A series of traditional arts and crafts classes for adults at the Doak House Museum is providing a doorway into the rich Appalachian cultural heritage of this region.
The Doak House Museum on the Tusculum College campus is offering a series of classes called “Crafting Appalachia, 2011.” The four offerings include classes in broom making, ballad singing, 19th century art techniques and basket weaving. The series has been made possible in part by a generous two-year grant from the East Tennessee Foundation’s Arts Fund for East Tennessee.
The first in the series, a basket weaving class for beginners, was held this past week. Taught by Darlene “Honey” McCleish, participants finished two baskets and were able to take a third project home. “It was exciting to see all the new faces learning an old-time craft,” said Leah Walker, site manager of the Doak House Museum.
Broom Making will be the next class. Led by local artisan Keith Bowman, the class will be offered from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on three consecutive Saturdays in August – Aug. 6, 13 and 20. Class members will finish seven brooms over the three days. The $55 class fee covers all materials and instruction.
Renowned storytellers and balladeers Sheila Kay Adams and Judy Rhodes will teach “Ballad Singing: Storytelling through Song” on Sept. 9 and 10. Adams has been a featured teller numerous times at the National Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough and is a keeper of the old-time song traditions of the mountains. Rhodes is an accomplished musician and performer who teaches voice and piano and is constantly seeking to explore new expressions of music, song and story.
The series will conclude with a class in 19th century art techniques, focusing on papier mache sculpture. All artistic skill levels are welcome in this class. Dates for this class have not been set and will be announced at a later time.
Class sizes are limited. To make a reservation or find out more information, please call Walker at 4723-636-8554 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Doak House Museum and the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library are operated by the Department of Museum Program and Studies of Tusculum College. In addition to the museums, the department is responsible for the College Archives and offers one of the few undergraduate Museum Studies degree programs in the country. The two museums are also part of the National Historic District on the Tusculum College campus. Follow the museums on Facebook and Twitter to learn the latest news and upcoming events or visit its Web site at www.tusculum.edu/museums to learn more about the variety of programs offered at the museums.