Catch ‘Em Before They’re Gone

If you’ve been keeping up with our Calendar of Events then you’ve probably noticed that a handful of incredible exhibitions are closing soon. Here then, in chronological order of their closing dates, are highlights of these must-see exhibitions. Make your plans to see them now before these collections are locked up tight back in their vaults.

Skilled Hands and High Ideals: The Arts & Crafts Movement in Deerfield; Deerfield, MA. Closes October 31.

Inspired by the Arts and Crafts Movement and the venerable collections at Memorial Hall Museum, a group of visionary women transformed Deerfield into one of the nation’s leading crafts centers. This exhibition at Memorial Hall Museum, Skilled Hands and High Ideals, traces historic and artistic themes of the social and design reform movement that encouraged handcraftsmanship, simplicity in design, and integrity of materials. Embroideries by the Deerfield Society of Blue and White Needlework, metalwork, furniture, basketry, weaving, netting and tufted work, and photography by the Society of Deerfield Industries and Deerfield Crafts are featured in the exhibition along with stories about the craftswomen and men.

Shearwater: The Christopher and Kristen Hogan Collection; Biloxi, MS. Closes November 30.

Christopher Hogan, MD and his wife Kristen enjoy a passion for collecting Shearwater Pottery. Their interest developed because of their fascination with the story of how Peter Anderson (1901–1984) was joined by his younger brothers, Walter Inglis (1903–1965) and James (“Mac”) McConnell (1907–1998), to form a family enterprise in Ocean Springs Mississippi. Shearwater Pottery is still in operation, continuing the proud family legacy by embracing the family’s traditional forms as well as creating a new body of work.

Women, Art & Social Change: The Newcomb Pottery Enterprise; New Orleans, LA. Closes March 9, 2014.

One of the most significant American art potteries of the twentieth century, Newcomb works are a graceful union of form and decoration inspired by the flora and fauna of the Gulf South. Each piece is one of a kind—and collectively they create a distinctive southern art form. In 1895, the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College, Tulane University’s women’s coordinate college, established the Newcomb Pottery in New Orleans, and conceived it as part artist collective, part social experiment, and part business enterprise initiative under the auspices of an educational program. The art school faculty incorporated the philosophies and tenets of the English Arts and Crafts movement into their curriculum to teach Southern women self-reliance by way of an education and gain financial independence through the sale of their wares. The Pottery thrived until 1940. (Not able to catch this museum in New Orleans? Don’t fret, it’s traveling to the Georgia Museum of Art in Athens next June!)

Women in Craft & Design; Minneapolis, MN. Closes July 20, 2014.

The Minneapolis Institute of Arts has opened up Women in Craft & Design, on display through July of 2014. Since the Arts and Crafts movement of the early 20th century, women have been an active force in craft and design. The movement’s predominant aim was to produce beautifully designed and well-made objects for everyday use. The democratic ambitions of Arts and Crafts appealed to female artists who were encouraged not only to participate, but also to lead. The innovation and creation of these early female modernists continues today, with original handcrafted objects and utilitarian works of art designed for mass production.

George E. Ohr: Selections from Gulf Coast Collections; Biloxi, MS. Ongoing.

This exhibition highlights work from the collection of the Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art and private collections across the Gulf Coast region. George Edgar Ohr, “The Mad Potter of Biloxi”, was active from 1883 to 1910, creating innovative ceramics that are a central part of the artistic heritage of the Gulf South, and the broader canon of American Art. Today, 100 years after he ended his pottery-making career, George Ohr is considered an early leader in the American modernist movement.

Top photo courtesy of the Memorial Hall Museum, Deerfield, MA.

Bottom photo courtesy of Newcomb Art Gallery, New Orleans, LA.