Upcoming events and things to do in Asheville, NC. Below is a list of events for festivals, concerts, art exhibitions, group meetups and more.

Interested in adding an event to our calendar? Please click the green “Post Your Event” button below.

Sunday, May 26, 2024
Call for Grant Panelists
May 26 all-day
online

GRANT SELECTION PANELS

ArtsAVL seeks reliable community members knowledgeable about Buncombe County’s arts and cultural organizations, local arts resources, and arts needs to volunteer to serve on ArtsAVL grant review panels.

ArtsAVL has 5 grant programs each fiscal year (July 1-June 30), with grant panels occurring throughout the year. Participating as a grant review panelist is a 2-4 week commitment depending on the number of applications submitted in the grant category. Applications vary based on grant program, and can range from 20-50 applications.

Panelists work with ArtsAVL staff and other panelists to evaluate grant applications, ensuring an equitable, transparent, and thorough review and ranking process. Panelists are offered a modest honorarium for their service and will be provided with detailed instructions and guidelines for review and scoring. Sufficient time is allocated for application review and scoring prior to a panelist meeting (either virtual or in person) to review scoring with ArtsAVL staff and make final recommendations.

Please note: All panelists will be required to disclose any connections to applicants and will have to recuse themselves from decisions around grant funding to those applicants. However, this does not prevent panelists from reviewing other applicants. Panelists must be 18+ and live or work in Buncombe County.

Call to artists: public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail
May 26 all-day
online

Artist Qualification Application

Explore Asheville, River Front Development Group, and the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail (BCHT) Advisory Committee seek artists to submit qualifications for consideration for public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail. Public art is art utilizing any media such as murals or sculptures in public spaces that are free and open to the public.

Project Background

In 2018 Explore Asheville, powered by the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority, supported the creation of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage trail in partnership with River Front Development Group through a Tourism Product Development Fund Grant. The process included community engagement, the creation of an advisory committee, research, design, installation, and the creation of a digital version of the trail.

Twenty-one signs at 14 sites throughout downtown, Southside, and the River Area in Asheville were installed December 2023. The content of the trail informs the physical path that the trail takes through the historically Black neighborhoods that surround and include downtown Asheville. The four interpretive goals for this project are:

  • Share the accomplishments and contributions of the Black community in Asheville.
  • Celebrate individuals and groups that supported the community.
  • Highlight Black people’s agency and the capacity to express individual power.
  • Combat or correct misconceptions and preserve history for future generations.

Phase II of the project will include enhancement and placemaking through public art.

Artist Eligibility

Explore Asheville invites applications from professional artists or designers aged 18 or older who are eligible to work in the United States. Qualified artists should have experience working within communities in or around Buncombe County and/or a proven record of accomplishment using materials and methods appropriate for large format outdoor art installations. Explore Asheville encourages artists who only have one qualification to partner with an artist or maker who can fulfill the other qualifications. New artists and/or collaboration are encouraged. This call for qualifications is open to all, regardless of experience or size of portfolio.

Spring Photo Contest: “Spring Inspiration”
May 26 – May 31 all-day
Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park
Cost: Included with Park admission.
The Arts for Schools Grant
May 26 all-day
online

The Arts for Schools Grant supports nonprofit arts organizations and qualified teaching artists in Buncombe County, enabling them to provide arts-focused performances, residencies, workshops, and field trips for students in K-12 public schools. Through 2027, grants will also support arts-focused afterschool programs and camps thanks to an investment from Dogwood Health Trust, which awarded $15 million in multi-year funding grants to support organizations across the region providing high-quality, evidence-based out-of-school-time (OST) programs that have a high impact on young people. Grants for in-school programs range from $500-$2,000, and grants for out-of-school programs (including afterschool and camps) range from $500-$5,000. The application cycle opens May 13 and closes June 17.

Transform Lives Through Art: Support the Asheville Art Museum’s Spring Annual Fund
May 26 all-day
Asheville Art Museum

At the Asheville Art Museum, we strive to transform lives through art. We do this by not only inviting people to experience the great works in our galleries, but also by creating opportunities to engage with the rich tapestry of artistic expression unfolding within our city today.

Our dynamic events provide an opportunity for community members and diverse artists to come together, fostering connection and inspiration for all participants. Here’s an example of this work in action: we recently held a Community Day inspired by our latest exhibition The New Salon: A Contemporary View, which celebrates Pop-Surrealist, Graffiti, and Street Art, the event centered around creative activities with a similarly rebellious spirit.

Community members were invited to express the most fantastical corners of their imagination with chalk, visit our Makerspace to design press-on nails with help from Asheville nail artist Rachel Ghazarian, get a glimpse of their future with a tarot reading from Krysta Beth Heidman, or enjoy the perfect soundtrack provided by local DJ Lil Meow Meow. The event concluded with spotlight talks and tours of the exhibition, which includes works from local artists Ian Wilkinson, Maxx Feist, Ishmael Leaver, Danny Reed, and Brian Mashburn, giving visitors the opportunity to engage directly with the works that inspired the day’s activities.

Your generous support is instrumental to initiatives like these, which foster vibrant connections between our community and the talented creatives who make Asheville’s art scene thrive. By contributing to our Spring Annual Fund, you play a crucial role in nurturing artistic excellence and enriching our community through the power of the arts.

“Nurtured by Nature” Art Exhibition
May 26 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
The Village Potters Clay Center 

The Village Potters Clay Center (TVPCC), announces the opening of “Nurtured by Nature”, a special exhibit featuring new works by each of the six resident potters of TVPCC.

When you have six wildly talented, skilled, and creative artists working together, it can be a challenge to pick a singular theme for a show. But it didn’t take long before the resident potters at TVPCC realized that they each had a connection to nature, and it expressed itself in different ways in their lives and work.

Sarah Wells Rolland grew up in Florida near the water and life that grew in and around it. For this exhibit, she has created singular pieces using broad strokes through slip to emulate Water Grass, and her deliciously beautiful glazes invite you to touch. You can almost feel a soft Florida breeze!

Judi Harwood has her work already rooted deeply in nature, using corn husks, bamboo leaves, and other organic materials in her sagger fired vessels. On a recent trip to the beach, she noticed an amazing pattern in the sand from the ebb and flow of the tide dragging shells across the sand. She knew instantly that she needed to carve a similar design in her pieces for Raku and other alternate firing processes, and you will find those pieces in this exhibit.

Caroline Renée Woolard has always had a deep love for nature, in particular the forest and the element of water and the rhythm of waves. You will find these things in the movement of her slip application, and in her carved mushrooms that invite a child-like sense of wonder and joy.

Katie Meili Messersmith is a self-proclaimed math nerd, and she loves the beauty of sequencing and patterning that she achieves in her slip dot applications on her pots. She also sees this beauty of math sequencing in nature, like in the petals of flowers, and has explored this in her work in a stunning series of bowls.

Julia Mann’s work has always been inspired by her love of nature and love of season, as well as her love of women and love of Goddess. Venus of Willendorf remains a guiding influence on her work more than twenty years after carving her first form. Julia has created new Venus pieces as well as pieces inscribed with other symbols of nature that inspire her, from spider webs to trees and mountains.

Lori Theriault grew up on the edge of the woods in central Vermont, and spent many afternoons hiking in the trees, touching each bark to feel what she saw. She also spent many nights star gazing with her father, waiting for an Apollo rocket to fly overhead. Lori represents her love of trees and flowers in functional work with her wax resist designs, and she is exploring more sculptural work in her “Vincent Series” that celebrates her love of a star-filled sky and her love and admiration for Van Gogh’s impasto technique in ‘Starry Night’.

Nurtured by Nature will be on exhibit through the end of June at The Village Potters Clay Center. The gallery is open daily, 10am-5pm.

The Village Potters are Sarah Wells Rolland, Judi Harwood, Lori Theriault, Julia Mann, Katie Meili Messersmith, and Caroline Renée Woolard, along with Director of Operations, Keira Peterson. They comprise an intentional Collective of potters who share a commitment to nurture creative exploration through education, experience, and community. The Village Potters includes a fine craft gallery, a Teaching Center offering ongoing classes in wheel, hand building, and sculpture for adults, an Advanced Ceramic Studies Program, and online demonstrations and workshops. The Village Potters Clay Center is an educational member of The Craft Guild of the Southern Highlands, and is an official distributor for Laguna Clays.

Art Exhibit: Dusk till Dawn
May 26 @ 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Blue Spiral 1 Gallery

May 3 – June 26, 2024 MON – SAT 11 – 6SUN 11 – 5

Artists: Caleb Clark, Bryant Holsenbeck, Bill Killebrew, Inigo Navarro, Isaac Payne, Amy Putansu, Daniel Robbins, Peggy Root, and Deborah Squier.

This group exhibition features paintings, collages, and sculptures that embody the alluring ambiance between sunrise and sunset. Plein air paintings capture the scattered, sleepy light of Dawn; Collaged drawings depict sidewalks blanketed by moonlight; Mixed-media sculptures portray nocturnal animals. Each artist reminds us of the recurrent and striking period of time when the atmosphere is neither totally dark, nor completely lit.

Honoring Nature: Early Southern Appalachian Landscape Painting
May 26 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum

In the early 1900s, travel by train and automobile became more accessible in the United States, leading to an increase in tourism and a revitalized interest in landscape painting. The relative ease of transportation, as well as the creation of National Parks, allowed people to experience the breathtaking landscapes of the United States in new ways. Artists traveled along popular routes, recording the terrain they encountered.

This exhibition explores the sublime natural landscapes of the Smokey Mountains of Western North Carolina and Tennessee. While there were several regional schools of painting around this time, this group is largely from the Midwest and many of the artists trained at the Art Institute of Chicago or in New York City. Through their travels, they captured waterfalls, sunsets, thunderstorms, autumn foliage, lush green summers, and snow-covered mountains—elements that were novel for viewers from cities and rural areas. Though some of these paintings include people, they are usually used for scale and painted with little to no detail, highlighting the magnificence of nature.

Rudolph F. Ingerle, Mirrored Mountain, not dated, oil on canvas, 28 × 32 inches. Courtesy of Allen & Barry Huffman, Asheville Art Museum.

Shifting Perceptions: Photographs from the Collection
May 26 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum
Shifting Perceptions: Photographs from the Collection, on view through May 17—September 23, 2024. Shifting Perceptions is guest-curated by Katherine Ware, curator of photography at the New Mexico Museum of Art, and continues the Museum’s 75th-anniversary celebration and highlights its expanding Collection.
Featuring over 125 photographs, the exhibition showcases works by 20th-century masters such as Ruth Bernhard, Bruce Davidson, Donna Ferrato, Carrie Mae Weems, and Jerry Uelsmann, alongside contemporary images by Jess T. Dugan, Matthew Pillsbury, and Cara Romero, among others. While some photographs offer a distinct point of view, many invite contemplation of the intersections and contradictions within each category. Recent acquisitions and longtime favorites are presented in new juxtapositions, providing fresh insights into the evolving landscape of photography.
The New Salon: A Contemporary View
May 26 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum
Bender Gallery Artists

Featured in

Asheville Art Museum Exhibition

The New Salon: A Contemporary View

The Asheville Art Museum will be opening their exhibit, The New Salon: A Contemporary View, on March 8 and it will run until August 19, 2024. The New Salon offers a modern take on the prestigious tradition of the Parisian Salon with the diversity and innovation of today’s art world. Guest-curated by Gabriel Shaffer, the show will include works from Pop Surrealism, Outsider Art, Street Art, and Graffiti genres.

 

Bender Gallery has been collaborating with the Asheville Art Museum to loan four paintings from three of our artists. The artists are Laine Bachman, Kukula, and Yui Sakamoto. Be sure to check out this special exhibition in downtown Asheville.

Learn More

Kukula, Impossible Voyage, oil on board, 48 x 24 inches

Kukula (b. 1980, Israel)

Nataly Abramovitch, better known in the art world as, Kukula, paints imagined worlds filled with elaborately dressed women in fanciful settings. The artist does extensive research on the layouts of paintings from the Renaissance and Rococo periods. Kukula subverts these images by depicting women characters in place of traditionally male positions and settings. Her characters are powerful, commanding, and have an air of indifference.

Available Work

Yui Sakamoto, Self Portrait, oil on canvas, 63 x 63 inches

Yui Sakamoto (b. 1981, Japan)

Our surrealist artist, Yui Sakamoto, will have two paintings featured including My Soul and Self Portrait. Self Portrait is still available from his recent solo exhibition at Bender Gallery. Standing in front of Self Portrait, one is immersed in the dual-worlds of Sakamoto’s Japanese and Mexican cultures. There is a sense of calm reflected in the repeating rose pattern, mixed with the uneasy realization that the coral, fungi, and otherworldly forms are what makeup the figure.

Available Work

Laine Bachman, Night Bloomers, acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches

Laine Bachman (b. 1974, USA)

Our prolific Magical Realism artist, Laine Bachman, makes a feature in the exhibition with her painting, Night Bloomers. She has been hard at work making 17 new pieces for her solo exhibition at the Canton Art Museum in Canton, Ohio. The Canton show opens on April 28 and continues through to July 28, 2024.

Available Work
Monday, May 27, 2024
Call for Grant Panelists
May 27 all-day
online

GRANT SELECTION PANELS

ArtsAVL seeks reliable community members knowledgeable about Buncombe County’s arts and cultural organizations, local arts resources, and arts needs to volunteer to serve on ArtsAVL grant review panels.

ArtsAVL has 5 grant programs each fiscal year (July 1-June 30), with grant panels occurring throughout the year. Participating as a grant review panelist is a 2-4 week commitment depending on the number of applications submitted in the grant category. Applications vary based on grant program, and can range from 20-50 applications.

Panelists work with ArtsAVL staff and other panelists to evaluate grant applications, ensuring an equitable, transparent, and thorough review and ranking process. Panelists are offered a modest honorarium for their service and will be provided with detailed instructions and guidelines for review and scoring. Sufficient time is allocated for application review and scoring prior to a panelist meeting (either virtual or in person) to review scoring with ArtsAVL staff and make final recommendations.

Please note: All panelists will be required to disclose any connections to applicants and will have to recuse themselves from decisions around grant funding to those applicants. However, this does not prevent panelists from reviewing other applicants. Panelists must be 18+ and live or work in Buncombe County.

Call to artists: public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail
May 27 all-day
online

Artist Qualification Application

Explore Asheville, River Front Development Group, and the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail (BCHT) Advisory Committee seek artists to submit qualifications for consideration for public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail. Public art is art utilizing any media such as murals or sculptures in public spaces that are free and open to the public.

Project Background

In 2018 Explore Asheville, powered by the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority, supported the creation of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage trail in partnership with River Front Development Group through a Tourism Product Development Fund Grant. The process included community engagement, the creation of an advisory committee, research, design, installation, and the creation of a digital version of the trail.

Twenty-one signs at 14 sites throughout downtown, Southside, and the River Area in Asheville were installed December 2023. The content of the trail informs the physical path that the trail takes through the historically Black neighborhoods that surround and include downtown Asheville. The four interpretive goals for this project are:

  • Share the accomplishments and contributions of the Black community in Asheville.
  • Celebrate individuals and groups that supported the community.
  • Highlight Black people’s agency and the capacity to express individual power.
  • Combat or correct misconceptions and preserve history for future generations.

Phase II of the project will include enhancement and placemaking through public art.

Artist Eligibility

Explore Asheville invites applications from professional artists or designers aged 18 or older who are eligible to work in the United States. Qualified artists should have experience working within communities in or around Buncombe County and/or a proven record of accomplishment using materials and methods appropriate for large format outdoor art installations. Explore Asheville encourages artists who only have one qualification to partner with an artist or maker who can fulfill the other qualifications. New artists and/or collaboration are encouraged. This call for qualifications is open to all, regardless of experience or size of portfolio.

The Arts for Schools Grant
May 27 all-day
online

The Arts for Schools Grant supports nonprofit arts organizations and qualified teaching artists in Buncombe County, enabling them to provide arts-focused performances, residencies, workshops, and field trips for students in K-12 public schools. Through 2027, grants will also support arts-focused afterschool programs and camps thanks to an investment from Dogwood Health Trust, which awarded $15 million in multi-year funding grants to support organizations across the region providing high-quality, evidence-based out-of-school-time (OST) programs that have a high impact on young people. Grants for in-school programs range from $500-$2,000, and grants for out-of-school programs (including afterschool and camps) range from $500-$5,000. The application cycle opens May 13 and closes June 17.

Transform Lives Through Art: Support the Asheville Art Museum’s Spring Annual Fund
May 27 all-day
Asheville Art Museum

At the Asheville Art Museum, we strive to transform lives through art. We do this by not only inviting people to experience the great works in our galleries, but also by creating opportunities to engage with the rich tapestry of artistic expression unfolding within our city today.

Our dynamic events provide an opportunity for community members and diverse artists to come together, fostering connection and inspiration for all participants. Here’s an example of this work in action: we recently held a Community Day inspired by our latest exhibition The New Salon: A Contemporary View, which celebrates Pop-Surrealist, Graffiti, and Street Art, the event centered around creative activities with a similarly rebellious spirit.

Community members were invited to express the most fantastical corners of their imagination with chalk, visit our Makerspace to design press-on nails with help from Asheville nail artist Rachel Ghazarian, get a glimpse of their future with a tarot reading from Krysta Beth Heidman, or enjoy the perfect soundtrack provided by local DJ Lil Meow Meow. The event concluded with spotlight talks and tours of the exhibition, which includes works from local artists Ian Wilkinson, Maxx Feist, Ishmael Leaver, Danny Reed, and Brian Mashburn, giving visitors the opportunity to engage directly with the works that inspired the day’s activities.

Your generous support is instrumental to initiatives like these, which foster vibrant connections between our community and the talented creatives who make Asheville’s art scene thrive. By contributing to our Spring Annual Fund, you play a crucial role in nurturing artistic excellence and enriching our community through the power of the arts.

“Nurtured by Nature” Art Exhibition
May 27 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
The Village Potters Clay Center 

The Village Potters Clay Center (TVPCC), announces the opening of “Nurtured by Nature”, a special exhibit featuring new works by each of the six resident potters of TVPCC.

When you have six wildly talented, skilled, and creative artists working together, it can be a challenge to pick a singular theme for a show. But it didn’t take long before the resident potters at TVPCC realized that they each had a connection to nature, and it expressed itself in different ways in their lives and work.

Sarah Wells Rolland grew up in Florida near the water and life that grew in and around it. For this exhibit, she has created singular pieces using broad strokes through slip to emulate Water Grass, and her deliciously beautiful glazes invite you to touch. You can almost feel a soft Florida breeze!

Judi Harwood has her work already rooted deeply in nature, using corn husks, bamboo leaves, and other organic materials in her sagger fired vessels. On a recent trip to the beach, she noticed an amazing pattern in the sand from the ebb and flow of the tide dragging shells across the sand. She knew instantly that she needed to carve a similar design in her pieces for Raku and other alternate firing processes, and you will find those pieces in this exhibit.

Caroline Renée Woolard has always had a deep love for nature, in particular the forest and the element of water and the rhythm of waves. You will find these things in the movement of her slip application, and in her carved mushrooms that invite a child-like sense of wonder and joy.

Katie Meili Messersmith is a self-proclaimed math nerd, and she loves the beauty of sequencing and patterning that she achieves in her slip dot applications on her pots. She also sees this beauty of math sequencing in nature, like in the petals of flowers, and has explored this in her work in a stunning series of bowls.

Julia Mann’s work has always been inspired by her love of nature and love of season, as well as her love of women and love of Goddess. Venus of Willendorf remains a guiding influence on her work more than twenty years after carving her first form. Julia has created new Venus pieces as well as pieces inscribed with other symbols of nature that inspire her, from spider webs to trees and mountains.

Lori Theriault grew up on the edge of the woods in central Vermont, and spent many afternoons hiking in the trees, touching each bark to feel what she saw. She also spent many nights star gazing with her father, waiting for an Apollo rocket to fly overhead. Lori represents her love of trees and flowers in functional work with her wax resist designs, and she is exploring more sculptural work in her “Vincent Series” that celebrates her love of a star-filled sky and her love and admiration for Van Gogh’s impasto technique in ‘Starry Night’.

Nurtured by Nature will be on exhibit through the end of June at The Village Potters Clay Center. The gallery is open daily, 10am-5pm.

The Village Potters are Sarah Wells Rolland, Judi Harwood, Lori Theriault, Julia Mann, Katie Meili Messersmith, and Caroline Renée Woolard, along with Director of Operations, Keira Peterson. They comprise an intentional Collective of potters who share a commitment to nurture creative exploration through education, experience, and community. The Village Potters includes a fine craft gallery, a Teaching Center offering ongoing classes in wheel, hand building, and sculpture for adults, an Advanced Ceramic Studies Program, and online demonstrations and workshops. The Village Potters Clay Center is an educational member of The Craft Guild of the Southern Highlands, and is an official distributor for Laguna Clays.

Art Exhibition: Hammer and Hope
May 27 @ 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Center for Craft

Historians estimate that skilled Black artisans outnumbered their white counterparts in the antebellum South by a margin of five to one. However, despite their presence and prevalence in all corners of the pre-industrial trade and craft fields, the stories of these skilled workers go largely unacknowledged.

Borrowing its title from a Black culture and politics magazine of the same name, Hammer and Hope celebrates the life and labor of Black chairmakers in early America. Featuring the work of two contemporary furniture makers – Robell Awake and Charlie Ryland – the pieces in this exhibition are based on the artists’ research into ladderback chairs created by the Poynors, a multigenerational family of free and enslaved craftspeople working in central Tennessee between the early nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Through the objects featured in Hammer and Hope, Awake and Ryland explore, reinterpret, and reimagine what the field of furniture-making today would look like had the history and legacy of the Poynors – and countless others that have been subject to a similar pattern of erasure – been celebrated rather than hidden. Hammer and Hope represents Awake and Ryland’s attempts, in their own words,  “at fighting erasure by making objects that engage with these long-suppressed stories.”

Robell Awake and Charlie Ryland are recipients of the Center for Craft’s 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship. This substantial mid-career grant is awarded to two artists to support research projects that advance, expand, and support the creation of new research and knowledge through craft practice.

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas
May 27 @ 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Center for Craft

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas features eleven textiles by acclaimed Indigenous artisanas  (artists) from Chiapas, Mexico commissioned by US-based fiber artists and activist Aram Han Sifuentes. As part of their 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship, Han Sifuentes traveled to Chiapas to understand the function of garments and textiles within the social and cultural context of the area and to learn the traditional practice of backstrap weaving. Through the works on view, combined with a series of interviews Han Sifuentes conducted during her research, visitors learn about the artisanas and their role as preservers, rescuers, and innovators of culture and as protectors of Mayan ancestral knowledge. Together, these works present an approach to connecting and learning about culture through craft practices

Han Sifuentes is interested in backstrap weaving because it is one of the oldest forms used across cultures. The vibrant hues and elaborate designs of each textile express the artisanas identities and medium to tell their stories. To understand how these values manifested in textiles made in Chiapas, Han Sifuentes invited the artisanas to create whatever weaving they desired over the course of three months.  This is unique because most textiles in the area are created to meet tourist-driven and marketplace demands. Incorporating traditional backstrap weaving and natural dye techniques, some artisans created textiles to rescue or reintroduce weaving practices that are almost or completely lost in their communities, while others were created through material and conceptual experimentation. This range of approaches reflects how artistanas are constantly innovating while at the same time honoring and keeping to tradition.

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas is on view from November 17, 2023 to July 13, 2024.

Aram Han Sifuentes is a recipient of the Center for Craft’s 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship. This substantial mid-career grant is awarded to two artists to support research projects that advance, expand, and support the creation of new research and knowledge through craft practice.

The featured artisanas include: Juana Victoria Hernandez Gomez from San Juan Cancuc, Maria Josefina Gómez Sanchez and Maria de Jesus Gómez Sanchez from Oxchujk (Oxchuc), Marcela Gómez Diaz and Cecilia Gómez Diaz from San Andrés Larráinzar, Rosa Margarita Enríquez Bolóm from Huixtán, Cristina García Pérez from Chalchihuitán, Susana Maria Gómez Gonzalez, Maria Gonzalez Guillén, and Anastacia Juana Gómez Gonzalez from Zinacantán, Angelica Leticia Gómez Santiz from Pantelhó, and Susana Guadalupe Méndez Santiz from Aldama

 

Art Exhibit: Dusk till Dawn
May 27 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Blue Spiral 1 Gallery

May 3 – June 26, 2024 MON – SAT 11 – 6SUN 11 – 5

Artists: Caleb Clark, Bryant Holsenbeck, Bill Killebrew, Inigo Navarro, Isaac Payne, Amy Putansu, Daniel Robbins, Peggy Root, and Deborah Squier.

This group exhibition features paintings, collages, and sculptures that embody the alluring ambiance between sunrise and sunset. Plein air paintings capture the scattered, sleepy light of Dawn; Collaged drawings depict sidewalks blanketed by moonlight; Mixed-media sculptures portray nocturnal animals. Each artist reminds us of the recurrent and striking period of time when the atmosphere is neither totally dark, nor completely lit.

Honoring Nature: Early Southern Appalachian Landscape Painting
May 27 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum

In the early 1900s, travel by train and automobile became more accessible in the United States, leading to an increase in tourism and a revitalized interest in landscape painting. The relative ease of transportation, as well as the creation of National Parks, allowed people to experience the breathtaking landscapes of the United States in new ways. Artists traveled along popular routes, recording the terrain they encountered.

This exhibition explores the sublime natural landscapes of the Smokey Mountains of Western North Carolina and Tennessee. While there were several regional schools of painting around this time, this group is largely from the Midwest and many of the artists trained at the Art Institute of Chicago or in New York City. Through their travels, they captured waterfalls, sunsets, thunderstorms, autumn foliage, lush green summers, and snow-covered mountains—elements that were novel for viewers from cities and rural areas. Though some of these paintings include people, they are usually used for scale and painted with little to no detail, highlighting the magnificence of nature.

Rudolph F. Ingerle, Mirrored Mountain, not dated, oil on canvas, 28 × 32 inches. Courtesy of Allen & Barry Huffman, Asheville Art Museum.

Shifting Perceptions: Photographs from the Collection
May 27 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum
Shifting Perceptions: Photographs from the Collection, on view through May 17—September 23, 2024. Shifting Perceptions is guest-curated by Katherine Ware, curator of photography at the New Mexico Museum of Art, and continues the Museum’s 75th-anniversary celebration and highlights its expanding Collection.
Featuring over 125 photographs, the exhibition showcases works by 20th-century masters such as Ruth Bernhard, Bruce Davidson, Donna Ferrato, Carrie Mae Weems, and Jerry Uelsmann, alongside contemporary images by Jess T. Dugan, Matthew Pillsbury, and Cara Romero, among others. While some photographs offer a distinct point of view, many invite contemplation of the intersections and contradictions within each category. Recent acquisitions and longtime favorites are presented in new juxtapositions, providing fresh insights into the evolving landscape of photography.
The New Salon: A Contemporary View
May 27 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum
Bender Gallery Artists

Featured in

Asheville Art Museum Exhibition

The New Salon: A Contemporary View

The Asheville Art Museum will be opening their exhibit, The New Salon: A Contemporary View, on March 8 and it will run until August 19, 2024. The New Salon offers a modern take on the prestigious tradition of the Parisian Salon with the diversity and innovation of today’s art world. Guest-curated by Gabriel Shaffer, the show will include works from Pop Surrealism, Outsider Art, Street Art, and Graffiti genres.

 

Bender Gallery has been collaborating with the Asheville Art Museum to loan four paintings from three of our artists. The artists are Laine Bachman, Kukula, and Yui Sakamoto. Be sure to check out this special exhibition in downtown Asheville.

Learn More

Kukula, Impossible Voyage, oil on board, 48 x 24 inches

Kukula (b. 1980, Israel)

Nataly Abramovitch, better known in the art world as, Kukula, paints imagined worlds filled with elaborately dressed women in fanciful settings. The artist does extensive research on the layouts of paintings from the Renaissance and Rococo periods. Kukula subverts these images by depicting women characters in place of traditionally male positions and settings. Her characters are powerful, commanding, and have an air of indifference.

Available Work

Yui Sakamoto, Self Portrait, oil on canvas, 63 x 63 inches

Yui Sakamoto (b. 1981, Japan)

Our surrealist artist, Yui Sakamoto, will have two paintings featured including My Soul and Self Portrait. Self Portrait is still available from his recent solo exhibition at Bender Gallery. Standing in front of Self Portrait, one is immersed in the dual-worlds of Sakamoto’s Japanese and Mexican cultures. There is a sense of calm reflected in the repeating rose pattern, mixed with the uneasy realization that the coral, fungi, and otherworldly forms are what makeup the figure.

Available Work

Laine Bachman, Night Bloomers, acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches

Laine Bachman (b. 1974, USA)

Our prolific Magical Realism artist, Laine Bachman, makes a feature in the exhibition with her painting, Night Bloomers. She has been hard at work making 17 new pieces for her solo exhibition at the Canton Art Museum in Canton, Ohio. The Canton show opens on April 28 and continues through to July 28, 2024.

Available Work
Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Arts Discounts Page
May 28 all-day
online w/ ArtsAVL
Call for Grant Panelists
May 28 all-day
online

GRANT SELECTION PANELS

ArtsAVL seeks reliable community members knowledgeable about Buncombe County’s arts and cultural organizations, local arts resources, and arts needs to volunteer to serve on ArtsAVL grant review panels.

ArtsAVL has 5 grant programs each fiscal year (July 1-June 30), with grant panels occurring throughout the year. Participating as a grant review panelist is a 2-4 week commitment depending on the number of applications submitted in the grant category. Applications vary based on grant program, and can range from 20-50 applications.

Panelists work with ArtsAVL staff and other panelists to evaluate grant applications, ensuring an equitable, transparent, and thorough review and ranking process. Panelists are offered a modest honorarium for their service and will be provided with detailed instructions and guidelines for review and scoring. Sufficient time is allocated for application review and scoring prior to a panelist meeting (either virtual or in person) to review scoring with ArtsAVL staff and make final recommendations.

Please note: All panelists will be required to disclose any connections to applicants and will have to recuse themselves from decisions around grant funding to those applicants. However, this does not prevent panelists from reviewing other applicants. Panelists must be 18+ and live or work in Buncombe County.

Call to artists: public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail
May 28 all-day
online

Artist Qualification Application

Explore Asheville, River Front Development Group, and the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail (BCHT) Advisory Committee seek artists to submit qualifications for consideration for public art enhancements of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail. Public art is art utilizing any media such as murals or sculptures in public spaces that are free and open to the public.

Project Background

In 2018 Explore Asheville, powered by the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority, supported the creation of the Asheville Black Cultural Heritage trail in partnership with River Front Development Group through a Tourism Product Development Fund Grant. The process included community engagement, the creation of an advisory committee, research, design, installation, and the creation of a digital version of the trail.

Twenty-one signs at 14 sites throughout downtown, Southside, and the River Area in Asheville were installed December 2023. The content of the trail informs the physical path that the trail takes through the historically Black neighborhoods that surround and include downtown Asheville. The four interpretive goals for this project are:

  • Share the accomplishments and contributions of the Black community in Asheville.
  • Celebrate individuals and groups that supported the community.
  • Highlight Black people’s agency and the capacity to express individual power.
  • Combat or correct misconceptions and preserve history for future generations.

Phase II of the project will include enhancement and placemaking through public art.

Artist Eligibility

Explore Asheville invites applications from professional artists or designers aged 18 or older who are eligible to work in the United States. Qualified artists should have experience working within communities in or around Buncombe County and/or a proven record of accomplishment using materials and methods appropriate for large format outdoor art installations. Explore Asheville encourages artists who only have one qualification to partner with an artist or maker who can fulfill the other qualifications. New artists and/or collaboration are encouraged. This call for qualifications is open to all, regardless of experience or size of portfolio.

The Arts for Schools Grant
May 28 all-day
online

The Arts for Schools Grant supports nonprofit arts organizations and qualified teaching artists in Buncombe County, enabling them to provide arts-focused performances, residencies, workshops, and field trips for students in K-12 public schools. Through 2027, grants will also support arts-focused afterschool programs and camps thanks to an investment from Dogwood Health Trust, which awarded $15 million in multi-year funding grants to support organizations across the region providing high-quality, evidence-based out-of-school-time (OST) programs that have a high impact on young people. Grants for in-school programs range from $500-$2,000, and grants for out-of-school programs (including afterschool and camps) range from $500-$5,000. The application cycle opens May 13 and closes June 17.

“Nurtured by Nature” Art Exhibition
May 28 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
The Village Potters Clay Center 

The Village Potters Clay Center (TVPCC), announces the opening of “Nurtured by Nature”, a special exhibit featuring new works by each of the six resident potters of TVPCC.

When you have six wildly talented, skilled, and creative artists working together, it can be a challenge to pick a singular theme for a show. But it didn’t take long before the resident potters at TVPCC realized that they each had a connection to nature, and it expressed itself in different ways in their lives and work.

Sarah Wells Rolland grew up in Florida near the water and life that grew in and around it. For this exhibit, she has created singular pieces using broad strokes through slip to emulate Water Grass, and her deliciously beautiful glazes invite you to touch. You can almost feel a soft Florida breeze!

Judi Harwood has her work already rooted deeply in nature, using corn husks, bamboo leaves, and other organic materials in her sagger fired vessels. On a recent trip to the beach, she noticed an amazing pattern in the sand from the ebb and flow of the tide dragging shells across the sand. She knew instantly that she needed to carve a similar design in her pieces for Raku and other alternate firing processes, and you will find those pieces in this exhibit.

Caroline Renée Woolard has always had a deep love for nature, in particular the forest and the element of water and the rhythm of waves. You will find these things in the movement of her slip application, and in her carved mushrooms that invite a child-like sense of wonder and joy.

Katie Meili Messersmith is a self-proclaimed math nerd, and she loves the beauty of sequencing and patterning that she achieves in her slip dot applications on her pots. She also sees this beauty of math sequencing in nature, like in the petals of flowers, and has explored this in her work in a stunning series of bowls.

Julia Mann’s work has always been inspired by her love of nature and love of season, as well as her love of women and love of Goddess. Venus of Willendorf remains a guiding influence on her work more than twenty years after carving her first form. Julia has created new Venus pieces as well as pieces inscribed with other symbols of nature that inspire her, from spider webs to trees and mountains.

Lori Theriault grew up on the edge of the woods in central Vermont, and spent many afternoons hiking in the trees, touching each bark to feel what she saw. She also spent many nights star gazing with her father, waiting for an Apollo rocket to fly overhead. Lori represents her love of trees and flowers in functional work with her wax resist designs, and she is exploring more sculptural work in her “Vincent Series” that celebrates her love of a star-filled sky and her love and admiration for Van Gogh’s impasto technique in ‘Starry Night’.

Nurtured by Nature will be on exhibit through the end of June at The Village Potters Clay Center. The gallery is open daily, 10am-5pm.

The Village Potters are Sarah Wells Rolland, Judi Harwood, Lori Theriault, Julia Mann, Katie Meili Messersmith, and Caroline Renée Woolard, along with Director of Operations, Keira Peterson. They comprise an intentional Collective of potters who share a commitment to nurture creative exploration through education, experience, and community. The Village Potters includes a fine craft gallery, a Teaching Center offering ongoing classes in wheel, hand building, and sculpture for adults, an Advanced Ceramic Studies Program, and online demonstrations and workshops. The Village Potters Clay Center is an educational member of The Craft Guild of the Southern Highlands, and is an official distributor for Laguna Clays.

Art Exhibition: Hammer and Hope
May 28 @ 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Center for Craft

Historians estimate that skilled Black artisans outnumbered their white counterparts in the antebellum South by a margin of five to one. However, despite their presence and prevalence in all corners of the pre-industrial trade and craft fields, the stories of these skilled workers go largely unacknowledged.

Borrowing its title from a Black culture and politics magazine of the same name, Hammer and Hope celebrates the life and labor of Black chairmakers in early America. Featuring the work of two contemporary furniture makers – Robell Awake and Charlie Ryland – the pieces in this exhibition are based on the artists’ research into ladderback chairs created by the Poynors, a multigenerational family of free and enslaved craftspeople working in central Tennessee between the early nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Through the objects featured in Hammer and Hope, Awake and Ryland explore, reinterpret, and reimagine what the field of furniture-making today would look like had the history and legacy of the Poynors – and countless others that have been subject to a similar pattern of erasure – been celebrated rather than hidden. Hammer and Hope represents Awake and Ryland’s attempts, in their own words,  “at fighting erasure by making objects that engage with these long-suppressed stories.”

Robell Awake and Charlie Ryland are recipients of the Center for Craft’s 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship. This substantial mid-career grant is awarded to two artists to support research projects that advance, expand, and support the creation of new research and knowledge through craft practice.

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas
May 28 @ 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Center for Craft

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas features eleven textiles by acclaimed Indigenous artisanas  (artists) from Chiapas, Mexico commissioned by US-based fiber artists and activist Aram Han Sifuentes. As part of their 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship, Han Sifuentes traveled to Chiapas to understand the function of garments and textiles within the social and cultural context of the area and to learn the traditional practice of backstrap weaving. Through the works on view, combined with a series of interviews Han Sifuentes conducted during her research, visitors learn about the artisanas and their role as preservers, rescuers, and innovators of culture and as protectors of Mayan ancestral knowledge. Together, these works present an approach to connecting and learning about culture through craft practices

Han Sifuentes is interested in backstrap weaving because it is one of the oldest forms used across cultures. The vibrant hues and elaborate designs of each textile express the artisanas identities and medium to tell their stories. To understand how these values manifested in textiles made in Chiapas, Han Sifuentes invited the artisanas to create whatever weaving they desired over the course of three months.  This is unique because most textiles in the area are created to meet tourist-driven and marketplace demands. Incorporating traditional backstrap weaving and natural dye techniques, some artisans created textiles to rescue or reintroduce weaving practices that are almost or completely lost in their communities, while others were created through material and conceptual experimentation. This range of approaches reflects how artistanas are constantly innovating while at the same time honoring and keeping to tradition.

Preservers, Innovators, and Rescuers of Culture in Chiapas is on view from November 17, 2023 to July 13, 2024.

Aram Han Sifuentes is a recipient of the Center for Craft’s 2022 Craft Research Fund Artist Fellowship. This substantial mid-career grant is awarded to two artists to support research projects that advance, expand, and support the creation of new research and knowledge through craft practice.

The featured artisanas include: Juana Victoria Hernandez Gomez from San Juan Cancuc, Maria Josefina Gómez Sanchez and Maria de Jesus Gómez Sanchez from Oxchujk (Oxchuc), Marcela Gómez Diaz and Cecilia Gómez Diaz from San Andrés Larráinzar, Rosa Margarita Enríquez Bolóm from Huixtán, Cristina García Pérez from Chalchihuitán, Susana Maria Gómez Gonzalez, Maria Gonzalez Guillén, and Anastacia Juana Gómez Gonzalez from Zinacantán, Angelica Leticia Gómez Santiz from Pantelhó, and Susana Guadalupe Méndez Santiz from Aldama

 

Art Exhibit: Dusk till Dawn
May 28 @ 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Blue Spiral 1 Gallery

May 3 – June 26, 2024 MON – SAT 11 – 6SUN 11 – 5

Artists: Caleb Clark, Bryant Holsenbeck, Bill Killebrew, Inigo Navarro, Isaac Payne, Amy Putansu, Daniel Robbins, Peggy Root, and Deborah Squier.

This group exhibition features paintings, collages, and sculptures that embody the alluring ambiance between sunrise and sunset. Plein air paintings capture the scattered, sleepy light of Dawn; Collaged drawings depict sidewalks blanketed by moonlight; Mixed-media sculptures portray nocturnal animals. Each artist reminds us of the recurrent and striking period of time when the atmosphere is neither totally dark, nor completely lit.

Parents Lounge
May 28 @ 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm
LEAF Global Arts

LEAF isn’t just for kids! Join us in the Mezzanine while you wait for your youth to finish their class or just to hang out!