The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and Tennessee Craft on Friday launched Tennessee Craft Week with Diamond Rio’s Gene Johnson as honorary chairman. Tennessee Craft Week is Oct. 7-16 at all 14 Tennessee Welcome Centers across the state as well as more than 50 additional venues.
“Having built my career in the music industry, I can attest to the positive impact that the music and the arts bring to our state," said Gene Johnson, honorary Tennessee Craft Week chairman. "I also have a deep appreciation for handcrafted wood and what it takes to create a beautiful work of art. I am honored to be participating in this year’s initiative, and look forward to visiting the Nashville International Airport Craft demonstrations on Wednesday and the Pink Palace Craft Fair in Memphis, one week from today.”
Diane Sulg, CRAFT president and founder of American Craft Week; Bob Doak, president and CEO of Chattanooga Convention & Visitors Bureau; Teri Alea, executive director of Tennessee Craft; and Cindy Dupree, public relations director for the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development made remarks.
“No place has fulfilled the promise of American Craft Week better than Tennessee," said Diane Sulg, CRAFT President and American Craft Week Founder. "With the leadership of Tennessee Craft, the state has created a vibrant celebration of its artists, designers, and small creative businesses. What has emerged is a wonderful, statewide showcase of handcrafted art that attracts the attention and admiration of both residents and visitors to Tennessee.”
Craft artists Marjorie Langston, glass artist; Mary Hamby, fiber artist; Kacey Lynn, fiber farm artist; Lolly Durant, mixed media artist; and Jerry Bowman, wood-carving artist conducted demonstrations for attendees.
Tennessee Craft Week is a collection of craft events and happenings highlighting demonstrations of fiber, painting, metal and wood designed to connect and celebrate craft artists, the work they create and the businesses that support them.
The event shines a spotlight on the collective impact craft has on the state’s culture, community and economy. Tennessee Craft Week aligns with American Craft Week, which promotes the recognition of craft annually in October across the United States.
Providing authentic cultural experiences for residents and visitors each October, Tennessee Craft Week creates a stimulating environment for buyers of craft to connect on a deeper level with artists. It connects Tennessee artists to each other and their communities while expanding the reputation of artistry in the state. The economic and creative impact artists create in both urban and rural areas is also celebrated.
Partners of Tennessee Craft Week include Tennessee Craft Chapters, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, Arts at the Airport, Nashville International Airport, Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation, and Memphis Convention & Visitor’s Center.
For more information and a full schedule of events, visit www.tennesseecraft.org.