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It goes without saying that 2017 was a remarkable year for Houston. From Hurricane Harvey to the Astros winning the World Series, it was an historic year, without mentioning the highs and lows for the nation as a whole. Here, at Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, we look back on last year with equal parts elation and wistfulness, but most of all with gratitude to you, our many supporters, collaborators, visitors, and enthusiasts.
Thank you to everyone—individuals and organizations included—who provided support to HCCC last year. Your contributions have been invaluable to our efforts, and, with your help, we continue to make Houston among the most exciting places for contemporary craft in the country. In particular, we wish to thank everyone who contributed to our recent annual fund. A gift to the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft—whether made as part of last year’s drive or today—ensures our ability to support the work of contemporary craftspeople and make accessible their work to all audiences.
In 2017, We opened 11 exhibitions, with shows ranging from celebrations of the best of contemporary craft, such as Edward Eberle Retrospective or Storyline: The Contemporary Quilt, to those that pushed the definition of craft, including For Hire: Contemporary Sign Painting in America and The Sound of Things. Exhibitions like United by Hand: Work and Service by Alicia Dietz, Drew Cameron, and Ehren Tool and Annie Evelyn: Multiple Impressions encouraged visitors to get involved, or even get in touch, with the art on view. We expanded our educational programming, bringing fresh energy to our monthly Hands-on Houston programs; initiated Craft Social, a new evening program for visitors of all ages; and reintroduced a series of master workshops in disciplines such as life drawing and contemporary calligraphy. And, we welcomed many wonderful resident artists from across the country, even as we had to say goodbye to some of the previous artists, with whom we had grown close.
Last year was filled with exciting developments at HCCC, and 2018 promises more of the same. Expect to see the Center continue to challenge and inspire through exhibitions, programs, and events. This year will see the implementation of the first initiatives of our new strategic plan, written in 2017 to guide our growth over the next three years. If you haven’t been to the Center in a while, I hope you will join us and experience the exciting work we are doing. We remain open and free to the public, and we encourage everyone to experience craft in a novel way.
Please join us for our Winter/Spring Opening Reception on Friday, February 9, 5:30 – 8:00 PM. We’ll be celebrating our upcoming exhibitions, Light Charmer: Neon and Plasma in Action, with live performances in the Main Galleries, and Treachery of Material: The Surrealist Impulse in Craft, in the Artist Hall. The evening will also feature open studios by the current resident artists.
In the meantime, we’d love to get your feedback in this brief survey, to hear what you like best about HCCC, how you would like to hear from us (and how often), and any other comments you may have that could help us to better serve your needs and interests. The survey will take less than five minutes to complete, and you’ll have the opportunity to enter a drawing to receive a $50 gift certificate from Asher Gallery.
Thanks again for your support, and we look forward to seeing you soon!
—Perry Allen Price, Executive Director