Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to announce that six new members have joined their board of directors. The team has eagerly welcomed Isabelle Asakura, Porshae’ Brown, Mona Elamin, Mariela Poleo, Priya Ramkisson, and Bob Schwartz.
Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to announce its newest class of residents for 2023 – 2024, a group of 11 outstanding local, national, and international artists working in craft media.
For more than 20 years, the Center’s artist residency program has offered time and space for craft artists to focus on their creative work and interact with the public. The program supports emerging, mid-career, and established artists working in all craft media, including but not limited to clay, fiber, glass, metal, wood and mixed media. Residents are required to have their studios open for at least two days each week, giving visitors the unique opportunity to walk in, ask questions, and watch them work. This deeper level of interaction between artists and visitors allows the public to learn about a range of craft processes and techniques and helps artists to gain exposure, make connections within the Houston community, and educate people of all ages about craft.
Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to present Max Adrian: RIPSTOP, a solo exhibition of patchwork textiles and inflatable sculptures by the Ohio-based fiber artist. Adrian’s volumetric, pneumatic work transports viewers into a realm of artifice, desire, and worldbuilding. Drawing from rich legacies of queer fiber art and theory, including the AIDS memorial quilt and José Esteban Muñoz’s foundational text, Cruising Utopia, the exhibition features monumentally scaled works that physically respond to the presence of viewers by filling with air. “The sculptures’ constant state of performing, or becoming, reflects Adrian’s interests in queerness as an inherently utopian and future-oriented mode of being,” says Sarah Darro, Curator and Exhibitions Director at HCCC.
Tree of Life showcases sculptural objects made from the African blackwood tree, also known as mpingo or Dalbergia melanoxylon. Native to Tanzania and the territory surrounding Mt. Kilimanjaro, this tree has a naturally dark, nearly black, colored core and other unique properties that make it a preferred choice of material for ornamental turning, carving, and use in woodwind instruments. This exhibition features figural sculptures carved in the Makonde tradition by Tanzania-based artists, Joseph Singombe and Pius Mtembe; ornamental turning by the late Texas-based artist James Harris; and woodwind instruments that explore the different methods artists are using when approaching this material.
Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to present In Residence: 16th Edition, an annual exhibition celebrating the Center’s Artist Residency Program, which has supported artists working in the field of craft for more than two decades. The show, which will run in a longer term format than previous years, features works in fiber, clay, and wood, as well as raw and recycled materials, by 2022-2023 resident artists Bennie Flores Ansell, Margot Becker, Felicia Francine Dean, Juan Carlos Escobedo, Ian Gerson, Miles Lawton Gracey, Guadalupe Hernandez, Yeonsoo Kim, Shradha Kochhar, Lakea Shepard, and Rebekah Sweda.
The Board of Directors of Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to announce that Leila Cartier will be the Center’s executive director beginning July 17th. Her appointment follows her role as executive director of CraftNOW Philadelphia, an organization uniting institutions, scholars, and artists to promote the role of the city in the fields of craft and making.
Cartier brings a wealth of strategic and administrative leadership experience to HCCC, as well as a deep understanding of and connections in the world of contemporary craft. During her tenure at CraftNOW, she directed an annual portfolio of activities, featuring Philadelphia’s most renowned arts institutions; formed key partnerships; and developed a series of programs focused on economic opportunity through craft. Her work fortified the organization’s original mission, substantially expanded its range, and positioned it prominently within the city’s and nation’s cultural landscapes. Previously, she served as the director of exhibitions at the William King Museum of Art, located in her hometown of Abingdon, Virginia.
This summer, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) presents Layla Klinger: Hot House, featuring contemporary lace creations and larger-than-life electroluminescent installations by the Brooklyn-based fiber artist, Layla Klinger. Born in Tel Aviv, Klinger (they/them) works with fiber, light and electric currents to investigate intimacy, erotic compulsions, and beauty as merit.
This summer, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft is pleased to present Gabo Martinez: The Land of Flowers, an exhibition of ceramics and printmaking named for the mythical, flower-filled paradise, known in Nahuatl as xochitlalpan. Influenced by her upbringing in Guanajuato, Mexico, and Texas, Martinez’s vibrant work centers a reclamation of indigenous identity through craft production, using materials and motifs with ties to prehispanic cultures. Her vividly glazed terracotta vessels and large-scale prints are inscribed with motifs like the flower, a deeply significant symbol in the poetic tradition of Nahuatl speakers, known as In xochitl In cuicatl (Flower and Song).
Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) is pleased to present Tg: Transitions in Kiln-Glass, a biennial exhibition organized by Bullseye Projects that features the best of contemporary kiln-glass design, architecture, and art. The juried competition and resulting exhibition reflects the expansion and evolution of the kiln-glass medium and its community. While still encouraging emerging talent, the parameters for this year’s exhibition have been widened to include a broader range of artists and to acknowledge the expansion of kiln-glass into the architectural and design fields.
This spring, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft (HCCC) presents Philippine-Made: The Work of Matt Manalo, an exhibition of self-reflective sculptures made from air-dry clay, bamboo, and plant materials with cultural ties to Matt Manalo’s home country of the Philippines. Born in Manila, Manalo has spent half his life in America, an experience that has served as a pivotal point of inflection for the artist. The exhibition encapsulates his time living in the United States after immigrating with his family to Houston.