2015 Visions + Visionaries Auction Items

We are thrilled with the fantastic items we have up for auction at this year’s Visions + Visionaries benefit gala. If you are unable to attend the Gala but would like to bid on an item, we accept absentee bids! Please call Rebecca at 828.253.3227, ext. 114.

Auction items up for bid include:

Life Slab Table

Donated by The Old Wood Co.

Tree of Life Table

Life Slab Table – 120 x 24 x 32 inches.

Across time and culture, the Tree of Life stands as a metaphor for the interconnection of all life on Earth, touching literature and art, science, religion, philosophy, mythology. In that spirit of interconnectedness and symbiosis, Darren Green, founder of The Old Wood Co., teamed up with accomplished blacksmith Matthew Waldrop of Northern Crescent Iron in Zirconia, NC, to create the Life Slab Table. The table is firmly rooted in collaboration. Green sources the fallen trees, then planes, sands and applies his own eco-friendly finishes which enhance the natural character of the wood. He makes butterfly joints from African black wood to join the crack in the tree’s pit. To create the base, Waldrop may spend five days shaping the pipe steel into a trunk-like form, a design and process he’s been honing since 2005, when he too was operating out of a studio in the River Arts District.

A Week Vacation for Four Adults in Deer Isle, Maine

Donated by Jim and Gail Plotts

deer isle montage

Visit the island of Deer Isle in Penobscot Bay and stay in a home with views of the ocean. The week-long trip for four adults includes:

  • A ride on a 26-foot “Lobster” style boat for a 3-hour cruise including either lunch or afternoon cocktails
  • Lunch and two rounds of golf at the Deer Isle Country Club — a 9-hole course in existence since 1925
  • A delicious lobster dinner at the home of your hosts
  • Afternoon Tea at Nervous Nellies Jams and Jellies, a local can’t-miss spot
  • A great bottle of wine for sipping on the porch while you watch the sunset over the water

The home is walking distance to the pier, great restaurants and the many galleries and artists studios in Stonington, MA. A tour of Haystack School of Crafts can be arranged.

The package accommodates four adults and must be used by October 1, 2015 (based on availability).

Mark Peiser Bowl

Donated by the Artist

Peiser Bowl

Cold stream cast glass bowl, 2005, 15 inches in diameter, 4.5 inches in height

Since 1967, when Mark Peiser became involved with the Studio Glass Movement, he has been recognized for his uniquely individualized approaches and accomplishments. Peiser’s continual investigation of the expressive implications of glass properties and processes have led to distinctive bodies of work such as The Opaque Image Vessels, Paperweight Vase Series, The Innerspace Series, The Forms of Consciousness and most recently The Cold Stream Cast Vessels.

Mark Peiser lives and works in Penland, NC. He is a founder of the Glass Art Society of which he is now an Honorary Lifetime Member. His work is included in many public and private collections throughout the world.

A Week of Luxury Sailing in the Greek Islands

Donated by Festiva Sailing Vacations




Enjoy an all-inclusive week of luxury sailing for two people in the Greek Islands, aboard an elegant catamaran!

From the moment you step aboard this richly appointed yacht, you’ll know that this will be a vacation like no other. Your craft is the modern Lagoon 420, renowned as one of the world’s finest charter catamarans. Onboard, you’ll reside in one of several well-appointed stateroom cabins, complete with air conditioning and private bath. You’ll enjoy breakfasts, lunches and one dinner prepared by the yacht’s private chef. You’ll sip cocktails from the yacht’s open bar. All your recreation equipment is provided including snorkeling and kayaking gear, plus a stand up paddle board.

On your visit to this region of the Mediterranean, you not only will you find great sailing, snorkeling and sunbathing on beautiful beaches, you’ll experience some of the most remarkable ancient temples, castles and have the opportunity to take historic sightseeing tours and enjoy fantastic Greek dining in the many quaint Greek island communities. On your first night in the beautiful city of Athens, you will enjoy one-night stay at a four star hotel. You also have the option to enjoy a three to four hour Athens city tour with your very own tour guide. Then it’s time to set sail! You will be provided with a shuttle that will take you to Lavrion where you will begin your 7-day sailing vacation!

Greek Island highlights include:

  • Ancient Greek temple of Poseidon
  • Beautiful beaches of Kythos
  • Local art scene
  • Highly rated Kolona beach
  • Cosmopolitan appeal of Mykonos


  • This certificate is not for exclusive use of the catamaran
  • This certificate is valid for adults only
  • This certificate does not include transportation to the hotel
  • This certificate does not include gratuity for your crew
  • Sail dates depend on inventory availability
  • The certificate holder is responsible for all travel, taxes, and incidental costs outside of the package
  • This certificate expires December 31, 2016

Wood Sculpture by Stoney Lamar

Donated by the Artist


Blue Birds (detail), ash Steel and milk paint. 36 inches tall.


Blue Birds, ash Steel and milk paint. 36 inches tall.

Stoney Lamar is one of the most proficient artists using multi-axis woodturning, creating work that has evolved constantly, both in complexity and scale. His recent retrospective exhibition at the Asheville Art Museum covered his career from the 1980s to the present, with work ranging from small, exquisitely crafted works to larger recent pieces, carved with chainsaws and chisels, eight to nine feet in height, often incorporating steel.

An Abstract Painting by Linda Gritta

Donated by the Artist

mixed media, 48 x 56 inches

mixed media, 48 x 56 inches

In the crazy, full-tilt pace to which we can often feel tethered, our eyes have become habituated to simply scanning and skimming, glancing at and glimpsing the world around us. Linda McCane Gritta’s paintings are an invitation to slow down and savor the experience and what is beyond.

Through the vibrant strength of her palette and the vigor of her visual search, Linda conveys her passion for seeing, as well as the excitement of continual discovery. One can sense that what she is “about” is not merely the execution of a painting, but rather a deep involvement with the probing, the distilling, the turning over, the transformation of the mundane into something marvelous and even mysterious.

With a degree in studio art and advanced work at the New York Studio School, Linda has shown her paintings in several venues in the southeast as well as in New York City.

A Tourmaline Ring

Donated by Alexander & Lehnert Fine Jewelry

pink tourmaline ringAlexander & Lehnert Fine Jewelry

Alexander & Lehnert features the works of Michele Alexander and Bill Lehnert, two talented Asheville artists with over 50 years of combined jewelry experience. Located in the historic Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville, this gallery of fine custom jewelry showcases the distinctive designs of each artist.

Four Nights in a Four-Bedroom Villa in Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica

Donated by John and Cater Hipp

ExclusiveResorts-CostaRica-4 ExclusiveResorts-CostaRica-2

A four-night vacation in a luxury 4-bedroom villa, 4.5 bath overlooking the ocean in beautiful Costa Rica! Guests of this Exclusive Resorts property can enjoy ziplining, whitewater rafting, fishing and more in the resort area. During your stay, you’ll enjoy a dedicated on-site concierge, personal golf carts, private infinity pools and access to a private clubhouse.

Costa Rica is known for its lush jungles and dreamy beaches and Papagayo Peninsula offers the best of both. Located along the north Pacific coast of Costa Rica, the area is ideal for thrill seekers who want to zipline through treetops amid monkeys or surf world-class waves at Ollie’s Point. Not a daredevil? Not to worry. This is also the perfect place for lazy days on the beach and sunset catamaran cruises.

 A Weeklong Vacation in Santa Fe, New Mexico

Donated by Garth Clark and Mark Del Vecchio

Santa Fe 1casita2-600casita6-600

A weeklong stay for two people with Garth Clark and Mark Del Vecchio in Santa Fe, New Mexico. They have a private casita that accommodates two, with full bath, living room and kitchen with refrigerator, microwave and coffee maker. Included in this wonderful stay will be a private dinner in the Clark/Del Vecchio home, provided by your hosts and you will be able to see their personal collection of ceramics and art.

The Santa Fe package also includes:

Garth Clark is the Editor-in-Chief for CFile’s publishing projects, journal and news magazine. With Mark Del Vecchio in 1981 he founded Garth Clark Gallery in New York, Los Angeles and briefly London and Kansas City. He founded the Ceramic Arts Foundation in 1979 and was its Director until 2005.

A Beautiful Suite in a Hacienda for 7 Nights

Hacienda Las Trancas in Central Mexico

Donated by Kelley and Stephen Wilkinson

hacienda pool hacienda garden hacienda hammocks hacienda sunset

A 7-night vacation at a fully-staffed Hacienda for 7 nights for two people.

At this 450-year-old former Hacienda in the beautiful colonial heart of Mexico, you will step back in time and experience the elegance of another era, to a place filled with romance, tranquility and laughter.

Vacation package includes:

  • A suite for two people
  • All meals: 3 per day (Arrival day-welcome drinks/snacks plus dinner, Departure day-breakfast or travel bags)
  • Fitness Center with full circuit 15-piece Cybex Gym with Elliptical Trainer and Treadmill.
  • Mountain bikes with hundreds of miles of back roads through “El Campo.”
  • Full-time bilingual concierge guest services
  • 18 full-time staff members
  • Stables with 12 horses with full-time trail guide
  • Heated pool with deck & patio
  • English Satellite TV — 250 channels in each suite
  • Hundreds of movies free of charge
  • Internet in each suite, Wireless in the gardens
  • Heated Jacuzzi, poolside
  • Massage Therapists offering spa services in the spa
  • Honor Bar stocked with wines and liquors
  • Chauffeurs on staff — can transport up to 20 people at a time
  • Physician in Residence (varies seasonally)

The Hacienda is close to the towns of San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, and  Dolores Hidalgo.

Reservations must be booked within one year (July 2015-June 2016). Some restrictions may apply and some dates may not be available.

Glass Sculpture by Shane Fero

Donated by the Artist

Shane FerroCampanula and the Hummingbird, , 2015, hot & flameworked glass, sandblasted & acid-etched, 26.5 x 9.5 x 6 inches. Bottle gaffed by Che Rhodes.

The birds and totemic spirits in Shane Fero‘s work dance to a rhythm created in his imagination.  It is this piquancy in both his blown vessels and sculptural work, including boxes, that so delights the viewer.

Often using colored glasses in various forms of shards, powders, cane or even stained glass, Shane accomplishes the swirling patterns and mysterious movement of color in his work.  His blow pieces are achieved by the controlled forcing of air into clear glass tubes while molten, with the colors added in an overlay technique.

Shane has won many awards and taught or lectured on lampworking at many locations including Pilchuck Glass School, the University of Michigan and Penland School of Crafts.

Tea Set by Paul Weller

Donated by the Artist

teapotStainless Steel and Fabric

Stunning handmade stainless steel tea service – four pieces, teapot, cream and sugar set and large tray.

Designer Paul Weller trained at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, earning a BFA with High Honors in Gold and Silversmithing. After several years working in restoration and architectural fitting, Paul came to the US to design tableware for Austin Creations Silversmithing. He formed his own company, Aeropablo Designs, in 2011 to combine his love for high-end design and the beauty and challenge of stainless steel.

Portrait-Sitting with Photographer Parker Pfister

Donated by the Artist

pfister1 pfister2 pfister3

Parker J’s images are known the world over.

His creative eye, style, and personality have made him one of the most highly regarded wedding photographers in the world. As a matter of fact he was just listed as one of the top 10 wedding photographers in the world by American Photo magazine. Parker J has been awarded many times over, both nationally and internationally, and his images and interviews have graced the pages of In Style, People, OK magazine, Modern Bride, Martha Stewart, Today’s Bride, Rangefinder, Studio Photography and Design, Photo District News, Weddings Unveiled and many other magazines and photographic books. His images have also appeared on Entertainment Tonight and The Food Network.

Most of Parker’s work is made with a Deardorff 8×10 view camera and a Voigtlander lens from 1902. The negative is made directly onto silver gelatin paper instead of film. The paper is then processed in a developer solution and fixer that he has created. The paper negative is then rendered. After drying, the negative is placed on top of another silver gelatin paper and exposed with light thus creating a positive final print. If the print is to be made larger, then it will be scanned and printed through digital means.

Three-Night Vacation for Two People in New York City

Donated by Deena and Jerry Kaplan and Anonymous Museum Friends


Enjoy three nights for two people in the Lombardy Hotel, in an apartment-like residence with 900 square feet decorated with fine appointments, two queen size beds, a dinette table, walk-in closets, LCD TVs, Kudos Spa amenities and plush cotton robes.

This trip also includes:

  • Private tours of galleries and studios tailored to your interests
  • Lunch at the Met

Three weeks prior notice required.

A Case of Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon

Donated by Bill Lenoci

robert mondavi wine

1988 Robert Mondavi Winery Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley
1 case (12 bottles)

Approachable and delicious now, this 1988 shows how beautifully Mondavi Cabernets can age. Balanced, elegant and without any rough edges, this is the epitome of an accessible but age-worthy Napa Cabernet. The Robert Mondavi Winery is the best known winery in California, and with good reason. The late Robert Mondavi, who died in 2008, was Napa Valley’s most passionate ambassador and the maker of some of the valley’s very best wines.

Genuine Handwoven Bulgarian Rug

Donated by Tunc and Nancy Togar and Togar Rugs

Togar 4

Genuine handwoven rug. 6 ft x 7 ft 9 inches.

Rare, unusual and lovely antique Bulgarian Kilim with unique design and coloration in the central panels and in the borders. Bulgarian Kilims are woven by Turkish people living in Bulgaria. Their ancestors were moved over to that area from the Konya region to protect the new borders of the Ottoman Empire. These Kilims are popular with their beautiful colors and sizes. This rug is approximately 80 years old. Woven with 100% wool and using all natural-dyes. A perfect complement to any room and suitable for hanging on the wall.