By Gina Malone
The Gallery at Flat Rock, a stop along the Blue Ridge Craft Trails, will celebrate its craft artists with a day of demonstrations on Saturday, July 10. The four participating artists, working in the mediums of clay, textiles, wood and jewelry, will demonstrate from 1–4 p.m. and will offer additional pieces for sale.
“I’ll be sculpting some of my animal bell chimes and small figurines,” says ceramic artist Jean Greeson. “I’ll show how I work with reference materials, paper, clay and tools to create the first step of my pieces, and also have an example of all the different steps that go into finishing a sculpture beginning to end.” Greeson welcomes the chance to interact with visitors. “I think meeting the artist gives one a deeper appreciation and understanding of a piece, the life experience, passions, humor and skills that made the little critter be ‘born’,” she says.
Janice Schmidt of Goddess Rags plans to bring some hand stitching in order to demonstrate decorative mending. Schmidt creates clothing from bright and beautiful Indian Kantha fabrics. “My primary way of selling my work has been through direct contact with my customers,” says Schmidt. “I find they love to talk to the artist and engage in how the work was made and who made it.”
Woodworker Chuck Backer brings more than 60 years of experience working with wood to his demonstration of techniques for turning pens, kitchen tools and pendants. “Craftsmanship is diminishing as more and more computers are replacing it,” says Backer. “Events like this remind people that art forms still exist, give a platform for craftsmanship and, hopefully, will remind people to explore their own creativity.”
When Christine Stanley sold the bookshop in Beaufort, SC that she owned for 27 years, she tapped into her art and design education to begin jewelry making. “People tell me it would drive them nuts working with tiny seed beads,” says Stanley. “For some reason, I love it.” She’ll be sharing the process she uses to create her embroidered jewelry. “I think many people are really enjoying the freedom we have after a year filled with more solitude and fear than we are used to,” she says.
The Gallery at Flat Rock is located at Flat Rock Square at 2702-A Greenville Highway, Flat Rock. Regular gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; or by appointment. To learn more, visit GalleryFlatRock.com or call 828.698.7000.