This leather based apprenticeship will be focused on forming and surface techniques. Jaya will be exploring wet molding including hand shaping, shaping with modeling tools, building molds and using found objects as molds to make bowls, mugs, masks, and wall hangings to name a few. For surface work, she will be learning more in depth techniques for leather tooling, then diving into embossing by carving linoleum blocks to press the leather into and deepening/defining the image with modeling tools.
Donlin Foreman (Harrisville, NH)
Leather work/craft is a theme, a first love, that has been with me throughout my life.
Though I have had no formal training I recognized I had an affinity for leather crafting my senior year in high school (Foley, Alabama 1970) – went to college (University of Montevallo, AL) thinking I was going into Marine Biology – hit organic chemistry – became a theater major – was introduced to Modern Dance and Social Dance forms by my first dance teacher Jeanette Crew – did leather work in my dorm room – opened a leather shop for seven months then recognized that I was a Dancer even though I didn’t have the training yet. I closed the shop and followed the dance path and in three years found myself in Manhattan.
While living in Manhattan I danced as a Principal Artist, coached repertoire, and taught with the Martha Graham Dance Company for twenty years. I then co-directed and choreographed at my own company Buglisi/Foreman Dance while serving as Associate Professor of Professional Practice at Barnard College/Columbia University for fifteen years. I was fortunate to have published a small volume of writing, “Out of Martha’s House” and served as chair of the Dance Panel of the New York State Council on the Arts for two years. More on my dance work including full CV can be found at www.danceocg.org.
Today, I live in the vital historic village of Harrisville, New Hampshire with my wife Jenny Emerson Foreman, our daughter Molly and son Miles. I took a space in the Granite Mill almost ten years ago and have been building a studio, crafting leather pieces with roofing slate and repurposed wood. My windows look out on the cascading waters of the mill creek.
I am proud to be a juried member of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen and the Walpole Artisans Co-op. I’m on the board of the Monadnock Art Tour and Seasonal pieces can be found at Hannah Grimes Marketplace in Keene, NH. as part of the River Valley Artisans fall tour, the Rabbit Ridge pop-up shops at the Summit Winery in Westmoreland, NH, the Keene Farmer’s Market and other local Craft Fairs.
“Jaya was introduced to me by her mother who was commissioning a “gathering bag” for her. Two years later she came to take 2 classes and make a tobacco offering pouch. We worked on it for two hrs at which point I asked if she would work with me to produce inventory for the Monadnock Art Tour. She was excited to do that and we worked constructively together in my small studio so we discussed committing to a year of working together on different projects and this is the end of that year. Jaya is a crafter/maker. She lives her craft. She believes in ritual, in myth and the mysterious essence of the natural world and in crafting meaningful and useful pieces from leather and found objects.” – Donlin Foreman
Jaya Lord (Peterborough, NH)
Born and raised in the forests of New Hampshire, I have always had an affinity with, and drawn inspiration from, the beauty of nature. I have explored many crafts and art forms to find ways to channel this connection. From fiber arts, such as eco-dyeing, to stone sculpture, wood working and nature photography, i have endeavored to harness the compelling gravitas of the natural world and work with it in the creation of art.
Now, after exploring other parts of the country for some years, I have returned to New Hampshire and re-rooted myself here. Soon after moving back I began working in leather at Horse Hill Studio with Donlin Foreman. Through this I am finding new and interesting ways to explore this life-long intertwined relationship with the forest. Whether through using nature as the inspiration for my work or repurposing some of the sticks, stones, bones, and other natural objects that I have gathered on my travels, I am finding leather to be a versatile medium for this expression. I look forward to delving deeper into this practice and discovering new potential for artistic manifestation.
“I knew from the first few hours of working with Donlin that he was someone I could learn a real understanding of not just leathercraft but true art from. He has an amazing eye for creating the correct juxtapositions to give a piece a deep sense of meaning and gravitas. He teaches the methods of leathercraft in a way that is clear and concise with calmness and humor. He is able to walk me through the practical aspects of leathercraft as well as explore it as a truly versatile creative medium.” – Jaya Lord