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KEY Oklahoma City

Visitors to the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum can experience “CRAFT IN AMERICA: Expanding Traditions,” which runs through January 18, 2009. The Museum is one of only seven stops in the multicity tour for this exhibition showcasing scores of exciting and important examples of American creativity.

CRAFT IN AMERICA has become a national phenomenon, comprising the nationally touring exhibition, a lavishly illustrated book, a three-part PBS television series and the most comprehensive Web site of its kind. In conjunction with the exhibition at the National Cowboy Museum, OETA will rebroadcast the three-part documentary series on November 9, 23 and 30, 2008, at 1:00 p.m. The PBS documentaries are double Emmy nominated and Peabody Award-winning.

“There is an extraordinary wealth of objects that mean so much to who we are as a nation, part of our living heritage, that are often hiding in plain sight,” says Carol Sauvion, executive director of CRAFT IN AMERICA. She adds examples including “everything from the iconic Revere bowl, to a freeform Sam Maloof rocking chair, to a quilt that’s been passed down in your family from generation to generation.”

A Los Angeles-based nonprofit organization, CRAFT IN AMERICA Inc. pursues its mission to promote and advance original handcrafted work, through educational programs in all media. “CRAFT IN AMERICA: Expanding Traditions” celebrates these works of art and recognizes them as important pieces of history linking us to the very essence of American culture.

Before the advent of widespread mechanization and the digital age, all members of given communities were craftspeople. Everything that was necessary for life—clothing, tools, and home furnishings—was made by hand. Appreciating these objects can help more fully understand our history as Americans. As former President Jimmy Carter says in the Prologue to the book Craft in America, “Craft recognizes and communicates so much about what we are as a country. It is our identity and our legacy.”

The Museum Store at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum has available DVDs of the “CRAFT IN AMERICA” documentary and the book Craft in America: Celebrating Two Centuries of Artists and Objects. During the exhibition, the store will carry works from some of the artists featured in the exhibition including baskets, jewelry and art tiles. Items may be purchased in store or online.

Nationally accredited, the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is located in Oklahoma City’s Adventure District at the junction of I-44 and I-35. For more info, visit www.nationalcowboymuseum.org or (405) 478-2250. The Museum is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 with the exception of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.





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