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Jan Davidson Awarded Honorary Doctorate

by Cory Marie Podielski on October 25, 2017

in New & Noteworthy, Out & About

Nanette and Jan Davidson on the campus of the University of the South at Sewanee, TN.

A big congratulations to Jan Davidson for his honorary doctoral degree from the University of the South in Sewanee, TN! On October 6, Jan received an honorary doctorate of the fine arts for his accomplishments as folklorist and his leadership of the John C. Campbell Folk School. Jan retired earlier this year after 25 years of leadership.

During his tenure at the Folk School, Jan focused on programming, facility building and renovation, fundraising, historic preservation, and conservation. Under his direction, the school’s annual student enrollment has grown from 2500 students to an average of 6000 students. An accomplished writer, musician, and speaker, Jan has exemplified the Folk School’s mission of providing experiences in noncompetitive learning and community life that are joyful and enlivening.

Read an article about the award on The Sewanee Purple website. The Sewanee Purple is the student-run, student-published newspaper of The University of the South, located in Sewanee, Tennessee.

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Blacksmith & Fine Craft Auction: November 4

by Cory Marie Podielski on October 24, 2017

in Blacksmithing, Community Events

Join us for our Annual Blacksmith & Fine Craft Auction, set for Saturday, November 4 from 1-4 p.m. in the Keith House Community Room. We’ll enjoy a silent and live auction, featuring striking pieces from Folk School Resident Artists, instructors, students, and local artists. All auction proceeds benefit the Folk School’s programs, helping to guarantee that the School will continue to be a haven for artists’ creative inspiration. [click to continue…]

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Tend to Your Home & Hearth

by Cory Marie Podielski on October 13, 2017

in Class Picks, Featured Classes


October is here! Soon will be the time to gather around the table and to congregate in front of the fireplace. It is also a time to focus on crafts of the home and hearth. Consider our class picks to get you in the mood to get cozy around the fire and inspired for the fall season.

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Come on down to the Folk School Fall Festival this weekend. Enjoy music and
dance performances on two stages, shop for unique craft and art made by local and regional artisans, and view live craft demonstrations. Enjoy delicious food, and participate in many kids’ activities. The Fall Festival offers fun for the entire family.

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Collograph with Feather and Fabric

Last month’s printmaking class didn’t go as I’d planned.

The class was “Printmaking Paradise,” a survey of techniques, taught by Sally and Dick Walsh. In class, Sally taught us a few techniques each day. Some used the printing press, and some we could do at home with no fancy equipment. Sally encouraged us to have fun: to try everything but to go with the techniques we resonated with.

On day one, we tackled collagraphs. They seemed simple enough: spread ink onto a piece of matte board, lay found objects on top, cover with paper, and run the whole thing through the printing press. The first print will be a little sloppy, but the second and third will have more defined features, showing the textures of the objects. Sally’s example had a beautifully detailed feather printed on it.

I waited with eager fingers for my print to roll through the press. Then I peeled it off the board. My feather had printed as a disappointing white blotch: not enough ink. “Make another one!” Dick suggested, so I did, this time gopping on the ink under my feather. You can’t understand the process until you do it, I thought. Why did I expect things to be perfect the first time? [click to continue…]

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