Southern Highland Craft Guild Offers Arts Education at the Folk Art Center in Asheville, NC – Apr. 1, 2017

Makers of the Southern Highland Craft Guild are preparing for the launch of their 2017 special event programming at the Folk Art Center in Asheville, NC, with the second annual Glass and Metal Day. On Saturday, Apr. 1, 2017, nearly fifteen Guild members will showcase their skills and techniques of glass and metal in the auditorium of the Center. From 10am to 4pm, these masters will be blacksmithing, glass blowing, piercing and soldering metals, knife making, bezeling, repoussé, copper etching, assembling stained glass, forging and many other manipulation processes. As a non-profit organization, the Guild provides experiential learning opportunities for the public to cultivate awareness of both handmade and craft.


Michael Hatch in his furnace in Weaverville working on a vase. Photo by Sarah Carballo.

Long-time member Blenko Glass Company will be participating this year with special appearance of Walter Blenko himself, current President of the company. The founder’s grandson will be located in the Folk Art Center’s lobby at the entrance of the auditorium to sign pieces made from Blenko. Patrons and customers are invited to bring their pieces from home to have him etch the glass from 10-4pm. Located in Milton, West Virginia, Blenko Glass Company has been in business since 1893.

Member Ruthie Cohen will be one of several jewelers working with precious metals as she bezels and forges them into fine adornments. Cohen is an advocate of craft education as teaches at her Mountain Metalsmiths School of Jewelry & Lapidary in Arden.


Jewelry by Erica Stankwych Bailey. She uses various techniques to forge unique collections for all.

Visitors will have the opportunity to watch and learn more about two of the original craft media. Glassblower Michael Hatch of Crucible Glassworks will be using a small kiln to exhibit the quick thought process of blown glass. While Laurie Young and Christian Arnold of Australian Art Glass will demonstrate fusing and torching glass into ornate, decorative pieces.

The Guild’s education series of events are a significant channel that members use to explain their creative process. Providing craft consumers with knowledge and the story behind their investment is an equally important part of the Guild’s mission to the buying public.

For a complete list of artists participating in Glass & Metal Day, and to learn more about Southern Highland Craft Guild programs at the Folk Art Center call 828/298-7928 or visit (www.craftguild.org).

Admission to Glass & Metal Day and the Folk Art Center is free. The Folk Art Center is located at Milepost 382 on the Blue Ridge Parkway in east Asheville. Headquarters to the Southern Highland Craft Guild, the Center also houses three galleries, a library, a craft shop and a Blue Ridge Parkway information desk and bookstore.

The Southern Highland Craft Guild is a non-profit, educational organization established in 1930 to cultivate the crafts and makers of the Southern Highlands for the purpose of shared resources, education, marketing and conservation. The Southern Highland Craft Guild is an authorized concessioner of the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. The Folk Art Center is located at Milepost 382 of the Blue Ridge Parkway, just north of the Highway 70 entrance in east Asheville, NC.

Glass & Metal Day 2017, demonstrating artists include:

Erica Bailey, jewelry
Amy Brandenburg, jewelry
Ruthie Cohen & David Alberts, jewelry
Rachelle Davis, jewelry
Michael Hatch, glass blowing
Cecile Keith, metalsmithing
Greg Magruder, stained glass
Jay Pfeil, copper etching
Lyle Wheeler, blacksmithing
Christian Arnold, blown glass
Laurie Young, blown glass
Cheryl Stippich, stained glass
Blenko Glass, glass signing

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