Folk Arts Demonstrators
Officially demonstrations are open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. But demonstrators vary throughout the day, with some available both Saturday and Sunday while others are only demonstrating for a few hours.
If you have ever wondered how someone makes a metal spoon or carves a wood bowl — how to spin a thread or make a banjo — this is your chance to not only see the work but to talk to the artist and even try it out yourself.
One of the special qualities about people in Wyoming is we still work with our hands — it’s part of our heritage and even today’s culture. And people are willing to share their expertise. For the second year, the Big Horn Basin Folk Festival will celebrate who we are – where we live – and what we do. Many of the people who are demonstrating do not attend shows or sell their work. So you have a rare opportunity to meet them.
Guilds Featured at Festival
Four guilds are participating in the Big Horn Basin Folk Festival, Aug. 6-7, in Hot Springs State Park. Visitors can spot them easily since they will have canopies with banners.
Worland Wyoming Woodturners
We are excited to have members of the Worland Wyoming Woodturners joining us with a fantastic group of activities!
Members who will be demonstrating are:
- Jodi Bennett, Worland (pyrography)
- Barrie Lynn Bryant, Kirby (gilding, other techniques).
Sam Angelo, Worland (bowls and art pieces)
- Marc Bennett, Worland; Jared Lyman, Ten Sleep; Dave Morgan, Thermopolis; and Mike Patrick, Worland, who will be working with visitors and doing other general activities.
They will have three wood lathes ready and active — visitors can try a lathe or watch a demonstration. They will be making yo-yos from Wyoming Whiskey barrel staves.
Wild West Rug Hookers
Members of the Wild West Rug Hookers Guild cover the northwest-central area of Wyoming. Members who will be displaying their work will also have plenty of supplies to let visitors try their hand at the craft. Those on hand to help are Wild West Rug Hookers. Rug hooking demonstrations, Come meet Wyoming rug hookers and try it out! Patti Tyrrell, Shell; Sylvia Gauthier, Cody; Carol Messerli, Greybull; and Debra Inglis, Clark.
Smoking Waters Art Guild (SWAG)
SWAG members will be hosting a number of hands-on activities for families, adults and kids during the Festival.
Their newest activity is Color Thermopolis, a 12-foot-long mural that can be colored in for a kids’ art activity and then erased for use by others. It will be up throughout the festival. The picture is a composite of Thermopolis-area sites. The Al & Toddi Darlington family will be watching over the mural activity.
Jeb Schenck is conducting a pre-festival workshop on outdoor photography Aug. 5.
Sallie Wesaw will conduct a short adult workshop on her iris baskets, Aug. 7, 2:00-3:30.
Howie Samelson will be demonstrating knitting, an ancient skill that was once popular with ship’s crews, Sun. morning, Aug. 7, 9-11 a.m.
Deb Stewart and Claudia Augustin will be doing folk art techniques (hand-sewing), Sunday, Aug. 7, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. in the SWAG tent.
Other activities will be he’d in the tent; check the signs for activities.
Big Horn Basin Storyteller Guild
Members of the newly-formed guild will be performing in the “Hear Me Now” Storytelling Tent both days, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Red Dirt Master Gardeners
Members of the Red Dirt Master Gardeners support the Farmers Market and the Community Garden. They will be offering activities for kids Sunday afternoon, 2-5 p.m., in the Smoking Waters Art Guild tent. Come prepared for kids to get their hands dirty (Dirt is good!)
- David Osmundsen, Arrowhead Forge, Buffalo – forged metal work – David will be working at his portable forge all during the festival. A consummate craftsman, Osmundsen is a member of the former Wyoming Artist Roster. He teaches classes as well as demonstrating in many state parks and cultural institutions throughout the year.
- Jack Mease, Lander, rawhide braiding. The year was 1953 when Jack Mease first met an “old cowboy” who introduced him to the art of braiding. Jack is a self-taught maker of leather horse gear. He draws on the styles of other braiders, including Argentinean and Australian artisans. A mechanic by trade, Jack’s skills include designing and making the necessary tools for preparing the rawhide and leather for braiding.
- Joey Puettman, Sheridan, bamboo fishing pole construction. Joey teaches fly tying, fly fishing and pole construction. His non-for-profit Joey’s Foundation works closely with troubled youth, teaching them the skills of a craftsman and providing a new focus in their lives.
- Von Ringler, Powell, fine leather work. Ringler was chosen as one of the exhibitors in the Art of the Hunt exhibit curated by the Wyoming Arts Council and shown at the Wyoming State Museum.
- Mark Whitlock, Wildlife Creations, Worland, taxidermy. Whitlock follows the traditions of his grandfather
Four guilds are represented this year:
Newest guild in our area is the Big Horn Basin Storytelling Guild. You can hear the members and meet them too over in the “Hear Me Now” Storytelling Circle, open both Saturday and Sunday. Click here to find out more about the event.
One of our home sponsors of the Festival is Smoking Waters Art Guild. In addition to help organizing and manning the festival, several members will be demonstrating for short periods during the weekend: Gavin Turner, origami; Howie Samelson, knitting. Cindy Toth can be found twining rugs at her booth in the Kiwanis Trading Post.
Members of the Wild West Rug Hookers Guild, northern Wyoming area, will be demonstrating Sat. They include Patty Tyrrell, Sylvia Gauthier,
Members of the Worland Wyoming Woodturners will be demonstrating. Jodi Bennett, Worland, will be doing pyrography on wood on Saturday. Barrie Lynn Bryant, Merglenn Studios, Kirby, gilding techniques on wood. Bryant is known for his carved and elaborate fine art frames. Sam Angelo, Worland, also a member, is in the juried art show. Angelo, a former teacher, is best known for his unusual bowls and urns. Angelo has gained national recognition and has produced numerous educational videos.
An informal group we call Friends of the Alpaca will be demonstrating several techniques in needle-felting while they man their booths in the juried art show. Linda Kernstock, SageRidge Mill, Clearmont, creates fanciful artwear while Diane Cunningham specializes in millinery and Sue McCann, Thermopolis, creates art pieces.