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Chatham Studio Tour is a holiday tradition

Posted Monday, November 23, 2009

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Pittsboro, NC - Art-lovers are feeling a great void these days. Our North Carolina Museum of Art is closed while the world class collection is moved to the new 127,000-square-foot state of art facility. Dan Gottlieb, the museum's Director of Planning and Design, is one of the people shepherding this delicate operation.

According to a New York Times article, the “behind-the-scenes designs [make] it possible to safely transfer invaluable pieces from one building to another as part of the expansion that will cost $73.1 million in public money and $5.5 million in private funds. The work includes a tunnel that connects the two buildings and a hidden, roll-up door that will allow art the size of the massive museum walls to be moved into the new building.”

Dan Gottlieb will take time from this herculean task to serve as judge for the Opening Reception of the 17th Annual Chatham Studio Tour at the Pittsboro Campus of Central Carolina Community College on Friday December 4 from 7 to 9 PM. Gottlieb will judge artworks from more than 50 regionally and nationally recognized artists who live and work in North Carolina’s Chatham County. Members of the Chatham Artists Guild, these painters, sculptors, photographers, potters, and artists working in a variety of media open their studios across scenic rural Chatham County to give visitors from all around the area a first-hand experience with the creative process.

Guild President Forrest Greenslade asserts, “We really appreciate Dan Gottlieb bringing his depth of art world experience to our Opening Reception.” The free reception is open to the public and features one sample work from each artist on The Tour, as well as elegant refreshments created by glass artist and well known “foody” Gretchen Niver. “This is a fantastic party, and the best way for folks to plan their schedules for visiting our artists’ studios all over Chatham County.” Greenslade continues.

A Tour brochure and map is available at many locations, including: Durham Arts Council, Durham; General Store Cafe, Pittsboro; Aria Spa, Chapel Hill; Arts Center, Carrboro; Artspace, Raleigh and Alamance County Arts Council, Graham; NC Arts Incubator, Siler City. Information about The Chatham Studio Tour is available online at

“Our members work all year long, preparing artworks, educational demonstrations, and informational materials so that visitors can enjoy The Tour, and learn more about creating art in the artists’ own environments,” explains Maggie Zwilling, Executive Director of the Chatham Artists Guild. “The Tour is also an important economic event for Chatham County. People stop at restaurants, gas stations and all kinds of businesses while they travel from studio to studio,” she adds.

Seven artist are new to The Tour this year. Emma Skurnick has created nature illustrations for American Scientist Magazine, Brooklyn Botanical Garden, North Carolina Aquariums, and the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. She teaches illustration and design courses at Central Carolina Community College, the ArtsCenter and North Carolina Botanical Garden. In addition to Skurnick, wood furniture maker David Botts, stoneware potter Lara O’Keefe, iron and steel forger Peter Ross, oil and acrylics painter Deborah Sanks, wood turner Michael Thompson and jeweler Mariah Wheeler are new artists participating in the 2009 Tour.

“The Chatham Studio Tour is a holiday tradition here in the heart of North Carolina,” concludes Greenslade. We look forward to welcoming folks from all around into our studios and sharing with them the joy and excitement of creating art.”

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Chatham Studio Tour is a holiday tradition