Education in the Community

craftXws: Traditions and Innovations in Fine Craft

Piedmont Craftsmen is excited to announce a partnership with the New Winston Museum and the Center for Design and Innovation to present three Salon Series events titled craftXws: Traditions and Innovations in Fine Craft.   The series will focus on the crafts movement in Winston-Salem, past, present and future.  Artists, collectors and historians will be featured in each of three New Winston Museum Salon Series: craftXws presentations.

The first in the series, The Craft Tradition in Winston-Salem, will be held on Thursday, April 27th from 5:30 till 7:00PM.   The Salon Series will be held at the Center for Design and Innovation at 450 Design Ave (near Salem College).  These educational events are free and open to the public.

The first panel discussion includes moderator, Michael Wakeford, NWM Board Chair and Associate Professor, Division of Liberal Arts at UNCSA, and four presenters:

  • Johanna Brown, MESDA, Curator of Moravian Decorative Arts and Director of Collections.
  • Cheryl Harry, Director of African American programing at Old Salem Museums & Gardens.  Founder, Triad Cultural Arts and author of, Winston-Salem’s African American Legacy.
  • Tomi Melson, fiber artist and exhibiting member of Piedmont Craftsmen since 1973. Former Assistant Director of the Sawtooth School and former Executive Director of Piedmont Craftsmen.
  • Ron Propst, ceramic artist, Arts District pioneer, former Sawtooth School teacher, and exhibiting member of Piedmont Craftsmen since 1968.

Discussions will explore the varied historical and contemporary dimensions of the area’s craft practice, beginning with the Moravian settlement, through the diverse contributions of the 19th and mid-20th century craft revivalism, to the evolving frontier of fine craft in our current tech-steeped arts and innovation landscape.  What explains this region’s particularly deep affinity for collecting fine craft, the strong institutions dedicated to craft education, and the enduring practice of making by hand?

The second presentation in the New Winston Museum Salon Series is Craft, Technology, Innovation on Thursday, May 18th.   The third in the series is Objects and Memories on Thursday, June 15th.  Presenters and moderators will be announced by the end of April for the second and third presentations.

How 2 Nights

Craftsmen Demos and Lectures with an Arts District Twist
Free and open to the public, in the Gallery

Piedmont Craftsmen will present an ongoing series of programs linked to our featured monthly exhibitions in the Gallery at 601 N. Trade.  Artists will come talk about their work, explaining or, in some cases, demonstrating how they do what they do.  The twist?  Some of your other favorite Arts District businesses will join us as well.

Hands, Home, HeART

A Partnership with Forsyth Co. Habitat for Humanity

The early 20th century British designer William Morris said “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”  He also said, “I do not want art for a few any more than education for a few, or freedom for a few.”    Piedmont Craftsmen poses the question – Shouldn’t everyone have the opportunity to have useful things of beauty in their lives?

For many in our community it is a dream to simply have a home.  For Habitat’s Partner Families, the dream is within sight.  During the year prior to becoming a home owner, these individuals must put in hundreds of hours in sweat equity and they must take classes called “Homeworks”, to prepare them for home ownership.  "Hand, Home, HeART" explores the idea of home as a sanctuary.  Piedmont Craftsmen’s and other Winston-Salem artists are leading artistic classes, open to all the adults and teens in the Partner Families, held at Habitat’s home on Witt Street.

Based on several meetings with an advisory panel made up of Partner Families, we plan to offer seven to eight different projects/classes.   Artists who have agreed to be part of this program include: Kathy Cooper, floorcloth artist; Veronica and David Bennett, stained glass; fiber artist, Paige Cox; and mixed media artists,  Bryant Holsenbeck and Jan Detter.  Other artists will be contacted as project themes are decided.

This project was made possible, in part, with funding by The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County and the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Cultural Resources, and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.

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