Penland School of Crafts 28th Annual Benefit Auction
August 9 - 10, 2013
Here's the next in our ongoing series of Penland Benefit Auction
newsletters, featuring artists whose work will be a part of this year's auction. We have invited trustees, staff members, collectors, and friends to write about pieces that will be included in the summer 2013 benefit event, the artists who created them, and the experience of living with the work they have purchased in past auctions.
And now, a few words from C. James Meyer, Professor Emeritus from Virginia Commonwealth University, about auction artist Caroline Gore...
Photograph by Mary Whalen
"The early 20th century concept of jewelry in western cultures generally consisted of objects made from traditional materials... precious and semi-precious metals and gemstones with enamel utilized on occasion. Fifty years ago, in the US in particular (due in part to our less cumbersome hallmarking laws), jeweler's attitudes began to change. This shift in attitude, combined with new materials and technologies, began to open up a new aesthetic. Jewelry began appearing that was made from base metals such as titanium, aluminum and pewter. It utilized acrylic plastic, cast resin, electroformed metal, rubber, paper, wood, found objects and... most anything the artist wished to employ. Jewelry could reflect social comment. It could question concepts of preciousness. It could reflect the wearer's values.
"The work of Caroline Gore is a product of this change in attitude. She has a wonderful ability to combine diverse materials into an object which still contains that individual perspective or "thumbprint" of the artist. To me, this is a very difficult thing to accomplish. One can establish formal relationships between materials in a design sense, paying attention to color, mass, form, etc., but in doing so the work often becomes anonymous. It loses the sense of individual creation.
...harnessing...; oxidized sterling silver, jet, black spinel, hematite, borosilicate glass, silk,
5 1/2 x 2 x 1/2 inches
"In ...harnessing..., the brooch that is a part of this year's annual benefit auction, Caroline brings together sterling silver, jet, black spinel, hematite, glass, and silk into a piece having a harmony of color and form. It is the traditional circle pin reframed. It conjures up weight, both physical and emotional, through the forms of the slumped glass. The hematite and spinel are reflective and light, while the coloration is monochromatic and dark.
"I curated the 2006 exhibition Glass-Wear held at Craft Alliance in St. Louis, Missouri, in which Caroline was a participant. In the catalog Caroline wrote about her then-new series entitled The Weights: Balance Series, which started to utilize glass in these drooping forms, "I turn contemplative moments into tangible forms that take on a part of my experience and life process... (this series) attempts to address and give form to residual traces of emotive and environmental impacts on the physical body."
"I have been fortunate to watch Caroline as she moved from undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University, through graduate school at East Carolina University and to professional artist/educator in her current position as Assistant Professor at Western Michigan University. Professional recognition of her work has come through public collections, solo and invitational exhibitions, publications, and residencies, and through lectures and workshops. In addition to making jewelry Caroline employs photography and installation as part of her creative activity."
You can click here to visit Caroline Gore's website, where you can see more of her work.
And a few words about auction artist Brian Reid, from recent Penland core fellow Jack Mauch...
"In his work as a maker, designer and educator, Brian David Reid is up for just about anything.
"As a furniture designer, Brian allows himself to be influenced by art and decorative objects from virtually every culture and era in the history of human civilization, often combining these influences in a single piece. Imagine ancient Egyptian stool meets Shaker hope chest with a splash of 1960s mod psychedelic. Sounds pretty nuts, right? Yet Brian possesses the unique ability to filter and synthesize such wildly disparate sources into a coherent expression of his own personal aesthetic. He creates furniture that is at once original and comfortingly connected to the history of the decorative arts.
Brian Reid's piece in the 2013 benefit auction:
Sans Birdseye; wood, 12 x 12 x 34 inches
"In the woodshop, Brian easily oscillates between traditional and innovative technique. He may spend the morning utilizing his finely tuned hand-skills to create meticulous marquetry panels and piercings, but in the afternoon you'll find him inventing a jig to cut 98 three-way miters in less than an hour. Rest assured that if there is a faster, simpler and more clever way, Brian will discover it.
"It is, however, as a perennial educator that Brian is truly brilliant. Yes, he can demonstrate technique in a manner that is concise, clear and engaging; and his expansive knowledge of design history adds valuable context to all his lessons, but it is his pure and unabashed enthusiasm for the creative process that allows Brian to inspire students of absolutely every age and background. In the 15 classes I took as a core fellow at Penland, I did not encounter another instructor who could so easily engage every single student with equal interest and dedication.
"Brian is never shy to engage his students intellectually or philosophically, but I believe he is interested in challenging himself as much as them, which is a rare and precious attribute for any instructor. Because of his candor, humor and generosity Brian has, for myself and others, transcended the role of teacher to that of mentor.
"So come to the auction, bid on these tables, and support Penland as a place that fosters such talented makers and dedicated educators as Brian David Reid!"
You can click here to visit Brian Reid's website, where you can see more of his work.
Auction Weekend Tickets $375
Includes all Friday and Saturday activities
Friday, August 9
Friday-only tickets $200
Cocktail party, exhibition preview and silent auction, dinner, live auction, dessert party, live music, and dancing
Saturday, August 10
Saturday-only tickets $250
Coffee at the studios with Penland's resident artists, silent auction, lunch, live auction, and a reception at the Penland Gallery
Absentee bids are accepted with a $25 bidder fee.
You can click here
for complete information about absentee bidding.
Invitations will be mailed in June. For more information, email
The Penland School of Crafts Annual Benefit Auction is a gala weekend in the North Carolina mountains featuring the sale of more than 240 works in books, clay, drawing, glass, iron, letterpress, metals, painting, photography, printmaking, textiles, and wood. The Penland auction is one of the most important craft collecting events in the Southeast and a perfect opportunity to support Penland's educational programs, which have helped thousands of people live creative lives.
All proceeds benefit Penland School of Crafts. Penland School is located 52 miles northeast of Asheville, NC.
Support for Penland
Art for Penland
Penland School of Crafts is an international center for craft education dedicated to helping people live creative lives. Located in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains, Penland offers workshops, artist residencies, a gallery, and community collaboration programs. Penland School is a nonprofit, tax-exempt institution that receives support for its programs from the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency funded by the State of North Carolina and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.