Fitton exhibit puts the fine in fine arts crafts


Fitton exhibit puts the fine in fine arts crafts


What: Best of 2012 Exhibit

Where: Fitton Center for the Creative Arts, 101 S. Monument Ave., Hamilton,

When: Exhibit on view from Sept. 14-Nov. 9; reception 6 to 8 p.m. next Friday, Sept. 21

Cost: Free

More info: (513) 863-8873 or

The Fitton Center for Creative Arts will show fine craft arts from some of the best craft artists in Ohio and around the United States in its 29th annual Best of 2012 exhibit, on view from Sept. 14-Nov. 9.

The traveling art show, which is sponsored by Ohio Designer Craftsman Organization, will feature a variety of fine craft media from some of the more than 2,000 members of the organization.

“The artists range from emerging artists and student artists and artists who do not have a whole lot of experience, to ones that are internationally famous,” said Cathy Mayhugh, director of exhibitions for the Fitton Center.

One of the most well-known artists in the show is Nancy Crow, one of the founders of the art quilt movement in the United States. Her contemporary quilts are nothing like the quilts you may see in an antique store or draped over a couch. Crow’s quilts are colorful and wild, with shapes placed every which way. It seems as if Crow took a Picasso painting and seamlessly translated the painting into a quilt.

“What I love about this show is the variety of stuff to see,” said Mayhugh. “There are so many good pieces of art that you could really come back numerous times and not really see everything.”

Mayhugh said they have set up different galleries for the different kinds of art on display. One gallery room has a light and fun feeling, said Mayhugh, while the next gallery is dark and almost spooky.

“We have one ceramic piece, in the dark gallery, that is called ‘Pale Rider,’ ” said Mayhugh. “It is a grim reaper carrying a child on a horse. We also have another piece in that room that has bird skulls incorporated into it.”

The galleries were deliberately each set up with different themes to display the diverse amount of art. The Ohio Designer Craftsman Organization was founded to promote fine crafts, said Mayhugh, meaning the artwork on exhibit ranges from functional art like furniture or cabinetry to decorative artwork such as glass mosaics and earthen plates like William Brouillard’s piece, “Steam Punk Portrait of Dorian.”

Lloyd E. Herman, the founding director of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, conducted the judging of the event, which took place earlier this year at the Ohio Craft Museum in Columbus.

A free reception, which will be open to the public, will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sept. 21. The reception will have a bar and a jazz trio from Miami University will perform live music.

This showing will be the last chance to see the art, which traveled from the Ohio Craft Museum to the Wayne Center for the Arts in Wooster, Ohio, to the Fitton Center.

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