Craft Marketing Program
2005 Craft Organization Development Association Conference Hosted By Kentucky
The Kentucky Craft Marketing Program, a division of the Kentucky Arts Council in the Commerce Cabinet, the Kentucky School of Craft, and the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea hosted the 2005 national conference of the Craft Organization Development Association (CODA). Sponsors included the Applachian Regional Commission, Kentucky Craft Marketing Program, Brown-Forman Corporation, and Berea College. The conference title, “Building Communities: Partnerships in Craft” focused on creative approaches to diversifing local economies and creating jobs. Special assistance was provided by the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen and the Berea Arts Council.
Conference activities were held June 2-5 on the campus of Berea College, at the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea, Hindman (at the Knott County Branch of the Hazard Community and Technical College), and the Kentucky School of Craft. There were 130 participants from 23 states that attended from such places as the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft in Texas, The Society of Arts and Craft in Boston, The American Association of Woodturners of St. Paul, Minnesota, Arrowmont School of Crafts in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, The American Craft Council in New York City, Louisiana Crafts Marketing in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and the Contemporary Crafts Museum in Portland, Oregon to name a few.
Friday morning Robert Lynch, President and CEO of Americans for the Arts presented, “America at a Cultural Crssroads: Craft and Community in the 21st Century”, in the opening keynote address. Three concurrent panel sessions focused on the themes of tourism, community development, and the business of art. These sessions showcased several recent Kentucky craft initiatives as case studies and learning tools for issues affecting a wide range of craft organizations and other groups that support artists. The cities of Louisville, Paducah, and Berea and projects such as Glassworks, the Paducah Artists Relocation Program, and the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea served as good examples generating discussions on partnerships in craft that build communities. Organizations learned about national tourism trends and current issues in the business of art that affect their programming for artists. Panelists brought to life the impact on tourism of such projects as the Kentucky Artisan Heritage Trails and the use of a Community Scholars program to enhance local festivals on local traditions and culture.
On Saturday, conference attendees traveled by bus to Hindman, in Knott County. Knott County, through it’s Commuity Development Initiative has identified an artisan based economy as a mechanism for local growth. Presentations and site visits were made to the Kentucky School of Craft and the Kentucky Applachian Artisan Center. Phil Psilos, Director of Economic Development Programs, Regional Technology Strategies in Carrboro, North Carolina, presented “Education for the Creative Economy-A Global Perspective”. A forum on “New Issues In Craft Education” included panelists Steve Loar; Director of the Center for Turning and Furniture Design, Indiana University (Indiana, Pennsylvania); Gary Clontz, Haywood Community College; and Paula Owens, Director of the Southwest School of Art and Craft. Peer groups education discussions were held prior to a tour of the facilities at the Kentucky School of Craft ending with live music and dinner at the school.
The conference ended on Sunday with a board of directors meeting and next year’s conference will be held in Portland Oregon.
“The programs were full of great information and the round table discussions introduced me to a whole new set of variables for improving Arts Business Institute .You have created a tremendous organization”, said Marilyn Ulen, Executive Director, Arts Business Institute, St. Petersburg, Florida.
The state of Kentucky brought unique qualifications as the 2005 CODA Conference host. Kentucky’s public and private craft programming is recognized and modeled nationally, including several new projects implemented in the past few years. These efforts have resulted from a strong cooperative network and partnerships that have built on past successes to promote collaboration in the development of new programming. Kentucky has also shown a long-term leadership commitment to CODA and its work to develop craft organizations.
Fran Redmon, director of the Craft Marketing Program, a division of the Kentucky Arts Council in the Kentucky Commerce Cabinet, served as conference chair. Tim Glotzbach, dean and founding director of the Kentucky School of Craft, and Victoria Faoro, executive director of the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea were the conference co-chairs.
The Kentucky Craft Marketing Program is a division of the Kentucky Arts Council. The Kentucky Arts Council and the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea are state agencies in the Commerce Cabinet, Commonwealth of Kentucky. For more information, call 888 KY CRAFT (592-7238), local calls, (502) 564-8076, or visit the Program's web site at www.kycraft.ky.gov.
Since 1981, the Craft Marketing Program's mission is to develop the state's craft industry, support and empower Kentucky artisans and craftspeople, create an economically viable environment for craft entrepreneurs, preserve the state's craft traditions, stimulate and support product development, and generate public awareness, public support and public/private partnerships.
The Program provides assistance to Kentucky residents, individuals, or groups wanting to develop as craft professionals through economic opportunities and training, to other outside entities (e.g., craft retailers, craft and art organizations, community and government agencies), and the general public. The craft industry in Kentucky contributes 252 million dollars in annual sales and Kentucky is recognized as a model state for its craft programs and its role in the $14 billion national craft industry.