|(L) Craft Center Students & Faculty Participating in a Raku Firing. (R) Hot Night Blacksmithing.|
WORCESTER, MA - Once a year, the Worcester Center for Crafts is turned inside out in celebration of craft's fiery traditions. On Friday evening, July 22 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm, HOT NIGHT IN THE CITY, a block-party style Open House, returns with plenty of heat. The public of all ages is invited to this exploration of craft's hot processes in and outside of the Craft Center at 25 Sagamore Road in Worcester. The evening also marks the opening of an exhibit in the Craft Center's Krikorian Gallery, A Mother Daughter Journey: Rosalie Olds and Claudia Olds Goldie.
Dusk's darkness will give way to the warm glow of artists' illuminating demonstrations on the ancient arts of glassblowing, raku firing, wheel throwing, flame working, blacksmithing and more. Wheel throwing under the stars will feature short introductory hands-on experiences with centering clay, and members of the public will be able to try their hands at throwing pots. A portable glass furnace will be set up in the parking lot to demonstrate the glassblowing that goes on daily at the Worcester Center for Crafts' New Street Glass Studio. Blacksmiths will forge metals, and the Raku artist Ginny Gillen and her class will do a pottery raku firing. A new feature this year will be the enamel raku fire, where super-hot enamel works will go straight from the kiln into combustible materials, creating a dazzling display. The cool of the evening will be provided by the locally renowned band, Jubilee Gardens. The public will be invited inside to participate in several maker activities in the Metals studios, including enameling-fusing glass pigments onto copper blanks in hot kilns-and to preview fall's class line-up. HOT NIGHT IN THE CITY will occur rain or shine.
"Hot Night gives us the opportunity to literally turn ourselves inside out in order to tell the community THANK YOU for being partners with us," said Honee Hess, executive director of the Crafts Center. "We have these 'hot' activities going on every day, but on HOT NIGHT we bring them out into the open for all to enjoy." Activities at HOT NIGHT are free to the public, although donations are accepted.
Fueling the crowd will be BT's Smokehouse of Sturbridge with its wood-fired barbeque, and Anzios with its wood-fired pizza. For dessert, Worcester State University alum, Renee King, will be bringing Queen's Cups' award-winning cupcakes to the event. Wooberry Frozen Yogurt will round out the sweetness of evening. To top things off for the over-21 crowd, Austin Liquors has arranged a beer tasting of Jack's Abby Beer during the evening. Food prices are set by vendors.
About the Worcester Center for Crafts:
The Worcester Center for Crafts (WCC) is one of the oldest non-profit institutions for craft study in the United States. Founded in 1856 as the Worcester Employment Society to help immigrant women produce and sell hand-crafted wares to support their families, the Center evolved over the past 155 years into New England's leading center for craft education, exhibition and entrepreneurship. In 2004, the organization expanded and opened the New Street Glass Studio - an off-campus, 8,000 square foot, state-of-the-art, multi-studio glass facility. The WCC offers the only comprehensive glass studio program in New England available to the public. Through an affiliation begun in 2009, the WCC is home to the Worcester State visual arts studios.
The Craft Center's mission is "to sustain craft as a vital part of our community" by providing high-quality craft education and training, by supporting craft artists in their professions, and through
advocacy and public education initiatives including adult education classes and workshops, youth education and outreach programs, exhibitions showcasing the work of established and emerging artists, artist residencies, lectures, family events, studio rentals, Gallery Store, and major events. The WCC is a member of the Worcester Cultural Coalition and its WOO card program, and receive funding from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.