Wednesday, September 08, 2010

The Washington Craft Show / November 19-21

Honoring the Past, Celebrating The Present at the Washington Craft Show
This Juried Event Features 190 of the Nation’s Most Accomplished Craft Artists

Fri. Nov. 19, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Sat. Nov. 20, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. 
Sun. Nov. 21, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Washington, DC -- Artists often are inspired by nature, and many find motivation in the world around them. Paying tribute to the past and honoring one’s heritage are also important to many artisans, who sometimes spend years conducting research in order to create artwork that combines historical techniques with contemporary forms.

“Liquor Set (3 Glasses)” by Valeri Timofeev, East Stroudsburg, PA
18k gold, diamonds, Plique-a-Jour” enamel, aluminum base.  Plique à jour is the same technique used by the 
French enamellists Lalique and Feuillâtre in the 1900s and by Fabergé and other noted Russian jewelers before that. 
The French term means "glimpse of day" and describes how the light shines through the rich, lustrous enamel color.
Dimensions: 8” H X 6” W X 6” D Inches  Price $36,000.00. One Of A Kind.

Image courtesy of the artist

Such is the case with many of the artists who will exhibit their work at the 23rd annual Washington Craft Show, including Latvian-born jeweler Valeri Timofeev (b. 1941), who is considered the modern day master of a technique known as “plique à jour,” a French phrase which means “light of day,” or “open to light.”

First popular with the public in the late 19th century, and perhaps best known by the eggs of Carl Fabergé, plique à jour is a technique in which translucent enamels are fused to span a network of gold, silver or copper wire, with no metal backing under the glazed areas.  When light shines through the enamel it produces an effect similar to that of a stained-glass window.

Timofeev spent many hours in Russian museums studying the enamel work of Carl Fabergé, Pavel Ovchinnikov and other Russian masters. In November 1992, Timofeev was one of three artists invited to exhibit his plique à jour work in Moscow, at an event celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Fabergé firm.

Other artists you will meet at the Washington Craft Show whose work pays tribute to the past include:

·         Cliff Lee (b. 1951), a ceramic artist who makes his home in Stevens, PA. Lee gave up a promising career as a neurosurgeon at the age of 27, when he went on sabbatical and studied ceramics at James Madison University, eventually earning his MFA.  Influenced by his work as a surgeon, his pottery mimics natural forms, including flowers, gourds, leaves and other natural shapes. Through 17 years of research, Lee taught himself how to reproduce a glaze called Imperial Yellow, whose secret had been lost for centuries.  His work is now found in museums around the country as well as in the White House Collection of Arts and Crafts, and he sells his glazes to potters in China.
“Prickly Pear Vases with Imperial Yellow Glaze” show Cliff Lee’s skill as a surgeon (the small “pricklies” are applied byhand 
one at a time), and his success in re-engineering the Imperial Yellow glaze, the formula for which had been lost for centuries.
Dimensions: 14” H X 6”W X 6” D Price: $4,500.00 One Of A Kind
Image courtesy of the artist

·         Mary Jackson (b. 1945), a basket maker who lives and works in Charleston, SC. Jackson weaves sweetgrass baskets, following a tradition that was passed down to her from her ancestors. This tradition originated in West Africa, and was brought to this country by slaves.  Her baskets are represented in many collections including the American Craft Museum, White House Collection of Arts and Crafts, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and others. She was recognized in 2008 as one of 25 MacArthur Fellows, and received a “Genius Grant” -  a fellowship given to creative individuals distinguished by their efforts to push the boundaries of their respective fields.
“Oval Vessel with Sweetgrass Spray” by Mary Jackson, made of hand-coiled seagrasses collected 
along the South Carolina coast, including sweetgrass, bulrush, palmetto, and pineneedles.
Dimensions: 6” H X 18” W X 14” D  Price: $1,100.00. One Of A Kin
Image courtesy of the artist

These are but a few of the gifted artists who will exhibit their work at the 23rd annual Washington Craft Show November 19-21 at the Washington Convention Center.  In all, 190 artists will be on hand, all eager to meet new people and talk about their work.

WEEKEND SPEAKER SERIES (Included with admission)FRIDAY
1:00pm: Kelly Conway, Curator of Glass, Chrysler Museum of Art. Panel Discussion.
3:00pm: Fiber artist Libby Mijanovich.
1:00pm: Bob Devers, Coordinator, Corcoran School of Arts Ceramics Department. Panel Discussion.
3:00pm: Ceramist Nancy Kubale.
1:00pm: Shana Kroiz, Maryland Institute College of Art Jewelry Center, Workshop and S

November 19, 20 & 21
Washington Convention Center
801 Mount Vernon Place NW
Washington, DC.
(202) 249-3000

TICKET INFORMATION:General Admission:  $15.00 / Senior Citizens: $13.00 / Students: $8.00 / Under 12 FREE
$10 for groups of 10 or more with advance purchase.

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