Brigitte Martin will be the new executive director of the Society of Arts & Crafts (SA+C), a Boston-based nonprofit organization that strives to encourage the creation, collection and promotion of the work of contemporary craft artists and to advance public appreciation of fine craft. She will assume her new role Mar. 1, 2020.
Martin is an experienced leader in the craft industry. She most recently held the title of executive director of The Furniture Society, a non-profit educational organization working to advance the art of furniture making, and was board president of the Society of North American Goldsmiths.
She is also well-known to international crafting communities for founding and managing the Crafthaus website, an online community that supports and provides services to craft artists in all disciplines, as well as for organizing national Craft Think Tank events, and serving as editor-at-large for American Craft magazine.
SA+C board president Jennifer Rayburn says the board was familiar with Martin because of her long career in the craft industry.
“When we interviewed Brigitte, we were impressed by her analytical and thoughtful knowledge of craft, its place in society and its potential. She’s visionary in outlining opportunities to expand the reach of craft, which dovetails perfectly with the Society of Arts + Crafts’ mission of education. With our new home in the Seaport District, we’re no longer a little walk-in gallery. We are a serious organization with intentions to grow,” Rayburn said in a statement.
In an interview with Woodshop News, Martin says the furniture field, like all art and craft fields, is diverse, and the makers and interests are highly individual, as they should be.
“As far as the current state of affairs is concerned, I will say this: contrary to popular perception of who is traditionally drawn to furniture-making , i.e. white males, there are actually a fairly large number of young women and non-binary identifying people who have entered the field over the last number of years. I was pleasantly surprised following that development not only via social media but also seeing it displayed at a recent Furniture Society conference,” says Martin.
“I find that trend refreshing and look forward to what it will add to the field in terms of new design, and the topics that will be explored on the academic end. Inclusion is always a good thing in my opinion.”
For more, visit www.societyofcrafts.org.
This article originally appeared in the August 2019 issue.