Craft class in largest craft show in the country

FEBRUARY 27, 2013

For the first time, the American Craft Council asked VCU to set up a booth at their show in Baltimore. The largest craft show in the U.S., the ACC has arranged a three-year plan that allows VCUarts to set up a stand at the show.

The students traveled to Baltimore from Feb. 22  to Feb. 24 for the craft show. The ACC show provided students not only the opportunity to display and sell their work, but also to make connections with other artists.

“We were able to make connections with artists that already have their hands in the crafts community,” said Lizzy Molinari, a senior craft student. “It was an all-around great opportunity to see how much goes into making the booths for a show and the need for proper preparation.”

For selection of materials to show in the booth, the VCU crafts department accepted submissions from all craft majors or minors, as well as alumni and students from other majors, such as sculpture and extended media.

After some deliberation, they selected what pieces will be on display at the event. Some students in the class, which is instructed by Christopher McElroy, an adjunct faculty member specializing in glass, showed their work in Baltimore.

The class, which is a two-semester course, began preparation for the booth during the fall semester. On Feb. 14, McElroy and his class began work on the structure of their booth, which was composed of a corner wall about 15 feet long and 10 feet wide, with a small outrigger corner piece to serve as the register for the event.

“We knew that two sides would be open,” McElroy said. “Some spaces are not open and will have three walls. …Really, we get more exposure because of two aisles going past.”

McElroy and his students set up the stand in one of the Critique Rooms of the Fine Arts Building. The class used an iPad to serve as both a cash register and promotional tool, as it displayed pictures of all the students’ work in Baltimore.

This article was originally featured in The Commonwealth Times.

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