Author: Tammy W. Leighton

Craft

Stunning Tiffany Stained Glass Debuts After 100 Years of Obscurity

For nearly a century, a monumental Tiffany stained-glass window hung in near-total obscurity at a Providence, Rhode Island, church. Now known as the Hartwell Memorial Window, the shimmering landscape was installed in 1917 and attracted just a handful of visitors each year, as Donita Naylor reported for the Providence Journal last February. Starting this weekend, thousands of art lovers will have […]

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Craft

Why Free, Miniature Art Galleries Are Popping Up Across the U.S.

For much of the past year, art lovers have found themselves unable to attend new exhibitions or visit their favorite museums. But COVID-19 hasn’t stopped people from sharing Art: From Zoom events to drive-by displays, options for socially distanced art appreciation abound. Among the most innovative offerings are Free Little Art Galleries (FLAGs). As Cathy Free reported for the Washington […]

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Craft

Māori May Have Reached Antarctica 1,000 Years Before Europeans

Sea voyages by Maori people may have reached Antarctica as early as the seventh century A.D.–more than a thousand years before the first European expeditions to the icy continent. As CNN’s Amy Sood reports, a new study published in the Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand pulls together existing historical sources that academic research has often neglected. These include […]

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Craft

Pioneering Sci-Fi Writer Octavia Butler Joins a Pantheon of Futurists

Octavia E. Butler discovered the appeal of science fiction when she was 12. When she became successful, the award-winning author revealed that her inspiration was the unimaginative 1954 film Devil Girl from Mars. After seeing it, the budding storyteller said she knew that she could do something better. Butler started writing at the age of 10 and begged her mother to buy […]

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Craft

First Museum Dedicated to American Arts and Crafts Movement Opens in Florida

The world’s only museum dedicated to the late 19th- and early 20th-century American art and Crafts movement opened today in St. Petersburg, Florida. Fittingly named the Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement (MAACM), the venue celebrates a creative philosophy that embraced fine artisanship and rejected the impersonal nature of industrialization. As Maggie Duffy reports for the Tampa Bay Times, the […]

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Craft

American History as Seen Through Quilts

Catherine Paul, her husband William, four sons, and William’s widowed mom moved to Solon in 1812 from Greenwich, Massachusetts. Catherine Paul embroidered this quilt with family images and the tower of Solon’s town meeting house. This quilt is part of the new exhibition opening in Boston in October. It includes 58 quilts, bedcovers, and other textiles that span […]

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Craft

Six Native Artists and Their Works Receive Major Recognition

Native Americans and other indigenous groups were not recognized as fine artists for decades. Native art has been displayed in isolation and separately from Western and American art. It was often curated to be an anthropological artifact and not a contemporary expression. Well-meaning exhibitions in prestigious venues such as the Art Institute of Chicago and New York’s Metropolitan […]

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Craft

Two New Shows Reflect the Shining Versatility of Glass

Glass art has its origins in ancient Egypt and Assyria. Glassblowing arose in first-century Rome. The beauty and versatility of the medium still bring innovations centuries later, as can be seen in two recent exhibitions from the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM). “New Glass Now” at SAAM’s Renwick Gallery, organized by the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, […]

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Craft

The Legend of the Music Tree

While browsing a Maine craft fair, I came across a guitar unlike any other. The guitar was hidden behind a display that included wooden bowls and cutting boards in the booth owned by woodworker David Smith. Smith, noticing my eager gaze, gently removed the instrument from its perch. He encouraged me to try it. I cradled the instrument […]

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Craft

Each Guitar Reuben Forsland Makes Tells a Story

Reuben Forsland, a master luthier, creates his magic in a one-room studio on a hilltop near the southwest coast of Vancouver Island. He is a storyteller. But the words he uses are not made of words. They’re made from wood and metal. Forsland builds custom acoustic instruments. The stories behind them and the collaborations he has with […]

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