Kentucky Artisan Center

My wife and I have come to Cincinnati for our Thanksgiving family get together. Whenever we drive to Cincinnati, we stop in the Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Kentucky Artisan Center

We love coming to this place since it has such a wonderful collection of locally made crafts. In addition to the wonderful things for sale here, it also provides inspiration for some new direction to take my work.

There was a special exhibit of equestrian art, because this year the International Equestrian Festival was held in Lexington, about forty miles away. There were lots of wonderful horse inspired paintings and ceramics, but there was one beautiful turned platter by William Cook in the exhibit.

© 2010 Ed Malesky -William Cook Equestrian Platter

They have two permanent displays of local artists that have made it big. Rude Osolnik and Chris Ramsey. Rude was one of the great founding fathers of modern woodturning, best known for his iconic candlesticks.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Rude Osolnik Candlesticks

However, there were also some other beautiful pieces of Rude’s on display as well.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Rude Osolnik Bowls & Vessels

Chris Ramsey is best known for turning wooden hats, particularly western style hats. You can actually wear these.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Chris Ramsey Wooden Hats

There were also other examples of great woodturning all through the center.

One of these was the work of David Campbell, who does great open segmented turnings. Some of his small vessels contain hundreds of individually cut and glued segments.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - David Campbell's Open Segmented Forms

Here is one of my favorites from Kim Stechschulte. I just love the way he laminated the blank together to give both straight and sinuous movement in the piece.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Kim Stechschulte's Laminated Vessel

I also loved these painted bowls. I had not seen these before, but adding color and paint to my work is a direction I’ve been exploring and these bowls got me really thinking of additional possibilities.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Painted Bowls

This year with the unintended impacts that the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) has had on small scale crafters and the Small Business Saturday movement (as opposed to Black Friday), we wanted to buy more handmade Holiday gifts this year. The Kentucky Artisan Center was a good place to start, so we found a number of things that helped complete our shopping list.

© 2010 Ed Malesky - Kentucky Artisan Center Shopping

© 2010 Ed Malesky - More Shopping

Think about shopping for local and handmade items this year for the holidays.

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