September brings the start of fall and the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea opens the season with demonstrations by four Kentucky jewelers whose works are regularly featured at the center.
BeSpoken Design artists Diane Smith Thomas and James Rich will demonstrate their colorful polymer clay jewelry on Saturday, Sept. 3, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the center.
With design and color as his forte, Rich translates his drawings and pen and ink studies into colorful polymer clay. Using a variety of colors, he constructs intricate polymer clay “canes”. A “cane” is a rod made up of two or more colors, layered to make a pattern that when cut in a cross-section, reveals a design.
Smith Thomas, a Berea College graduate, takes the constructed polymer clay “cane” designs made by Rich, and creates unique jewelry and wearable art. She takes sliced sections of the polymer clay and folds, cuts and joins them, to create necklace pendants, earrings and pins.
“My designs are built upon my lifelong love and collection of jewelry,” said Thomas. “I am intrigued by repeating patterns and multiple part forms.”
On Saturday, Sept. 10, Teresa Kibby will demonstrate her colorful anodized aluminum jewelry ‘Critters’ from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Center.
Kibby has always drawn animals, and her renderings are whimsical and abstract. Discovering that her drawings were easy to translate into jewelry, Kibby’s own pets, a yellow-collared dwarf macaw parrot and her dog, became subjects in her jewelry. Kibby also adds beads and found objects to her cut-out metal “critters” for embellishment and fun.
On Saturday, Sept. 10, the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea will offer visitors free guided tours through the center’s gallery exhibit, “Great Impressions: Prints by Kentucky Artisans” and the lobby exhibits, “Kentucky Clay: A Continuing Tradition” and “Reveal: Monica Pipia.”
These free, guided exhibit tours will be led by Kentucky Artisan Center staff who will talk about the exhibits, the artists and individual works. Staff will answer questions about the techniques and various processes used and the objects featured. Tours will be given at 11 a.m. and again at 2 p.m.
On Saturday, Sept. 17, Ron McWhorter, Will Bondurant and Gene Barnes, all members of the Berea Welcome Center Carvers, will demonstrate a variety of woodcarving styles and techniques from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea.
Members of the Berea Welcome Center Carvers live in many communities in central Kentucky, and their activities include carving classes, carving demonstrations at schools, monthly Kentucky Artisan Center demonstrations and special events.
On Saturday, Sept. 24, Sharon Major, of Frog Hollow Creations, will demonstrate the textural metal jewelry techniques of repousse´ and chasing from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the center.
Repousse´ is a French word for a metalworking technique in which a malleable metal is embellished or shaped by hammering from the reverse side to create a raised design in low relief.
Chasing is the opposite of repousse´ – where the metal is pushed from the front side downwards to define the design with depth. The noun "chase" refers to a groove, furrow, channel or indentation.
The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is located just off Interstate 75 at Exit 77. The center’s exhibit, shopping and travel information areas are open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the cafe is open from 9:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.
The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea currently features works by more than 750 artisans from more than 100 counties across the Commonwealth. Special exhibits on display include “Great Impressions: Prints by Kentucky Artisans,” through Sept. 10, 2016; "Have a Seat: Chairs by Kentucky Artisans" Sept. 17, 2016 through Feb. 25, 2017; and in the lobby, “Kentucky Clay: A Continuing Tradition,” and ”Reveal: Monica Pipia.” For more information about events call 859-985-5448, or visit the center’s website or Facebook page.
The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is an agency in the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.