Monday, May 1, 2017




Morven in May: A Celebration of Art, Craft and Garden

WHEN: Friday, May 5,  Preview Garden Party, from 6:30 to 9 p.m.; opens to the general public on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friends of Morven can preview the plant sale (and get a 10 percent discount on purchases) on Friday, May 5, from 1 to 3:30 p.m. 
Great Lawn at Morven Museum and Garden, which is located at 55 Stockton St., Princeton.
ADMISSION: Preview Tickets start at $175. Saturday & Sunday tickets are available at the door and are $10 per person, $8 for Friends of Morven.
Purchase tickets in advance on Morven’s website or by calling (609) 924-8144 ext.113.
All proceeds help fund the museum’s collections and exhibitions, historic gardens, and educational programs. For more information, call (609) 924-8144 x 113, or visit:


As a neurosurgeon, Cliff Lee performed delicate brain surgery.  Today, the former doctor now applies his keen and precise surgical skills to creating magnificent porcelain vessels, which American Craft Magazine, says "are prized for their elegant forms, exquisite carving, whisper-thin walls, and luminous glazes. Evoking classical Chinese pottery (above) and the natural world, they are unlike anyone else’s."  The master porcelain potter's work is highly-prized, and can be found in the permanent collection of the White House, the Smithsonian's Renwick Gallery, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a rare distinction for a living artist.

Lee, of Stevens PA, who makes his Morven in May debut, joins a select group of thirty-seven professional fine craft artists from across the country for “Morven in May: A Celebration of Art, Craft and Garden." This acclaimed juried exhibition and sale of contemporary, American-made fine craft has made a name for itself in the fine craft show circuit among collectors and artists alike.  

Jill M. Barry, Executive Director of Morven Museum and Garden, encourages attendees to visit with each artist in the show. "They each have stories to share about their inspiration and technique that will make each purchase that much more of a treasured part of your collection. It is a privilege for Morven to present this extraordinary group of artists who are among the top echelon of their chosen craft."

Along with an array of beautifully crafted art objects, Morven will offer for sale a distinct collection of perennials and heirloom annuals. All proceeds from Morven in May help fund the museum's exhibitions, historic gardens, and educational programs.

This year's Morven in May also welcomes for the first time world-class furniture maker David S. Talley who began his professional career as a dentist; Dave and Patti Hegland, (Chestertown, MD), who left behind the corporate world to pursue their artistic passion of studio glass; and Mary Raivel, (Baltimore, MD), who practiced environmental law as a federal and state government attorney, and is now a full-time metalsmith and jeweler.

"Although I didn’t realize it at the time, the origins of the work come from my experience as a young dental student, infatuated with the shape and curves of teeth, and then later, as a boatbuilder and world-cruising sailor, with a deep appreciation for the appealing shape of boats. In the later stage of my boating days, while living aboard ship I spontaneously began making sculptural furniture," explains Talley (Tenants Harbor, ME). 

The Hegland's creative life began as dedicated collectors of fine craft. "In the back of our minds, we knew that someday we, too, would like to create fine craft at the quality level we were collecting. So, when the time came to leave behind our successful corporate careers in business and engineering, we called on our analytical decision-making skills to answer the question of what type of fine craft we would create," says Patti. They chose kiln glass. Today the glass artist duo are favorites among collectors and the winner of the prestigious 2013 Niche Award, which recognizes excellence and innovation in North American craft.

Other newcomers are Danielle Blade, glass artist, (Ashley Falls, MA); Rob Caperell, contemporary ironwork, (Winchester, VA); Jupi Das, who creates exquisite paper cut art, (Blue Bell, PA); Lucy Dierks, ceramic artist, (Asheville, NC); Linda Doucette, hand felted art, (Millville PA), and Beth Farber, jewelry designer (Dobbs Ferry, NY); Phil Feinberg, who creates handmade heirloom quality stainless steel knives, (Chamberlain, SD); Cindy Grisdela, an award-winning fiber artist who creates eye-catching quilts for the wall, (Reston, VA). 

Rounding out the roster of first-timers will be Jacqueline Johnson, who creates fine beaded jewelry, (Yonkers, NY); Jeff Kleckner, ceramics, (Bethlehem, PA); Daniel Lai, who creates contemplative sculptures from books, (Knoxville, TN); Beth Levine, maker of fine and exotic leather handbags, (Patterson, NY); Fran Michaels, creates designer belts and distinctive handmade brass buckles, (Nahant MA); Gina Pannorfi, wearable fiber artist (Chicago, IL); Mea Rhee, ceramics, (Silver Spring, MD); and James Shott, woodworker, (Schwenksville, PA).


Morven in May welcomes back basketmaker and MacArthur Genius Fellow, Mary Jackson, who has the distinction of being the nation's most celebrated maker of sweetgrass baskets (Charleston, SC; above); the hand-spun wool tapestries created by master tribal weaver Wence Martinez, in collaboration with his wife, biomorphic painter Sandra Martinez, (Jacksport, WI); Marguerite Brennan, ceramics, (Summit, NJ); renowned basket maker Kari Lonning (Ridgefield, CT); and Erin Wilson, quilt maker, (Brooklyn, NY).

Also returning: John Baun, wood artist, (Buffalo, NY); Eben Blaney, furniture maker, (Edgecomb, ME); Anna Boothe (Zieglerville, PA); Shauna Burke, jewelry, (Brooklyn, NY); Kathy Cooper, floorcloth artist, (Winston-Salem, NC); Thomas Herman, jewelry (Stone Ridge, NY); Janice Kissinger, wearable fiber, (Rehoboth, MA); Linda May, textile jewelry,  (Philadelphia, PA); Barry Newstat, furniture, (Western Springs, IL); Lynn and K. Meta Reinstema, wearable fiber, (Malta, NY); Meghan Riley, jewelry, (Brooklyn, NY); Susan Tarlov, wearable fiber, (Baltimore, MD). 

Since the Morven in May Craft Show began in 2012 it has grown in size. The first year featured only 16 artists, the second 24, and today the show features 37 artists all working at the highest level in their respective medium, including glass, ceramics, decorative and wearable fiber, mixed media, jewelry, furniture and basketry. Their work will be displayed in a 100 by 100 foot tent on the Great Lawn at Morven Museum and Garden, which is located at 55 Stockton St., Princeton.

Morven in May thanks the following sponsors: Baxter Construction, Borden Perlman Salisbury & Kelly, Callaway Henderson Sotheby's International Realty, Drinker Biddle & Reath, Fulton Bank of New Jersey, Glenmede Trust, Princeton Scoop, Rago Arts & Auction Center, Saul Ewing LLP, and Witherspoon Media Group.

This event is supported in part by a grant from the New Jersey Department of State, Division of Travel and Tourism.

For more than 200 years Morven has played a role in the history of New Jersey and the nation. Originally part of a 5,500-acre tract purchased from William Penn in 1701 by the Stockton family, it became the site of the home of Richard Stockton, a Signer of the Declaration of Independence. As well as serving as a Stockton homestead into the 20thcentury, Morven was also home to Robert Wood Johnson and his family, and eventually five New Jersey governors.  In 1982, the New Jersey Governor's Mansion was relocated to nearby Drumthwacket and Morven began its conversion to a museum and opened to the public in 2004.