Steam at Harper’s Ferry made it through another year. We are now in the midst of a federal government shut down which will certainly have an impact on all the merchants in the lower town who have come to rely on the Park being open and operating! Hopefully, this situation will be resolved quickly.
In the meantime, here are some positive reflections on our second year. So much was accomplished! In addition to expanding our artist roster and organizing a second annual Art Walk, we started a new imprint, Steam at Harper’s Ferry Press – introduced Steam-exclusive postcards, and participated as a vendor at a steampunk event!
None of this would have happened without the help and support of Jason Edwards who managed to stay a lot more calm than I over the course of this year.
Steam was fortunate to have the works of Josh Aterovis and Mark Schumaker in the gallery. Josh specializes in steampunk jewelry comprised of antique watch parts and other embellishments. Mark Schumaker displayed his fantastic door knockers.
In November, the popular exhibit “Steampunk Leisure” ended featuring the work of Teresa Dunham Cavagnaro a photographer from Hedgesville, WV and Nancy Kautz, a water color painter from Harpers Ferry, WV. The posters and 3D images by Steam’s resident Artist, Jason Edwards, were a big hit. Kasey Hendricks dropped off prints of her “Sleep in Heavenly Timepiece” illustration just in time for the holiday season!
The 42nd Annual Harpers Ferry Olde Tyme Christmas was held the first two weekends of December. Jonah Knight performed in the gallery on opening day. In the exhibit “Winter Themes and Best of Steam” Steam featured many of our most popular artists, including Pith Helmet Provisions, Christopher Loggie, Kasey Hendricks, Josh Aterovis, Mark Schumaker and Jason Edwards. Steam re-installed our most popular 3D images with a new one featuring a view of Harper’s Ferry from Jefferson’s Rock. We had the good fortune to participate in a “Steampunk Stroll” organized by The Steampunk Family. In addition, we had some new steampunk espresso cups for sale which were made by local artist Phil Berneburg. Theresa Barth contributed to our festive decor with steampunk stockings which decorated our mantle. The letterpress was pumping away with our annual Christmas cards.
Steam posted a call to artists for the next exhibit, “Big Top Steam.” We also posted our first guest book review of “Sapphire Blue” prepared by Theresa Barth. Also beginning this month, Steam started promoting the Second Annual Bolivar-Harper’s Ferry Community Art Walk. Harpers Ferry National Park Bookshop, Tenfold Fair Trade Collection, Westwind Potters, Mary Adams and Scoops were the first businesses to sign up!
The “Big Top Steam” exhibit opened this month. Big Top Steam’s featured artists were Leigh Anne Cassell and Lindsey Donaldson with special installations by two additional artists, Eric Holstine and Phil Berneburg.
Steam was awarded a grant from Aha! for the Second Annual Bolivar-Harper’s Ferry Community Art Walk! Our first Steam-exclusive postcards featuring Harper’s Ferry themes became available for purchase. March also saw the first publication under the Steam at Harper’s Ferry Press imprint “The Acme Corporation, a political science fiction fantasy, by V. Edwards Clarke. We also started our “Steam’s Got Tech” postcard series.
This month was filled with preparations for the Second Annual Bolivar-Harper’s Ferry Community Art Walk starting at the Visitor’s Bureau in Bolivar and ending at the Harpers Ferry National Park Bookshop. All told, there were 21 participating venues and over 50 artists. Steam prepared commemorative woodblock prints for the event as well as commemorative bags which held various “goodies” supplied by some participating merchants and artists. Thanks go out to Theresa Barth and Kenzie Allen who volunteered to help greet walkers at the Hill Top parking lot (which looked awesome, by the way). The Big Top Steam exhibit closed this month. On April 26, Steam released its second publication under the Steam at Harper’s Ferry Press imprint “Of Steam and Spring – A Calliope Romance.” Illustrations by Kasey Hendricks.
Jason Edwards had a solo show entitled “Aware Amusings” featuring some previously seen and unseen work from this collection. The next exhibit “Around the World” was announced with a call to artists. Steam added a third publication under its Steam at Harper’s Ferry Press imprint “Guide to Creating and Protecting Fictional Characters” which debuted at the Steampunk World’s Fair at a seminar called “Character Development and the Law” held by Cynthia Gayton. Illustrations by Jason Edwards.
The “Aware Amusings” exhibit ends. The “Around the World” exhibit begins on June 29 featuring the work of John Hoffmaster and Leigh Anne Cassell. Chris Loggie is a guest artist for this exhibit, along with Steam’s Resident Artist, Jason Edwards, who prepared the promotional illustration. Theresa Barth dropped by some handmade France-themed tiny top hats for decoration. On June 28, Steam had a pre-opening reception with the artists as well as the Artomatic@Jefferson volunteer team.
The “Around the World” exhibit continues. Steam began promoting exclusive new hand-painted goggles and handmade tiny top hats.
The “Around the World” exhibit closes. Cynthia Gayton made a steampunk in literature presentation at the Bolivar-Harper’s Ferry Public Library on August 15. At the presentation, Steam distributed to attendees the first of a new postcard series featuring Jefferson County inventors. The featured inventors were Estelle Black, Royal Emerson Whitman and John Hall.
Steam’s “Travels in Time” exhibit opens featuring the work of Eric Holstine, Leigh Anne Cassell and Jason Edwards. For the first time, Steam is a vendor at a steampunk event! On September 7, Steam at Harper’s Ferry was a vendor at The Steampunk Family’s Steampunk Croquet Picnic! It was a lot of fun.
Thank you, everyone, for your support!