Feature Articles

September 2013

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, Will Focus on Craft & Design at Black Mountain College

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center in Asheville, NC, will present Shaping Craft + Design at Black Mountain College, on view from Sept. 6 through Jan. 4, 2014.

The exhibition will focus on craft and design at Black Mountain College. This thematic focus will be achieved through an annual conference, now in its 5th year, along with an exhibition, catalogue and related educational programming. Shaping Craft + Design at Black Mountain College is designed to inspire new ways of thinking about the role and impact of Black Mountain College on developing craft and design movements in America and internationally. The conference, to be held Oct. 11-13, 2013 coincides with American Craft Week.

The exhibition will include ceramics, textiles, furniture, printed material, sculpture, paintings and ephemera created by students and faculty during and after Black Mountain College, the short-lived, legendary college in existence from 1933-1957. Highlights of the exhibition include works by Josef Albers, Karen Karnes, Shoji Hamada, Peter Voulkos, Walter Gropius & Marcel Breuer, Ruth Asawa, and many more.

The show will be accompanied by a catalogue, featuring full-color images of a selection of the works on display. The exhibition is expected to travel to several additional venues around the country, including Winthrop University and the Mary Elizabeth Dee Shaw Gallery at Weber State University, UT.

The annual ReVIEWING Black Mountain College conference will take place Oct. 11-13, 2013 at the Reuter Center/ Osher Lifelong Learning Center on the UNC Asheville campus in Asheville. The three-day program is open to the public and will include a full schedule of speakers and panels featuring Keynote Speaker Christopher Benfey, PhD., distinguished historian, author of many books including Red Brick, Black Mountain, White Clay, and great nephew of Josef and Anni Albers.

Jenni Sorkin, Conference Featured Speaker, is Assistant Professor of Contemporary Art History, University of California, Santa Barbara. She is currently completing a book manuscript, titled Live Form: Craft as Participation, which examines the confluence of gender, artistic labor, and the history of post-war ceramics from 1945 to 1975.

Ulrich Schwarz, Conference Featured Speaker, is Professor of Visual Communication and Vice Dean at University of the Arts Berlin and a Managing Partner of Bertron Schwarz Frey, a design firm focused on Museography, Exhibition Design and Information Design. He is the author of publications such as Space, Time, Characters and Museography and Exhibition Design as well as contributions to Information Graphics and Information Design Source Book. 

Other conference presentations will come from a Call for Proposals that has garnered submissions from the United States and Europe.

The conference fee is $70 and includes an annual membership to the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center. It is open to the public.

The project will also include a comprehensive schedule of educational programming designed to broaden the public’s understanding and engagement with Black Mountain College’s legacy and the role of craft and design in America. The schedule will include: (1) a lecture by Ellen Lupton on Oct. 24, 2013, hosted at BMCM+AC and co-sponsored by the Western Carolina University (WCU) Design Development Foundation (DDF) as a part of the “Ideas Without Walls/In Between Spaces” series; (2) a hands-on, experiential folded paper workshop facilitated by WCU Professor Matt Liddle, at BMCM+AC; and (3) a film screening and discussion of “”Bauhaus in America,” moderated by Board Chair and Professor Brian Butler at BMCM+AC.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call 828-350-8484 or visit (www.blackmountaincollege.org).

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