Artisans to share their work at show

BOAZ – In an effort to showcase artistic talents in the Mid-Ohio Valley, the Open Hands Seed Project will host their first Open Hands Galleries Christmas Artisan Show this weekend.

Beginning today, the center will host works from 11 artisans in different mediums, said Mark McCullough with the Open Hands Seed Project.

“I think this is going to be a really interesting event,” McCullough said. “We wanted to do something to showcase the works of several of our people but didn’t want to do a craft show.

“We have nothing against craft shows, but we wanted to do something a bit different and I think we have succeeded,” he said.

From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and Saturday, the Christmas Artisan Show will be open free to the public.

“The artisans we selected to have works in the show, all of them are truly talented,” said McCullough. “Everyone uses different mediums to create their work and it is all really, really good.”

Artisans participating in the event are: La La Land, Rustic Junkie Creative Recycling, Illuminations, Love, Kya Jett, VaGalleria, Nostalgia, Boho Trinkets, Nine Lives Photography and Cartoon Fun with J.D. Williamson.

Joining these artists will be members of the Open Hands Seed Project, which includes their roughly 55 employees who take items removed from old homes such as doors, windows and furniture and encouraged to use their creativity to make these items something new and useful.

The Open Hands Seed Project opened in April 2011 and is a part of the The Mentor Network/REM Community Options. After more than two years in the local community, the organization opened a learning center and gallery.

In August, directors, supporters and members celebrated the grand opening of the Open Hands Gallery and Learning Center, located next to the learning center at 2242 Williams Highway, also known as West Virginia 14 in Boaz, in the small strip mall near Keller Lane.

The Mentor Network/REM Community Options has been in the Parkersburg area since 1999 and is one of the top 25 employers in West Virginia. Their goal is to “plant the seed of having a job that gives self worth to our workers.”

McCullough said organizers for the event hope this first gallery show is a success in order to grow it for next year.

“We are already looking at how we can do this event in the future and make it bigger,” he said. “We want to use this as a way to show off some of the amazingly talented people we have in our local area.”