Folk Art Guild Craft Weekend

The Folk Art Guild has an exciting line up of Craft Weekend classes for all ages, which is set for 6PM Thursday evening July 12th through 3PM, July 15th. Fifteen hours of intensive study in Pottery, Theater, Filmmaking, Rustic Furniture Building, Weaving, Poetry, and Natural Dyeing will be guided by experienced Guild members and local experts. Online registration and visual images of the workshops are available at folkartguild.org/craftweekend. Alternatively, email to [email protected], or phone to 585 944-3153.

There is lodging and camping onsite at the beautiful East Hill Farm home of the Guild, and delicious home-cooked meals prepared by a Brooklyn chef spice up these days. Some people return year after year to reconnect with teachers and classmates and spend a stimulating, creative long weekend with others. Parents come with children, some young, some in high school, to find quality family time together.

The Craft Weekend is a great value. All of these options include tuition: the complete package, all meals and lodging for three nights and four days is only $495. The camping package, with all meals, is $395, the commuter (day) package with three lunches is $305.

Participants in the Rustic Furniture class will join legendary woodsman Marty Dodge and learn to make natural furniture from start to finish. Following a session on the maintenance and techniques to use a variety of woodworking hand tools, students will process red oak and white ash logs harvested from the Folk Art Guild forests into planks and leg stock. Tools will include crosscut saws, hewing axes, hatchets, wedges, mallets, beetles, froes, and draw shaves. This material will be assembled into benches, chairs and tables using axes, draw shaves, chisels, and hand drills.

New this year is a natural dyeing class led by Sara and Michael Burnett. Students will be guided to dye scarves using a variety of natural coloring materials, including indigo and osage orange. The magic transfer of color to fabric is always awe-inspiring, and these secrets will be shared!

Film maker Jim Lemkin says this about the Film Making class: “With little more than your smartphone and a laptop you can create an effective, engaging film that people will want to watch. In this fun, highly practical and empowering filmmaking experience you will learn how. This workshop is for all ages and levels of experience. ”

“While there is some emphasis on the documentary form, you will also explore different ways of using video to express yourself. You may want to tell a story, record history, promote an idea or product, move your social mission forward, change political discourse, or simply explore the worlds of visual imagery or visual storytelling. You will learn how to get the most from your smartphone or video camera, learn to interview, compose, frame, light, record sound and do basic editing.”

Studying theater and role playing is always a path of self-discovery. The questions to explore in this class are:


Workshop participants will explore exercises, improvisations, scenes, characters, and texts, particularly ones that have meaning and interest for you. ‘What does it mean to play a role?’ Prepare a scene or two that fascinate you as a starting point and we’ll take a journey together for a few days. You may never be the same. Open to all levels of experience. Recommended for 14 and older.

The Weaving class offers a unique opportunity to create pieces of art using a loom and a variety of yarns. Beginners will learn how to plan a project from start to finish. Students must incorporate the concepts of color, texture, pattern, and size in order to plan each project. They will wind a warp, dress the loom, and of course, weave. The emphasis of the course is learning by doing. Most students will by weaving on the loom by the end of the first day. Master weaver Truus Radin will be available at all times for consultation and encouragement. Come learn this traditional, important, and imaginative craft!

The Guild potters, Annie Schliffer and Claire Willis are welcoming those who want to play with mud to come explore all aspects of clay in the first craft studio established at the Guild. We will begin with exercises that breakdown barriers and open up the creative possibilities of pottery. Then students will have the opportunity to throw on the wheel, sculpt, hand-build, and more, under the guidance of experienced potters. We will also explore primitive firing techniques, so that you can witness and take part in the creation of a pot from start to finish. A great class for beginners and seasoned potters alike.

Here is what the leader of the Poetry Class, Kate Sorbara, has to say by way of invitation:

“The soul is still alive and will bubble up again among friends.”

Those who join this class will have the opportunity to write and read, attending closely to the sensory details of the farm environment and its richness. No prior experience in poetry or writing is required.

Time to sign up for these great classes before they fill!

This project is made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by Finger Lakes Community Arts Grants.

About the Rochester Folk Art Guild
A not-for-profit arts community and educational institution, the Guild began its work in crafts more than 60 years ago. Located on a 350-acre farm in New York’s Finger Lakes Region, the Guild has grown to receive worldwide recognition for its handcrafts, which have found their place in museums, private collections, shops, and galleries through the United States and abroad. The Guild also offers workshops for adults and conducts educational outreach programs for children. Its Apprenticeship Program is designed for young people who are searching for a practical, hands-on approach to learning and living. Working alongside experienced master craftspeople, apprentices learn proficiency in a craft and how to live alongside others in a community setting. For more information, visit www.folkartguild.org or call 585-554-3539.

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