IN THEIR GYPSY WAGON BOOKMOBILE

We have been making artist's books for over 30 years together. Long ago as craftspeople at Renaissance faires we fell in love with the "gypsy wagons" that vendors built to sleep in and sell their wares from. This gypsy wagon is taking us around the country to sell our books, teach book arts workshops, talk about books and see the beauty in the USA.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Folk School life in North Carolina




We've spent the week at the John C. Campbell Folk School in the Appalachian Mountains, teaching a book arts workshop. 
We did a pretty good job of not overworking (ie: staying up past 10 pm in the studio every night) and still taught a lot of different structures, had lofty book arts conversations and watched our students create intricate and quirky books. 


I love this ultra-creative working table.
Lots of cool books
One student, Betty, used pictures of the folk school in her creation, which included a possum. I haven't seen any possums here, but this town, Brasstown, is known for its New Year's eve "possum drop", which they tell me "does not abuse the possum in any way, in fact, it keeps him from being run over for another night."

This is Peter playing music with the locals at the "Possum Pit" in downtown Brasstown.
People here are so lucky to have a resource like the folk school nearby. They invite artists and craftspeople to teach week-long classes in beautiful studios in this peaceful rural setting year-round. A major focus of the campus is "non-competitive education", which makes for a joyful camaraderie to develop in the classes and in the dining hall. They also believe in the unifying power of music. We sang folk songs in the morning, heard a free concert last night by a fantastic New England fiddler, Lissa Schneckenburger and contra-danced on Wed. night.

Look at the other crafts people did during the week:
Sweetgrass baskets

Banjars

wood turning: hollow vessels

We'll be here another week, where we will hopefully have more sunshine. It rained most days last week. Peter will teach a ukulele class and I (Donna) will learn some jewelry making!

2 comments:

Kirse said...

HIya Peter and Donna - sounds great! i hope you had a great birthday Donna. The weather here has been awesome - got into the 80s this week, and I got sunburned on the Wednesday of the same week it flooded downtown CApitola. I took the last part of the week off to get ahead of home chores and its been nice. It clouded over and cooled off this weekend - I gardened all day today, made fancy spearmint simple syrup drinks and parsely roasted walnut lemon pesto from the garden for dinner, and then walked to the beach to watch the sunset. Enjoy your second week at the folk school. It seems great!

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