Fashion & Beauty

A Foursome at the Smithsonian Craft Show

April 25, 2017


ONE HUNDRED AND twenty talented artists will be showing their wares at the Smithsonian Craft Show, which kicks off tonight and continues through Sunday.

Here’s a short peek into the work of four artists we’re looking forward to seeing.

Left: Heartbreak Hotel platter from Adam Paulek; right, Sang Jong Park’s stoneware and porcelain Plate Set with Stand.


Who doesn’t love Adam Paulek’s whimsical work, a happy marriage of form and imagery in ceramics.  The form is functional; the images come from his own snapshots — a background tree, leaf, body part, or sign.  Viewers/users are encouraged to make their own subjective interpretation, with the meaning of individual images and story lines changing over time. “My hope,” says Paulek, “is to elicit an ongoing sense of surprise and foster an evolving relationship with the piece.”

As a student, ceramicist Sang Joon Park didn’t know how to appreciate his beautifully designed bowls.  Today he understands them as a means to find real art in everyday life. According to Park, most of us are constantly searching for new joy and forget to appreciate what we have. Park believes that every person who comes in contact/uses any of his designs changes the work into a whole new piece of art.

Chungie Lee uses new silk to create her delicate, diaphanous versions of the traditional long-sleeved Korean overcoat.

Fashion designer, author and professor Chunghie Lee creates her fabulously colorful, wearable textiles using the ancient craft of bojagi—salvaged scraps of cloth patched together for household use.  What resonates with Lee is that the practitioners (peasant women) of historical bojagi were anonymous; their lives were restricted and their only pleasure may have come from making these cloths. Each of Lee’s brightly colored silk patches represents the freedom of choice that the nameless women of the past did not get to experience.

What’s better than one Dianne Nordt blanket? A stack of them.


We take cover under blankets in the winter by a fire; in the spring and summer, we lay picnics on them.  But unlike most blankets, Dianne Nordt‘s are made of wool from merino sheep on her farm in Charles City, Virginia. She uses that wool to hand weave blankets in her home studio, combining the naturally colored fleece with her own naturally hand-dyed colors. Moreover, each Nordt Family Farm produced blanket is numbered, dated and hemmed by hand.

—Janet Kelly

The Smithsonian Craft Show will be at the National Building Museum, 401 F Street NW, Washington, DC. For more info about tickets, go here


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