An exhibition of glass and an evening highlighting local textile artists and business owners that excel in their fields are among the events on the calendar this month for The Gallery at Flat Rock. Artist Table: Heirloom will be held at the gallery on Wednesday, October 3, at 6 p.m. Featured guest artists will be The Oriole Mill’s founder, designer Bethanne Knudson, and clothing designer Libby O’Bryan, creative director for Rite of Passage, a new clothing line that uses fabrics designed by Knudson. “The theme of the evening, Heirloom, represents the passion and drive for quality over trends of typical manufacturing,” says gallery owner Suzanne Camarata Ball.
Knudson received degrees in fiber and textiles and, in 2000, she founded The Jacquard Center for Jacquard Studies, providing access to weaving on Jacquard-controlled industrial power looms. “This brought designers and artists from throughout North America and Europe to work and study at the Center,” she says. In 2004, she began working with Stephan Michelson to build a textile mill. The result is The Oriole Mill, a 72,000-square-foot boutique mill that produces its own line of high-end fabrics and finished products for home and body.
O’Bryan’s company, SewCo, housed in The Oriole Mill, weaves natural fibers into quality Jacquard textiles. “The culminating artifacts are a convergence of craft, design and manufacturing embodied through the traditions and rituals performed by the wearer,” O’Bryan says. Her Rite of Passage collection highlights the elegance and sophistication of American-made textiles. The company was founded in 2010 as a socially responsible manufacturer providing living wages to workers. “We believe the way to compete with overseas production is through exquisite craftsmanship,” O’Bryan says.
Budy Finch Catering & Revelry and Crate Wine Market & Project will be on hand to provide high-quality food and drinks for the events. Tickets are $85.
An opening reception will be held on Thursday, October 18, from 5–7 p.m. for Meaning and Object: Life in Glass, an exhibition of the work of Alison Chism, who will give an artist talk on Thursday, October 25, at 5:30 p.m. The show runs through Sunday, October 28. Both events are free and open to the public.
The Gallery at Flat Rock is located at Flat Rock Square at 2702-A Greenville Highway in 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.