Penland School of Craft is an internationally celebrated center for education in contemporary and traditional craft, dedicated to helping people live creative lives. Founded in 1929 to preserve the craft of weaving in mountain communities, the school offers instruction by world-renowned teachers in a variety of media including books and paper, clay, drawing and painting, glass, iron, metals, photography, printmaking and letterpress, textiles, and wood. The school also offers artists’ residencies, community collaboration programs, and a gallery and information center. Many remarkable artists have settled in the community surrounding the school. World renowned artists such as Mark Peiser, Cristina Cordova, Anne Lemanski, Hoss Haley, Shane Fero, Cynthia Bringle, John Littleton and Kate Vogel, Richard Ritter, and the late Harvey Littleton, have made Mitchell County their home.
The Penland Gallery and Visitors Center is one of the finest showcases for contemporary craft in the Southeast. Attracting thousands of visitors each year, the gallery exhibits and sells work by current and former Penland School of Craft instructors, resident artists, and former students from the region and around the country. The gallery is known for showing high quality contemporary craft in a wide range of media and techniques. The artwork ranges from conceptual pieces in the exhibition spaces to remarkable functional items meant for everyday use.
Visitors are welcome at the Penland Gallery and Visitors Center, Supply Store, Coffee House, and the Resident Artist studios at the Barns. Visitors may walk the grounds of the main campus (dogs must be on a leash), however please note that the teaching studios and the dining hall are not open to the public. Please stop at the gallery on your arrival and they will provide a campus map and orientation. From there, visitors can embark on a self-guided tour of parts of campus.
Please note that hours may vary due to the season or school schedule – please check Penland’s website for current information.
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 11 am-5 pm, March-December