“The Cultivation of Human Sympathy”, Finding Ruskin, and an Online Halloween Art Museum Tour: This Weekend At a Glance

Compiled by Kate Nixon

This article has been updated to include the image of the new Education Center at Craftsman Farms and including links to registration.


The weekend of October 17th and 18th offers plenty of educational opportunities from the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms, the Roycroft Campus, the Gamble House, and there’s even a Halloween-themed tour of a well-known art museum planned for Sunday evening. Read on for more information about the virtual happenings this weekend…


The Craftsman: A Series from the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms
“The Cultivation of Human Sympathy”: Stickley’s Early Factory and the Ideal Workshop
Saturday, October 17th
1:00pm EDT

Register here: https://www.stickleymuseum.org/the-craftsman-course-descriptions/

Gustav Stickley.

There exists a tension, inherent in any discussions of the Arts and Crafts movement, between the ideals assigned to the movement, and the economic realities that governed production, and hindsight is often too blunt an instrument to be useful.  This session explores the early factory of Stickley–from 1898 to 1904–and his productions, not through the false binary of a gauzy idealism vs. insincere capitalist pandering, but looking more deeply at his factory as a mediation between these competing poles.  Originally planned as a topic for the Stickley Weekend Symposium, it is a more nuanced look at the current exhibition that explores the degree to which Stickley achieved –as Oscar Lovell Triggs wrote in The Craftsman–“a form of labor which aims to be artistic one the one hand and educative of the other.”  It frames Stickley’s factory in relation to Triggs’ ideal workshop, of which “the cultivation of human sympathy–that delicate something that is the source of all high endeavor” was a measure of success.

Click here to register for “The Cultivation of Human Sympathy”


Earlier this year, instructor Jonathan Clancy released an exhibition entitled Things Wrought by the United Crafts: an Expression of Modern Life, directly related to Saturday’s class. If you’d like to view the exhibit, you can do so here: https://jpclancy.com/SMCF/omeka-s/s/things-wrought/page/foreword


Education Center: Design Team Panel Discussion
A Members-Only Program
Saturday, October 17th
4:00pm EDT

A week before the grand opening of the museum’s new Education Center, Members are invited to a panel discussion examining this 5-year project from its early design phases to completion. Panelists from the project team will include Eric Holtermann and Kurt Leasure, of HMR Architects, and Jon Maass, of Maass, with Executive Director Vonda Givens.

Members Only can RSVP here https://www.stickleymuseum.org/learn/members-only-programs/


The New Education Center on the grounds of Craftsman Farms. Photo courtesy of Barbara Weiskittel.



Next week, we’ll delve into the Craftsman Gala, the annual fundraiser for The Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms and the Gala Pre-Party free to access and available on YouTube Live on October 24th!



Head, Hand, and Heart: Finding Ruskin through Roycroft
Saturday, October 17th
11:00am – 11:45pm EST

Heart, Heart and Hands: From Roycroft to Ruskin is about Kateri’s journey as an artist and teacher, beginning with a job as the overnight clerk at the Roycroft Inn, to a Google search that led her to John Ruskin’s Elements of Drawing, to becoming an artist-in-residence on the Roycroft Campus, which also led to her work being purchased by the Ruskin Collection at Museum Sheffield, UK. All along the way she began to understand the truth and necessity of Ruskin’s teachings that spurred her career as a professional artist and teacher, and it is those very teaching that form the foundation of her work as a teacher of watercolour and drawing.

Kateri Ewing is the author of Look Closer, Draw Better and Watercolor Is for Everyone (Quarto Publishing Group), and is an artist-in-residence and teacher at the Roycroft Campus in East Aurora, New York. Her artwork has won numerous awards in both local and national exhibitions, and can be found in collections worldwide, including the Ruskin Collection at Museum Sheffield in the UK. She uses her Patreon virtual classroom to interact with her students around the globe, daily. She lives in Western New York. You can visit her on the web at kateriewing.com.


Ruskin painting and quote by Kateri Ewing. Image: Roycroft Campus Corporation.



Ruskin, The Roycroft, and the Photograph
Saturday, October 17th
12:00pm – 12:45pm EST


Roycrofter-at-Large photographer Peter Potter will introduce John Ruskin: the photographer. Ruskin was an early adopter of the photographic process and his thoughts about the medium changed through time. Some of Ruskin’s recently discovered lost daguerreotypes of Venice will be shared.

In America, the Roycroft was at the crossroads as photography evolved from a documentary craft to an expressive art. The Albright Art Gallery, in Buffalo, New York, hosted the first exhibit of fine art photography in the world in 1910 and an enigmatic polymath named Carl Sadakichi Hartmann was the nexus for this connection. His influence and his role on the Roycroft Campus will be explored, along with the work of local photographers in the Buffalo Photo Pictorial Movement.

Peter Potter is a Roycrofter-at-Large Master Artisan in photography. For over 50 years, he has used his camera and refined post exposure processing techniques to present his vision of local and regional scenes. Peter grew up in East Aurora and in High School was a member of a club that explored the Roycroft called the Garcians. He started working at the Roycroft Inn in 1976 as a dishwasher and is currently a docent on the Roycroft Campus. When talking about his work, Mr. Potter comments: “My influences include Charles Burchfield, Charles Rohrbach, and R. Crumb. Burchfield inspires me with his spare palette, Rohrbach in his mastery of multiple styles, and R. Crumb with his intimate perspective and heavy texture. I try to represent how an item is held in my mind’s eye. To this end I use various devices to express those most distinctive characteristics that the subject left me with. I compose the image to highlight those features, and follow with post processing techniques. I approach each photograph with a different process, and usually use several programs to arrive at the final image. I consider a photograph a success if the viewer shares my vision.” For more information on the Roycrofters-at-Large Association please visit their website here.



The Gamble House


Saturday, October 17, 2020  |  11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. on Zoom Pacific Time

FREE to members | $5 non-members

Authors Richard Powers and Dominic Bradbury discuss their new publication, The Iconic American House: Architectural Masterworks Since 1900, a compendium of the most innovative and influential residential buildings in the United States since the beginning of the twentieth century.

Some of the world’s greatest architects, including Walter Gropius, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, have used their talents to create groundbreaking innovations in American residential architecture over the past 120 years. Though wide-ranging in style, these houses share a remarkable sensitivity to site and context; appreciation of local materials; experimentation with form, materials, and technology; and understanding of clients’ needs. Spanning the length and breadth of the United States, The Iconic American House features fifty of the most important, timeless, and recognizable houses designed since 1900.

For more information, visit The Gamble House’s website at https://gamblehouse.org/upcoming-events/


The National Gallery of Art
A Virtual Halloween Tour of the National Gallery of Art Collection (via Zoom)
Sunday, October 18th
7:00pm – 8:00pm EDT

Interested in a virtual tour of Washington DC’s National Gallery of Art with a Halloween theme? Follow Stephen Mead down this dark and dreary path at the National Gallery of Art from the comfort of your own home on Sunday, October 18th from 7:00pm – 8:00pm EDT.

You will see the National Gallery of Art’s highlights, historical showstoppers, and fan favorites. Enough to fill your Halloween bucket. He’ll stop to discuss each piece’s symbols, stories, and background. This tour is for ADULTS ONLY.

This tour is online and conducted through Zoom. Please download the Zoom App prior to the start of the tour. Please ensure that your WiFi connection is good to hear and view the tour.

Stephen Mead, tour guide and historian of the arts, lived in London until six years ago, where he was invited to lead tours of exhibitions at the Victoria and Albert Museum and give talks for the National Arts Collection Fund (UK). and worked for many educational institutions in Britain. Since moving to the DC area, he has led many tours of the capital’s museums and monuments for tourists, student groups and adults. Stephen is also a professional storyteller and brings his skills in storytelling to the historical and artistic areas he covers in his tours, providing both an educational and enjoyable experience.

Tickets are $15.00, plus a $2.55 nonrefundable fee.

Get your tickets from Eventbrite here