December 30, 2010

Mixed-media artist, Jenine Bressner—recently featured on The Martha Stewart Show—will be in Houston for her first solo show, a special workshop, and other events in January

Sample image of Bressner’s glass-bead and textile work.
Photo courtesy the artist.

Mixed-media artist, Jenine Bressner, will debut her first solo show, Inverted Harmony: A handmade Environment by Jenine Bressner, at HCCC this January in the small gallery. The exhibition will open on Friday, January 21, 2011, from 5:30-8:00 p.m. On Saturday, January 22, Jenine will teach a workshop from 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.: Ruffled Accessories: Beards, Boutonnieres, and Headbands.  HCCC is partnering with Sew Crafty Houston to present this special workshop.

We will be posting more about Sew Crafty Houston and Jenine Bressner later in January, but for now, we thought everyone might enjoy a sneak peak about Jenine and her recent spot on The Martha Stewart Show. You can see a full clip of Jenine and Martha here.  And, read more about Jenine’s experience on her blog here.

Space at the workshop is limited, so if you want to join Jenine in Houston, and learn to make some fun and wacky accessories to spice up your wardrobe, sign up now!

Jenine will also give a gallery talk on the evening of Saturday, January 22, at 8:15 pm.  This will immediately follow the reception and screening of Handmade Nation, a documentary about the new wave of art, craft and design, at Lawndale Art Center.  Read more about these events here. 

December 23, 2010

Happy Holidays from HCCC!

Happy Holidays from Pancho the Reindog and everyone at HCCC!

We want to wish everyone a wonderful holiday break and happy new year from the HCCC “birthday blog.” Thank you to all of our supporters for making this a great year!

If you haven’t been by HCCC to see the most recent exhibitions, Craft Texas 2010 and The Color of Enamel: New Work by Leighelena, you still have time. Craft Texas 2010 is open through Thursday, December 30, and Leighelena is open through January 30. So, please stop by with your friends and family—admission is always free!  (Please note that HCCC will be closed December 25-27 and December 31- January 3 for the holidays.)

If you have never joined HCCC as a member or even if you have, now is a great time of year to join or renew your membership.

Your gifts of $100, the price of a Crafter level membership for two, are being matched – dollar for dollar – by the Windgate Charitable Foundation. Click here to donate now and celebrate ten years of free exhibitions, education programs, and the next decade of HCCC.

December 17, 2010

What is your Craft Texas 2010 Favorite?

With the exhibition Craft Texas 2010 closing at the end of the month, we thought it would be fun for staff to share their favorite pieces from the juried show. Surprisingly, no two staff members chose the same work! If you haven’t had time to see the exhibition, it’s not too late. The show is up through Thursday, December 30, 2010. Please note we will be closed December 25-27. If you’ve visited the exhibition, please share your favorites in the comments below!

From left to right, Catherine Winkler Rayroud’s paper cutting Mama Never Told Me,
Emily Black’s deer head sculpture A Woman’s Place is in the Home and  Gabriel Craig &
Amy Weiks brooch Four Legged Leaders in the wall frame. Photo by Jack Zilker.

Facilities and Operations Manager, Randall Dorn, likes Leslie Lewis’s Arachne because it is a personal reminder of two of his favorite things: spiders and his wife, Amber.

Julie Farr, Executive Director, chose Catherine Winkler Rayroud’s piece, Mama Never Told Me, because of the intersection between a very traditional craft practice of paper cutting and the contemporary commentary on how women are educated in our society.

The richly colored Crop Wing by Kurt Dyrhaug is the favorite for Asher Sales Associate and Gallery Attendant, Bianca Gutierrez. She is drawn to how the work seems to be a much smaller version of something that should be larger than life.

Selecting a statement piece of jewelry, Communications Director, Mary Headrick, chose Robly A. Glover’s Bobber Necklace #3 as her favorite work in the show. The work jumped out at her right away because of its bold colors, interesting use of materials, and fun shape the necklace takes.

From left to right, Danny Kamerath’s wooden cabinet Shafer,  Roger Deatherage’s Library
and Brazos Dining Chair,  and Kurt Dyrhaug’s Crop Wing. Photo by Jack Zilker.

Education Director, Carol Klahn, selected Gale Gibb’s Matchbook Collection as her favorite work. She likes the depth and unity in the piece from afar and the unexpected surprise of multiple items when you get closer. It is a piece you can continue to look at and never tire of.

The beautiful and functional Library Chair and Brazos Dining Chair by Roger Deatherage are favorites for Marina Lewis, Volunteer Coordinator, who explains how all she wants to do is sit in them.

Donna Muniz, Finance Manager, described how Shafer by Danny Kamerath was her favorite because of the intricacy in how each of the drawers fits together, the wonderful selection of wood choices and how the piece perfectly soaks up the light in the area in which it is displayed.

Harlan Butt’s two pieces, Weminuche Horizon #1 and Texas Horizon Oak #1, are favorites for Gallery Attendant, Ashley Powell. She is blown away by the high-quality enamel depicting nature on the sides of the vessels and the intense labor behind the process.

On the left, Caprice Pierucci’s wooden sculpture, Convergence and through the doorway
Marianne McGrath’s ceramic installation piece, Yours, Mine & Ours… Photo by Jack Zilker.

Suzanne Sippel, Asher Gallery Manager, selected Four Legged Leaders by Gabriel Craig and Amy Weiks. She likes the combination of repurposed materials, including coins and metal. The piece displays a high level of skill behind bringing these materials together.

After helping artist Marianne McGrath install her piece, Yours, Mine & Ours…, Curatorial Fellow, Anna Walker, has selected it as her favorite. She likes how the artist piles together numerous, small and delicate ceramic pods to form an impressive structure that towers above viewers’ heads.

Web and Marketing Assistant, Jenny Lynn Weitz, loves the honesty and evidence of the artist’s workmanship in Caprice Pierucci’s work Convergence. Although the work is very large and durable, it appears delicate. Jenny Lynn describes how every time she sees the piece she wants to jump through the opening.

Nyala Wright, Associate Director of Fundraising, is drawn to Emily Black’s piece, A Woman’s Place is in the Home, because it challenges traditional notions of fascism and matriarchy.

December 10, 2010

Current Artist-in-Residence Jessica Dupuis Reflects on a Four-Week Residency at Women’s Studio Workshop

The Women’s Studio Workshop (WSW) in Rosendale, NY, is a visual arts organization with specialized studios in printmaking, hand papermaking, ceramics, letterpress printing, photography and book arts. Jessica Dupuis was invited to work at WSW as part of their Fellowship Program.  Jessica is a ceramist and current artist-in-residence at HCCC. We asked her to provide a few pictures of her time up North and reflect on her experience.

Women's Studio Workshop. Rosendale, NY.

Four weeks at WSW…. a community that was warm, nurturing, and stimulated my creativity. WSW gave me the opportunity to discover what it was like to live and work in the same building, the time to focus on my work, and to interact with other women artists.  I spent my days downstairs in the ceramic studio, and above, I could hear the traffic in the printmaking studio. I had potluck lunches in the kitchen with everyone and spent evenings chatting with my room mate, Amber Jensen, a printmaker, or doing research for my work. I found this experience beneficial to the work and residency I am currently completing at HCCC.

Inside Women's Studio Workshop. Rosendale, NY

 Detail of Jessica's work in progress while at WSW.

December 2, 2010

From the Artist: Leigh Navarro Introduces Her Show in the Artist Hall, "The Color of Enamel: New Work by Leighelena"

Leigh Navarro is an enamel artist from Austin, TX, and her first solo show opens this weekend in the Artist Hall. The exhibition, The Color of Enamel: New Work by Leighelena, runs from Dec. 4, 2010 to Jan. 30, 2011, and an opening reception will be held on Thursday, Dec. 9, from 5:30-8:00 PM.

Leigh in her studio.

I am thrilled to be introducing my work at HCCC. Together, my mom, Susan, and I have nearly 60 years of enameling experience. Some years were more "fruitful" than others, but it has been in the forefront or back burner of our lives for years.  My mom is an artist and started enameling to incorporate different elements on her wall hangings. Eventually, she made fully enameled wall hangings.  Since I was a kid, I enjoyed making jewelry, which I sold at art fairs with my mom. Decades later, we have taken our combined knowledge to create wearable, affordable, and fantastic enamel jewelry!

Leighelena, Small Anemone Wall Piece, glass enamel, copper, stee. Photo by HCCC.

The pieces we have created for this exhibition are a good mix of what is to come and what have been some of our favorite pieces to make over the years. We always want to find interesting vehicles for different types of enamel. I am excited to introduce the Anemone collection. These sculptures are a collaboration among myself, my mom and my partner, Jimmy Sochat.  I can't wait to expand on it in 2011—I have many ideas already!  

Leighelena, Medium Anemone Wall Piece,
and materials are: glass enamel, copper, steel.
Photo by HCCC.

The framed enamel artwork, or Driftwood series, is also the beginning of a new series I will be producing.  And the jewelry, ah the jewelry, I have put many great pieces together, some new and some best-sellers.  Please take special notice of the leather cuff bracelets, they are my favorite pieces and the most fun to make.  I wanted to create a great way to make a bracelet with an attractive piece of enamel.  I have developed this look over the last 4 years, and, believe me, it has changed drastically!  I take a lot of time and thought in choosing the best and most exciting Italian leathers that I can find to create each look.  The end result is an edgy but feminine handcrafted piece of jewelry that will stand the test of time, both mechanically and fashionably. 

Each of these pieces is fully designed and crafted by me, in collaboration with my mom, Susan. I hope you love them as much as we do!  I look forward to meeting you on Thursday, Dec 9th for the opening!