Engaging and mentoring new talents is one of our Tour goals and this year we’ll have two exciting Emerging Artists, Luke Bauer and Laurie Monsma. Luke Bauer weaves unique baskets. Let’s let him tell his unique story –
“In 2013, I made my first basket at a primitive skills gathering. Before I arrived, I knew that I wanted to make a basket and my enthusiasm only grew as I felt each plant in my hand. It was like remembering something that was hidden deep in my body. I took a few more basketry classes over the next few years at the same gathering, but I was always out in the woods learning about the plants I would forage for food and growing my sense of wonder about what could be shaped into baskets.
“For whatever reason, I always wanted to make baskets with materials that I gathered and processed myself. Something just felt good about that. When I moved to West Virginia in 2014 and found an abundance of plants right outside my door I put my hands to the work of developing the skills that were modelled to me in those classes. Harvesting my first Tulip Poplar tree to make a basket led to stripping Hickory bark for lashing, then my first Paw Paw cordage, and then it was one plant after another. I wander the woods every week in search of inspiration, plants and a relationship with the natural world where my impact is regenerative and I deepen my understanding and sense of connection. From that point, I create, teach and hope to inspire others to get outside and play with the possibilities that plants provide.
“Since my first basket, I've wanted to be a good basketmaker, but I've found the process of learning to be endless, challenging and re-aligning. The work of making baskets has taught me more about myself than I ever imagined it could. Each plant has its own way in the world. I learn from observing them in their place and then in the conversation of basketmaking. I imagine all the hands that have had their own unique conversations over millennia and enjoy my own, while inviting others to theirs.”
Enjoy our Covid Conscious Tour (masks please) November 13 and 14. We can’t wait to show you our new ventures as artists! We think you’ll be amazed. Get the full story and stay updated at www.overthemountainstudiotour.com