Craft is everywhere these days, from museums to Etsy, artisanal businesses to art schools, maker spaces to heritage practices around the globe. Alongside making, a burst of academic and museum attention in recent decades is shaping a new field: craft studies.
Warren Wilson College offers the first and only low-residency MA in Critical and Historical Craft Studies in the US. This format enables students to pursue graduate studies without relocating or leaving current employment. Students begin the 2-year program each semester in intensive on-site residencies, alternating between July on the Warren Wilson campus, and January in downtown Asheville, at the Center for Craft.
Residencies initiate a semester of study of craft history and theory, research methods, and materials labs. Research as an applied practice connects students’ project work in the Swannanoa/Asheville area to their individual research interests. Final projects, which can take a number of forms from an exhibition to writing, podcasts to curriculum redevelopment, are presented in a 5th residency and public colloquium with program Founding Partner, Center for Craft.
International faculty connects to craft through multiple disciplines. Students investigate research methods from navigating archives to research interviews; public modes of presenting craft from street fairs to exhibitions; forms of writing from exhibition reviews to academic journal articles; and alternative forms of documenting and communicating histories, such as podcasts, symposia, online platforms, and curricular development.
The priority application deadline is February 1 to be considered for merit-based scholarships and financial aid; classes begin July 2019.