Enriching lives through art and craft


In 2020, Arrowmont celebrates 75 years as a school of arts and crafts. ARROWMONT: 75 YEARS OF CRAFT EDUCATION presents archival images and articles to recognize this milestone. Add your memories to the collection  – click here to send us your pictures and stories!


1983 was a year that marked the continued success of Arrowmont’s year-round programming. From classes offered to the community and Elder Hostel students in the winter and spring; bustling workshops and campus improvements in summer; conferences and exhibitions in fall; Arrowmont thrived.

Sandy Blain exhibited new work

Arrowmont Executive Director Sandy Blain took a sabbatical in the Spring of ’83 from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville to complete a new body of work for two fall exhibitions.

“The pieces document a vital force within contemporary ceramic art: the use of the traditional vessel form as a vehicle for personal aesthetic statements. Through history the vessel has acquired a capacity to symbolize accrued human experiences and, for Sandy, the three dimensional form offers the opportunity for the exploration of inside and outside surfaces and space. Imagery is related to the circus – that ponderous spectacular event which allows the artist to forget her daily cares and enter a world of wonders.

Using a low fire red and white clay body, intense coloring, surface impressions, and asymmetrical patterning are characteristic of the thrown and/or handbuilt pieces. Drawing, stamping, stenciling, and airbrushing techniques are used with slips, underglazes, and overglazes to achieve the organic/inorganic bold pattern areas. The pieces undergo multiple firings to achieve a dramatic sense of depth and visual complexity.”


Arrowmont’s Atrium Windows receive Stained Glass upgrades

“As if by magic, a brilliant rainbow of colors now dances off the floors and walls of the gallery atrium area of Arrowmont.”

Stained glass instructor Charles Devillier designed and installed the new window with the help of his workshop class in the summer of 1983.

Colored light through stained glass projected onto gallery wall

Arrowmont crafts in the Movies

Baskets created by Rachel Nash Law, Arrowmont instructor, were carried by actress Jane Fonda in the movie, “The Dollmaker.” The movie portrays the life of a mountain woman named Gertie Nevels (played by Fonda) and depicts how she supports her family through her woodcarving during the Depression. Nash Law was contracted by the movie’s director in the midst of teaching a split basketry class at Arrowmont. She created three baskets in a traditional rib style for use in the production.

Click here to view the movie trailer.

“The Artist in Focus” Surface Design Conference at Arrowmont

The Surface Design Association held a fibers conference for over two hundred participants at Arrowmont in the fall of 1983. Lynn Mauser-Bain, resource artist for the fiber program a The Banff Center in Canada, was the Keynote Speaker. Multimedia presentations by Ed Lambert, Lenore Davis, and Richard Daehnert were joined by more traditional slide presentations given by studio artists exhibiting during the conference. Attendees enjoyed several exhibitions, panels, and the option of a three-day workshop following the event.



1983 Craft Workshops



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