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Fernwood to Exhibit the Work of Michigan Tile Makers

Fernwood Botanical Garden & Nature Preserve announces Michigan Tile Makers, an exhibit that opens in the Clark Gallery on Friday, July 6, with a wine and cheese reception from 6:30 through 9:30 p.m., Michigan Time.

Participating will be the historic Pewabic Pottery of Detroit; Motawi Tileworks of Ann Arbor; Weaver Tile of Horton; Denison Tiles of Honor; Ziggurat Tiles of Edwardsburg; Ellison Tile of St. Clair Shores; Gretchen Kramp Ceramic Tiles of Royal Oak; and JoAnn Aquinto Ceramics of Eastpointe. Many of the artists are expected to be present at the reception.

This exhibit will showcase the traditional themes of ceramic work done by Michigan Tile Makers in the arts & crafts style of Pewabic Pottery, founded in 1903, as well as the more contemporary styles of JoAnn Aquinto Ceramics and Denison Tiles, and whimsical styles as seen in Gretchen Kramp Tiles. These different styles all include garden themes with cranes, insects, frogs, toads, birds, and more, as well as architectural themes with images of the sun, trees, flowers, and riverscapes, among others. The glazes used are breathtaking. Some, as with Pewabic, are known for iridescent glazes and amazing depth of color. All tiles will be offered for sale.

The purpose of the exhibit is to bring attention to the history and heritage of ceramic tile artists in Michigan that have resulted in numerous working tile studios throughout the state. Practical applications for tiles includes back splashes, floors, and walls, as well as fireplaces, and other decorative uses in homes.

The Tile Heritage Foundation's (THF) Tile Heritage Prize will be awarded to the artist whose tile best reflects the ceramic traditions of North America. Valued at $200, the prize includes a listing of the winning studio in the Tile Heritage Member Gallery, and a free one-year membership to THF also will be given.

The exhibit runs from Tuesday, July 3 through Sunday August 19 at Fernwood.

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