Sixth Annual Alchemist Picnic • October 4–5, 2019
• Networking • Presentations • Roundtable Discussions • and a Pop-Up Exhibition
Thanks to everyone who attended!
You won’t want to miss Touchstone Center for Craft’s Sixth Annual Alchemist Picnic October 4–5, 2019!
Alchemist Picnic, a metalsmithing retreat held annually at Touchstone Center for Crafts will once again be hosted by noted metalsmith Wayne Werner. This year’s symposium includes an opening keynote by Lindsay Ketterer Gates, Adam Kenney, and Paul Rosenblatt speaking on the topic of ‘Connections for Creative Careers & Opportunities.’
Demonstrations include Tom Muir, Lucy Derickson, Sean MacMillan, and Brian Ferrell. Admission includes great food, conversations, a pop-up exhibition, evening bonfires (weather permitting) & the return of midnight fireside casting with Richard Hoff. All makers, artists, craftspeople, arts organizations, guilds, schools, and universities are invited to attend this memorable event!
2019 will mark the Sixth Annual Alchemist Picnic at Touchstone Center for Crafts!
Join us for a weekend celebrating all things metalsmithing – complete with discussions, presentations, and demonstrations.
Registration includes meals*, lodging may be purchased separately**.
See below for event pricing, including a special student rate.
Admission: All Weekend
Please check back for an updated event schedule.
Friday, Oct. 4, 2019
- 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.: Check-In at Blaney Lodge
- 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Dinner
- 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 pm: Keynote Presentation by Lindsay Ketterer Gates, Adam Kenney, & Paul Rosenblatt – ‘Connections for Creative Careers & Opportunities’
- 8:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.: Welcome, Attendee Pop-up Exhibition and Networking
Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
- 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.: Breakfast
- 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.: Lucy Derickson – ‘Rubber Molds & Casting Pewter’
- 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.: Sean MacMillan – ‘Large Scale Hammer-Forming Tips & Tricks’
- 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.: Lunch
- 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.: Brian Ferrell – ‘Return of the Casual Pewtersmith’
- 3:15 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.: Tom Muir – ‘Solder Seams That Suck – Right Into Place’
- 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Dinner
- 6:45 p.m. – 7:45 p.m.: Panel Discussion (Moderated by Wayne Werner)
- 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.: Bonfire at Fire Circle (weather dependent) including ‘Fireside Casting’ with Glen Gardner
Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019
- 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.: Continental Breakfast
- 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.: Group Q&A
Weekend Session Pricing
Admission Fees (includes meals) per person:
- $125 Student
- $145 Non-Student
Lodging Options (Per Night)**:
- $10 Camping
- $20 Shared Quad Cabin
- $45 Shared Dorm
- $90 Private Dorm
- $60 Private Double Cabin
- $20 Shared Double Cabin
- $50 Linens
* Meals include the following: Friday dinner; Saturday breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Special dietary needs must be given at the time of registration. Individual meals are not available for purchase.
** Lodging prices per night. Campers must bring own tent, bedding, towels, toiletries, etc. and will have access to the bathhouse. All cabin/dorm lodging does not include bedding, towels, toiletries, etc. A linens package is available for $50. Attendees may request to share a room/cabin with a specified attendee. Requests should be given in advance with the understanding that not all requests are guaranteed to be fulfilled.
We have a terrific lineup of presentations and demonstrations in-store!
‘Connections for Creative Careers & Opportunities’
- Lindsay Ketterer Gates, Executive Director at Touchstone Center for Crafts
- Adam Kenney, Director of the Craft Business Accelerator at Bridgeway Capital
- Paul Rosenblatt, Principal, Springboard Design / President at Winchester Thurston School / Founder, Creator Square
Host for the Alchemist Picnic – Wayne Werner
Wayne Werner is a third-generation metalsmith from Baltimore, MD. He has traveled around the world to learn with metal workers from Italy and Egypt to Java and Bali. Specializing in cold-forging precious metals, Werner has incorporated the traditional techniques of gold and platinum smithing with his artistic vision of paying homage to the fertility cults of the ancient world. Primarily making a living retailing his work, Werner has participated in more than 200 high-end craft shows nationally. He has received many awards for his work, including the World Gold Council’s Gold Distinction award and the MJSA Vision award for Mokume Gane. Werner is a former instructor at the Fuji Studio in Florence, Italy, and is an adjunct faculty member at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, MD. In 2006, he was asked to demonstrate his craft at The Mint Museum of Craft and Design in Charlotte, NC.
Tom Muir – ‘Solder Seams That Suck – Right into Place!’
Tom Muir will demonstrate precision soldering and heating strategies for large and small scale works which will be applicable to various formats and approaches to jewelry and metalsmithing.
Bio: Tom Muir is Distinguished Professor of the Arts at Bowling Green State University, where he is head of the Jewelry and Metalsmithing area in the School of Art. He received his MFA from Indiana University, Bloomington, and his BFA degree from Georgia State University in Atlanta. Mr. Muir has lectured and taught widely, holding positions at universities and craft schools around the country. His award-winning work has been published and exhibited extensively in art, craft and design exhibitions. Collections include the Art Institute of Chicago, Renwick Gallery of the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution and The White House Collection of American Crafts, National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. He is the recipient of an Arts Midwest/National Endowment for the Arts Regional Artist Fellowship, Michigan Council for the Arts Fellowship, and numerous Ohio Arts Council Individual Artist Fellowship Awards. In 2009, Tom received the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Ohio Designer Craftsmen for having made a major contribution to craft in Ohio.
Brian Ferrell – ‘Return of the Casual Pewtersmith’
Please check back for demo description.
Bio: Brian Ferrell is an artist who creates one-of-a-kind furniture, tableware, and lighting using a wide variety of materials. His work has been shown in over 50 solo and group exhibitions and has been mentioned in numerous books and publications. He has pieces in private collections in the US, UK, Germany, and Dubai. Ferrell was honored with a solo exhibition at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater during the summer of 2008. He has been a NICHE Award finalist and winner. Beyond exhibiting, Brian has juried several shows including the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts, and Craft Boston. He holds a BFA in jewelry/metals from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and an MFA from the Program in Artisanry at University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth. He is currently Associate Professor of Art at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA. He has been on the Board of Directors for the Society of North American Goldsmiths since 2014 and is currently the president of the organization.
Sean MacMillan – ‘Larger Scale Hammer-Forming Tips & Tricks’
While in graduate school in the early 2000s, Sean experimented heavily with moving larger and larger pieces, and it was very liberating when I began measuring my work in feet instead of inches. This demonstration will highlight major technical concerns when you start working sheets of metal with dimensional widths exceeding 24 in.
Bio: Sean Macmillan earned a Master’s of Fine Arts in Jewelry and Metalsmithing from the University of Kansas in 2005 and a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts Degree from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 2000. His artwork primarily utilizes traditional hammer forming techniques combined with welding/fabrication and enameling. Shortly after earning his MFA he spent a year working as a Metal Spinner, Welder/ Fabricator and Production Bench Jeweler. He is currently serving as the Chairperson of the Slippery Rock Art Department and is an Associate Professor, responsible for teaching all levels of Metalsmithing courses, in addition to 3 Dimensional Design, Basic Drawing, and Basic Sculpture. He has shown his work at numerous national galleries including the Richmond Art Center (Richmond CA), Courthouse Galleries of the Portsmouth City Museums (Norfolk VA), Erie Art Museum (Erie PA), University of Kansas Art and Design Gallery (Lawrence KS), Zaruba and Zaruba Gallery (Baltimore MD), Alice Sabatini Gallery (Topeka KS), and the Craft Alliance (St. Louis MO). Sean has taught numerous visiting metals workshops including workshops at Grand Valley State University in Michigan, California University of Pennsylvania, Murray State University in Kentucky, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, Touchstone Center for Crafts, and the Society for Contemporary Craft. He has authored two technical articles for the Society of North American Goldsmiths and images of his work have been published in 500 Metal Vessels and the Best of New York Artists and Artisans. He currently resides on a three-acre farm in Butler, PA with his wife, two daughters, dog, two cats, and various chickens.
Lucy Derickson – ‘Rubber Molds & Casting Pewter’
Lucy will demonstrate how to create a figurine from found objects, and silicone rubber molds. We will then cast in pewter. Discussion of finishing techniques will include sanding, patination. Carving plaster molds will also be covered.
Bio: Lucy Louise Derickson (Washington, DC) is a metalsmith and educator. She received her BFA in Jewelry/Metalsmithing and Teaching Certification from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and her MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, in Craft and Material Studies. Lucy is currently Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the Jewelry and Metalsmithing/Crafts Area at Montgomery College, Maryland. Lucy is a board member of the non-profit organization Ethical Metalsmiths, where she works as a facilitator to EM Students.
Primitive casting into stone molds is one of the oldest techniques in metalsmithing. In this demonstration, pewter is heated in iron ladles in the hot coals of the Touchstone bonfire. The molten metal is then poured into stone molds to crystallize before your eyes! Everyone will get the chance to participate and take home what they make.