to Clark, and one to keep. This is the 32nd venue to date.

Julie Powell in Ornament Magazine

Ornament is a lovely magazine. Subtitled the “Art and Craft of Personal Adornment,” it really is. The current issue has a feature article on Julie Powell and her beadwork, and is fully available online. Powell’s work was the inspiration for my recent multi-strand herringbone necklace. Enjoy!

North House Folk School at 20

In the classroom my leather tote bag class was held at North House Folk School is a splendid wall installation, with small samples showing the variety of craft at North House. From the information sheet:

In celebration of twenty years of hands-on learning at North House, all instructors, current and emeritus, intern alumni and staff were invited to contribute to [a] group project to reflect the broad range of skills, interest and materials that are part of North House Folk School. The project is comprised of individual pieces displayed as one work – a mosaic of craft. North House is unique in the ever-evolving array of traditional northern crafts that are part of the school and community. The finished piece is intended to convey the individual personalities and interests of the many members of our community as well as a larger sense of connection to North House, the folk school tradition and the northern landscape.

Enjoy the gallery below of some of my favorite selections. Click on any of the images to enlarge, and/or play it as a slideshow.


Beads at the 2017 American Craft Council show in Baltimore

The wholesale portion of the American Craft Council show in Baltimore opens tomorrow, February 22. On the 24th, the show is open to retail buyers; some artists do one show, some do both. I did a quick look through the show artists, and look at the bead artists I found:

Some of these artists use more seed beads than others, but if I were there, I’d stop to see them all! The links will show their booth numbers. Enjoy!

Material Mythologies at the Minnesota Museum of American Art

Recently closed in the Minnesota Museum of American Art’s Project Space is “Material Mythologies.” From the Museum’s description: “Material Mythologies brings together textiles, beading, metal, ceramic, and glass by five artists from around the country, all of whom are working at the edge of contemporary craft and sculpture…With their innovative use of functional and non-functional forms, some of which include thousands and thousands of intricately assembled pieces, these artists and their works decode some of the entrenched assumptions about craft as they relate to gender, labor, history, and what is considered fine art.”

Following are galleries of the artists included. First, Teri Greeves:

Next, Sonya Clark, who also recently gave a talk at the Minneapolis Institute of Art.

Mary Giles, whose work I’ve written about before, and who recently gave a talk to fellow American Craft Council staffers and volunteers:

Helen Lee:

Jae Won Lee:

A wonderful exhibit. I can’t wait until the MMAA is fully open!

Transformations: Homage to Nancy MacKenzie

I recently was fortunate enough to see the exhibition “Transformations,” of work by Nancy MacKenzie at the St. Catherine University’s Catherine G. Murphy Gallery in St. Paul. I have seen Nancy’s work on several occasions, and once had the opportunity to hear her speak many years ago at the Textile Center. I am grateful I was able to meet her, and later, her artist daughter, Erica Spitzer Rasmussen.

Nancy passed away last October, and Erica curated this exhibition of her work at the Catherine G. Murphy Gallery. To learn more about Nancy, you can read what the Textile Center wrote about her huge impact on the local textile scene and beyond. For more about her life, see the Star Tribune.

Erica chose works from two families of Nancy’s work. The fabric pieces are primarily composed of onion bags and the like, gathered from around the world (I remember this from her talk). Click on any image to see them larger.

The basket-like wall pieces are constructed of various flexible branches and waxed linen twine.

Some of these works I had seen before, and some were new to me. I love them all.

Beads at the flagship American Craft Council Show

There are more than 650 artists who have (or will be soon) putting up their booths for the 2016 American Craft Council show in Baltimore. I work for ACC, but I’m one of the stay-at-home staff. If you can go, keep an eye out for these beady people, who share my love for little beads:

The retail portion of the show is February 19-21. The links lead to their booth numbers, if you want to plan – with hundreds of artists, you may want to be sure you don’t miss the beads!