Heights Arts Holiday Store offers expanded selection and family workshops

Glass piece by Earl James.

The term “shop local” is nothing new for Cleveland Heights. In 2001, a group of arts lovers converted a vacant Lee Road storefront into a pop-up gallery for the holiday season. Heights-area artists and artisans offered works for sale, and the community enthusiastically gathered to purchase local, handmade art and gifts. Heights Arts has been a presence on Lee Road ever since.

This month, Heights Arts celebrates its 13th Annual Holiday Store with an opening reception on Friday, Nov. 7. More than 80 regional artists are represented in the show, with works ranging from industrial-inspired jewelry and clutches created from repurposed paintings to innovative, contemporary glassware. Participating artists also volunteer to staff the gallery during Holiday Store hours, so shoppers can meet them in person and learn more about their work. 

“The Holiday Store is always a great time to celebrate the art being created right here in Northeast Ohio, while giving unique, high-quality gifts to your loved ones, or even yourself!” said Courtney Young, who this fall became Heights Arts’s gallery manager.

This year, Young and the Heights Arts gallery committee have added more than a dozen new makers to the Holiday Store, with one-of-a-kind works in ceramics, paper, leather, silver, glass and watercolor.

Lakewood artist Gina DeSantis creates colorful ceramic pieces for everyday use. She joins other renowned local ceramic artists—William Brouillard, Kristen Cliffel, Yumiko Goto, Bonnie Gordon, Andrea LeBlond, Lynne Lofton, Mark Yasenchak and Carol Sphar—whose works range from function to fantasy.

New works on paper include linocut prints and cards from Jessica Miroglotta, watercolor paintings by Dennis Balogh, photographic prints by Carrie Gabella and handmade paper assortments from the Morgan Art of Papermaking Conservatory. Shoppers can also find prints and paper goods by Christopher Owen Smith, Julie Edberg, CLE Colective, and Zygote Press’s Kate Snow.

Items created from repurposed and upcycled materials are the recurring theme in the work of a number of artists. Patti Fields’ jewelry incorporates vintage, natural and cast-off industrial objects in distinctive bracelets, earrings and necklaces. Krista Tomorowitz creates unique canvas clutches and totes from repurposed paintings. Leather belts and horse tack find new life in Alyssa Woodard’s leather cuffs and accessories.

Besides new artwork, festive family workshops are another addition to the 13th Annual Holiday Store. On select weekends, community members are invited to create hand-stamped greeting cards and gift tags or make a Poetic Paper Pinwheel, which may be used as an ornament or artisanal toy. Reservations are required; visit the Heights Arts website for details.

The gallery continues to present musical CDs by local groups and individual musicians, as well as functional and decorative works in glass, hand-painted and hand-woven scarves, jewelry, paintings, photography and stained glass. Gift certificates are always available.

The Heights Arts Holiday Store opens with a members’ preview on Friday, Nov. 7, 6–7 p.m., followed by an open reception from 7–9 p.m. The store runs through Dec. 30, with expanded evening and Sunday hours. For more information, visit www.heightsarts.org or call 216-371-3457.

Rachel Bernstein

Rachel Bernstein is executive director of Heights Arts.

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Volume 7, Issue 11, Posted 5:57 PM, 10.30.2014