A vase by Hideaki Miyamura is one of the items up for auction at the alliance’s Glorious Anniversaries gala. Courtesy of James Renwick Alliance
It will be a big arts and crafts weekend in the city that knows how to celebrate when the James Renwick Alliance brings its Spring Craft Weekend to Washington, D.C., March 23-25.
With “Glorious Anniversaries,” the alliance has a lot to celebrate: its own 30th anniversary plus the 40th anniversary of the opening of the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery
The splashiest event is a gala Saturday night at the historic Willard Hotel, a benefit dinner with live and silent auctions. The auctions feature much-sought-after work by such artists as ceramicists Cliff Lee and Hideaki Miyamura, jeweler Pat Flynn, and metal artist Wendy Stevens. At the dinner, the alliance will present its One-of-a-Kind award to noted collector and benefactor Fleur Bresler.
This year the alliance coordinated events for the same weekend as the 100th National Cherry Blossom Festival. In honor of that, there will be a panel discussion Saturday morning on the Japanese Influence on American Craft, with noted textile designer Jack Lenor Larson, jeweler Donald Friedlich, furniture designer Wendy Maruyama and educator Judith Schwartz.
On Sunday morning, those two educators, along with two others, mixed-media artist Paulus Berensohn and glass artist Stephen Powell, will be honored by the alliance as Distinguished Craft Educators.
The alliance is a non-profit organization that promotes knowledge and appreciation of American craft and provides support for the Smithsonian American Art Museum and its Renwick Gallery. For information, go to www.jra.org or call 301-907-3888.