By: Tom Musgrave
Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday have passed, but that doesn’t mean you’ve missed an opportunity to find the perfect gifts for your friends and family.
The Kentucky Arts Council has launched its annual Give a Gift Made in Kentucky campaign on its website and social media. Artists whose works and events are part of the 2016 campaign are members of the Kentucky Crafted, Performing Artists or Architectural Artists directories, or they are Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowship recipients.
In addition to artists in those directories, the Give a Gift campaign has been expanded to include holiday events hosted by Kentucky Arts Partnership organizations.
The Give a Gift section of the website is a great place to find Kentucky-made art and craft, recordings or tickets to events.
Artists who chose to participate in Give a Gift find inspiration from their Kentucky surroundings and communities.
“Since I arrived in Kentucky in 2001, I found far more opportunities than were available to me previously – I can honestly say my artwork and art career have grown exponentially ever since,” said Bruce Frank, a Kentucky Crafted artist living in Georgetown. “A large part of this was my early involvement with the Kentucky Arts Council and its many educational and exhibition opportunities.”
“My current body of work could not exist outside of Kentucky,” said Berea artist Laura Poulette. “My painting process begins with a walk in the woods and meadows surrounding my Madison County home.”
Work by artists in the arts council’s Kentucky Crafted program is represented not only in their own studios, but also in the shops of 28 Kentucky Crafted Retailers in Kentucky, Missouri and Ohio. Kentucky Crafted Retailers offer a wide variety of merchandise and actively promote the Kentucky Crafted brand. It’s a distinction available to gift shops, galleries and other businesses that sell art and craft. If you own a business and are interested in becoming a Kentucky Crafted Retailer, contact Dave Blevins, the arts council’s arts marketing director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (502) 892-3120.
Tom Musgrave is communications director of the Kentucky Arts Council.