MATTIE Art Center and the Friends of Hyde County’s Historic Courthouse hosted a full house of supporters Thursday evening in celebration of the opening of their new Down Draft Studio. Contributors to this project as well as prior projects, instructors, students and well wishers enjoyed a large spread of hors d’oeurvres, refreshments, and fellowship and toured the new studio. Cathy Clayton of Ponzer, MATTIE Arts’ wood burning instructor, unveiled her fittingly hand crafted wood placard dedicating the studio to Art and Alice Keeney as well a second placard honoring the other contributors to the project: Ag Carolina Farm Credit (Swan Quarter), Billi Cahoon (Swan Quarter), Bryan Funeral Services (Swan Quarter),Chris Blancard (Engelhard), Colonial Cabinetry (Summerville, SC), Gibbs Hardware LLC (Engelhard), Hyde County Farm Bureau (Swan Quarter), Murals by Carol Lynn (Engelhard), Rose Acre Farms (Ponzer), Tideland EMC (Pantego), and Southern Bank and Trust (Belhaven).
The Down Draft Studio addition is a 6 station, respiratory friendly space for the teaching of crafts that create dust particulate. Each station contains a dust port which drafts the dust through duct work to a central 1 micron dust collection filter. Any dust that escapes the dust ports and becomes air borne is treated- also to 1 micron- by an overhead air filter. Along 21 feet of butcher block counter top, the equipment at each station includes shelving, dremel with flex wand, gourd saw, and woodburning tools with attachments and various bits for each tool, personal safety equipment, and under shelf lighting and hangers. On tap for teaching in the new studio are Jimmie Huggins (walnut power carving), Cathy Clayton (woodburning), Jessie Credle (glass etching), Mary Jean Gibbs (gourd art), and Gregory Berry (waterfowl carving). The first workshops are scheduled for August 10-23 with Jimmie Huggins teaching the basics of using the dremel tool and advancing into jointless chain link bracelets and necklaces made out of walnut.
To see pictures from the event, click Here.