April 10 2019

SAVE THE DATE FOR A SHOWCASE OF CONTEMPORARY CRAFT AND DESIGN

Friday, November 8 – Sunday, November 10, 2019

Gala Preview Party – Thursday November 7, 2019

 

When it comes to the art of fine craft and design, did you know Philadelphia is the place to be? In the heart of Center City in the middle of autumn is one of the most highly regarded events of its type in the country, the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show. Celebrating its 43rd year this November, The Craft Show is held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and is a sight to be seen. With over a dozen categories ranging from ceramics to jewelry to furniture to fiber, 195 juried exhibitors will descend upon the city, bringing their fine contemporary craft, ready for all to see, experience, and purchase.

Paz Sintes Textile Jewelry

The three-day Craft Show is not only a feast for the eyes, it’s also the biggest single fundraiser of the year for the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Presented by The Women’s Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the event has raised over $13 million dollars in its 42-year history. Proceeds from ticket sales help to purchase works of art and craft for the permanent collection of the museum. This has allowed the museum to acquire more contemporary craft, thus broadening the reach of this important category of art. In addition, proceeds from the Show have helped fund education and publication projects, state-of-the-art equipment, and special exhibitions.

For nearly 20 years, the Show has featured a guest artist program from countries around the world including Japan, England, Ireland, Germany, Finland, Canada, Korea, Scotland and Lithuania. This year, the Craft Show is honored to welcome over two-dozen craft artists from Israel. The Show has something for everyone, from finding unique treasures for yourself to one-of-a-kind gifts for others. Beyond the aisles of the main show floor, guests will experience events including artist demonstrations, Meet and Greet tours with artists, student exhibitions, and a fashion show of clothing, jewelry and accessories from the Show floor.

Dana Bechert Ceramics

Save the date to be inspired by museum quality contemporary craft and design. Whether you’re a fine craft aficionado or new to the genre, we invite you to explore the 2019 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show, where there is more than meets the eye.

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Image 1: James Pearce
Image 2: Paz Sintes
Image 3: Dana Bechert

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The 2019 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show artists will be announced on July 1st, 2019.

Still want to apply to the show? The official application deadline has passed, but click here for an extended deadline. Last minute applications will be accepted through midnight on April 15th 2019.

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October 24 2014

Newstat, who holds a degree in industrial technology from Illinois State University, has nurtured an interest in woodcraft since shop class at age 12. After a brief stint as a teacher, he has been making furniture since 1987. Today, his studio is located in Chicago. Click here to read more from an article about Newstat’s 2013 Craft Show win of the Wharton Esherick Museum Prize for Excellence in Wood. Follow the artist on Facebook and browse his website to see updates on his work.

What first interested you in working in your medium?
I started working with wood in 7th grade in an industrial arts class. We were given a block of Honduras mahogany to turn on the lathe--luckily Honduras mahogany works easily. Had we been given a difficult type of wood to work, things could have turned out much differently. I was hooked immediately, so much so that my dad bought me a lathe and together, we started buying wood from around world. We'd take an occasional Saturday morning trip to Craftsman Wood Service on the south side? of Chicago where they had barrels filled with blocks of exotic hardwoods, sold by the pound. I was fascinated with how many of the types of wood had deep, rich colors and intense smells--far more intense than any domestic hardwoods. That feeling has never gone away. So really, my woodworking career started in about 1970.

What is special about the medium you work with? How does it inform the work you create? 
I'm fascinated with the intricate grain patterns and shapes of each board. I've always had trouble describing my process--how a lot of the time a specific piece of wood can dictate the direction a piece of furniture takes. The wood doesn't necessarily "speak" to me, but it often points me in the right direction. One of my clients once said, "I love how you take what you're given in a piece of wood and guide it to an interesting place." She described it way better than I could.

What do you love about your workspace? 
My studio is about 700 square feet, a small space. It's probably impractical in a lot of ways. It's behind my house and I built an addition onto it and the front doors, trying to recreate an agricultural work building.

I love to work outside--I have a bench I can roll outside and I'll do that until it's around 50 degrees. The plants and trees have matured and are almost wild, which I like. In the fall it's fantastic. Inside, the area around my bench is separated from the rest of the studio with a lower ceiling, so my music playlist sounds spectacular and I'm sort of cocooned in a little space.  I have interesting boards lined up along the wall that I like to look at while working at my bench, developing ideas of pieces I'll make from them.

I've had a fantasy for a long time of converting a building in the country into a studio space. I'd slide open the big door in the morning with long views of meadows and forest in the distance. I'd play music as loud as I'd want to and make plenty of noise, with room to spread out and work
outside. Someday.

What was your inspiration for a recent piece?
My work has gradually evolved from functional/technical to functional/sculptural. I made a series of asymmetric tables that were completely inspired by the specific pieces of wood I used for the tops. I wanted them to be flamboyant, make a statement and grab attention. Then, I made a follow-up piece but completely symmetrical, still letting the wood determine the design.  Two different points of view, but what is becoming more and more clear to me is that the exact and specific pieces of wood typically are the inspiration behind my pieces.

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P.O. Box 7646
Philadelphia, PA 19101-7646
Phone: (215) 684-7930
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