Center for Craft 25th anniversary logo in red

Current Exhibition

UPcoming Exhibition

past Exhibition

On View 

Crafting Denim

Crafting Denim

On view

Feb

17

Oct

21

Through

Feb

17

Oct

21

When

Feb 17, 2023

Oct 21, 2023

Photo credit:

Photograph by Bowery Blue Makers

Current Exhibition

UPcoming Exhibition

past Exhibition

On View 

Crafting Denim

On view

Feb

17

Oct

21

Through

Feb

17

Oct

21

When

Feb 17, 2023

Oct 21, 2023

Photo credit:

Photograph by Bowery Blue Makers

Current Exhibition

UPcoming Exhibition

past Exhibition

On View 

Crafting Denim

On view

Feb

17

Oct

21

Through

Feb

17

Oct

21

When

Feb 17, 2023

Oct 21, 2023

Photo credit:

Photograph by Bowery Blue Makers

FRONT & CENTER

Front & center

Jeans – with their standardized pockets, rivets, and denim – are so much a part of everyday wardrobes that they are easy to overlook. Yet, in workshops across the nation, independent makers are reevaluating the garment and creating jeans by hand, using antiquated equipment and denim woven on midcentury looms. Crafting Denim explores how and why jeans have come to exist at the intersections of industry and craft, modernity, and tradition. 

A product of industrial factory production for over a century, jeans are being recast by a new cohort of small-scale makers including craftspeople like Ryan Martin of W.H. Ranch Dungarees, Takayuki Echigoya of Bowery Blue Makers, and Sarah Yarborough and Victor Lytvinenko of Raleigh Denim, who favor choice materials and small-batch fabrication. The jeans they make merge craft traditions with industry and extend the conversation between hand and machine. 

Each maker creates a distinctive product but shares a deep appreciation for materials, tools, history, and denim. These jeans are in dialogue with the past and in line with contemporary interests in sustainability. The small workshops featured here are sites of innovation and preservation, and visitors are invited to take a close look at an everyday item and imagine alternative contexts for making and living in our own clothes. 

This exhibition was developed as part of the 2023 Center for Craft Curatorial Fellowship. This program was created in 2017 to provide emerging curators with a platform to explore and test new ideas about craft. Each curator receives an honorarium, access to professional development tools, mentoring, and the opportunity to work closely with the other Curatorial Fellows and Center for Craft staff to produce their exhibition, develop educational materials, design an exhibition catalog, and deliver a curatorial talk.

SUPPORT

No items found.
No items found.
No items found.

OPENING RECEPTION

,

,

Where

John Cram Gallery

67 Broadway St., Asheville, NC, 28801

ARTISTS

Takayuki Echigoya (Bowery Blue Makers)

Ryan Martin (W.H. Ranch Dungarees)

Sarah Yarborough & Victor Lytvinenko

CURATed By

Sonya Abrego

Exhibition management BY

Sarah Darro, Lisette Gallaher, and Marilyn Zapf 

Installation by

Ian Brownlee, Carrie Helmkamp, Lauren Roquemore, and Devyn Vasquez

Exhibition design

Edited by

Mentorship by

Michelle Millar Fisher

Special thanks to

Justin Gordon and Andrea Metivier

Graphic Design by

Kristi Pfeffer

Photography by

exhibition events

The events for this exhibition have passed. See our full calendar for upcoming events.

Meet the artists

ᏚᏍᏓᏯᎫᎾᏱ Gabriel Crow

Cherokee, NC

Faye Junaluska

Cherokee, NC

Lucille Lossiah

Ramon Lose

Cullowhee, NC

ᏯᏗ ᎺᏂ Betty Maney

Cherokee, NC

ᏗᎳᏂ Dylan Morgan

Cherokee, NC

ᎺᎵ ᏔᎻᏏᏂ Mary W. Thompson

ᏎᎳᏂ ᏔᎻᏏᏂ Sarah Thompson

Patricia Welch

Field Building

about the artists

Photo credit: Jamie Hopper

Takayuki Echigoya (Bowery Blue Makers)

Photo credit: Jamie Hopper

Ryan Martin (W.H. Ranch Dungarees)

Photo credit: Jamie Hopper

Sarah Yarborough & Victor Lytvinenko

about the curator

Photo Credit: Lauren Krohn

Dr. Sonya Abrego

she/her

Dr. Sonya Abrego is a New York City-based design historian specializing in American fashion. She takes an interdisciplinary approach to examining the interconnections between dress, popular culture, art, craft, and design. Sonya has published in scholarly and popular venues, has presented at conferences across North America, and presently teaches at Parsons School of Design and the Fashion Institute of Technology. Her first book, Westernwear: Postwar American Fashion and Culture, is published with Bloomsbury Academic.

exhibition Images

exhibition Images

Crafting Denim

is

curated

by

2023

Curatorial

Fellow

Sonya Abrego

and

organized

by

the

Center

for

Craft.

The 2023 Curatorial Fellowship is supported, in part, by the Stoney Lamar Craft Endowment Fund.

Thank you to Phillips, the leading auction house in art and design, for sponsoring the Curatorial Fellowship show.

The

Center

for

Craft

is

supported

in

part

by

the

,

a

division

of

the

Department

of

Natural

and

Cultural

Resources.

This

exhibition

is

supported

in

part

by

the

the

and

For a full listing of the generous funders supporting the Center for Craft and our programming visit centerforcraft.org/support

This

exhibition

is

supported

in

part

by

the

the

and

the

a

division

of

the

Department

of

Natural

and

Cultural

Resources.

For a full listing of the generous funders supporting the Center for Craft and our programming visit centerforcraft.org/support

The

Center

for

Craft’s

John

Cram

Partner

Gallery

presented

in

collaboration

with

UNC Asheville transforms lives through leadership and education. The designated liberal arts and sciences institution for the UNC System and one of the nation’s top 10 public liberal arts universities, UNC Asheville enrolls 3,600 students and offers more than 30 undergraduate majors and a Master of Liberal Arts and Sciences degree. UNC Asheville also encourages students to take part in a nationally acclaimed undergraduate research program and participate in interdisciplinary learning. From internships and hands-on projects, to study abroad and community engagement, students experience an education that extends beyond campus into the vibrant City of Asheville, the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains and the world.

and

A liberal arts college grounded in social responsibility, where hard work and community are more than just words.

.

This

exhibition

is

supported

in

part

by

the

the

and

For a full listing of the generous funders supporting the Center for Craft and our programming visit centerforcraft.org/support

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