MAY 1–JUNE 19, 2016

(Columbus, OH)—Opening May 1 at the Ohio Craft Museum, “The Best of 2016” will showcase contemporary fine craft by 55 artists. Juror Kate Lydon, director of exhibitions at the Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, selected nearly 75 works in clay, glass, metal, wood, fiber and mixed media. She selected the work from about 300 entries. Fourteen were selected for awards for excellence in the 33rd annual members competition, organized by Ohio Designer Craftsmen.

Lydon chose work by artists “who are attempting to make sense of their physical, as well as social and cultural, environments by creating art that shares narrative stories of memory, time, absence, location and representation.” Lydon noted that the “featured artists were recognized for their use of innovation and experimentation, and for presenting contemporary artworks that in many cases break new ground with form and technique.”

Cincinnati artist Renee Harris, recipient of the Watkins Printing Poster Award and Yassenoff Family Award for Excellence, creates vibrant, textured fiber art. “The continuous stimulation of everyday life observations inspires the visual dialogues between remembered color, light, texture, form and the intuitive design in my work,” she says. “The narrative nature of the pieces begins with simple, black line sketches that are revealed by way of methodical applications of chosen materials. Each stitch through fabric or paper becomes a drawing tool that transforms my ideas into tactile illustrations.”

The exhibition opens with a May 1 reception honoring award winners at the Ohio Craft Museum from 1 to 4 p.m. (A list of awards and their winners is attached.) At that time, the Ohio Designer Craftsmen Outstanding Achievement Award will be presented to Betty Talbott, executive director of ODC and a ceramics artist, for her long-time support of ODC and its mission, as well as her dedication to advancing the careers of young artists. After closing at the museum on June 19, the exhibition travels to the Willard Wankelman Gallery at Bowling Green State University, where it will be on view August 23–September 28, then to the Richard M. Ross Museum, Ohio Wesleyan University, October 25–December 15.

The Ohio Craft Museum is located at 1665 West Fifth Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43212. Hours: Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Saturday–Sunday, 1–4 p.m. Admission and parking are free. Telephone (614) 486-4402, or see our website www.ohiocraft.org, for further information. The museum is owned and operated by Ohio Designer Craftsmen and receives ongoing funding from the Greater Columbus Arts Council, Ohio Arts Council and the Columbus Foundation.