WPCC Students and Faculty Participate in Burke Arts Council Exhibition


Photo of professional crafts wood students and instructor at the art gallery. May 17, 2018 – Students and faculty from Western Piedmont Community College’s professional crafts wood program recently participated in the Burke Arts Council’s 13th Annual Woodworking exhibition held at the Jailhouse Gallery located in Downtown Morganton.  Students and faculty displayed several unique items including chairs, dressers, tables, wood turned items and items cut using a CNC router.

John Ferguson, WPCC’s woodworking instructor and advisor curated this year’s exhibition.

“For our students, the annual woodworking exhibit evokes the realities of designing on a deadline, building and being ready for an exhibition,” said Ferguson.  “We are really proud of our students and the work they have produced, so we look forward to the opportunity to celebrate them in the community”

The college’s professional crafts wood curriculum develops individuals with traditional values of fine craftsmanship, creative design, and an entrepreneurial spirit for a small woodworking enterprise. The coursework includes a strong emphasis on creative thinking and problem solving.

Students also work in teams to learn how to best to apply CNC router and machining technology to the traditional woodworking discipline.

“This technology is fast becoming a necessary workhorse in woodshops of all sizes,” said Ferguson.  “Our goal is insure graduates are capable of blending historical and modern methods of woodworking to operate a viable small business one day or become an asset to an existing one.”

Upon completion of required coursework, graduates may earn a degree, diploma or certificate.

In addition to handmade wood items, the college’s pottery students and faculty exhibited in the council’s adjacent, “cell” gallery.  These students showcased a collection of wheel thrown and hand-built drinking vessels and bowls.  Students work in an array of styles, shapes, and surface treatments dependent on their personal research and aesthetic.

For more information about WPCC’s professional crafts wood program and courses, contact Courtney Long, professional crafts program coordinator at 828-448-3552 or clong@wpcc.edu or visit www.wpcc.edu/crafts.

Western Piedmont Community College is located in the rolling foothills of picturesque Morganton, N.C. and proudly serves the local area by providing accessible, high-quality education that improves lives and promotes growth in the community. The college is one of only five colleges in the North Carolina Community College System achieving an “excellence” level in four of seven mandated performance measures and is guided by the College’s five-year strategic plan focusing on student success, employee development, workforce development, community engagement, and institutional enhancement.   For more information, visit www.wpcc.edu or provide feedback to the College by visiting www.wpcc.edu/feedback.

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Atticus Simpson