Penland School Of Crafts

Penland School of Crafts is a national center for craft education located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina. Penland offers one-, two-, and eight-week workshops in books & paper, clay, drawing, glass, iron, metals, photography, printmaking, textiles, and wood. The school also sponsors artists' residencies, educational outreach programs, and a craft gallery.

Penland NC

United States

Post Office Box 37
Phone: 001828.765.2359
Fax: 001.828.765.7389

College Photos (1)

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Our Aims

Workshops are the core of Penland’s educational program.  

Location and Getting there

Directions to Penland School

Penland School of Crafts is located near Spruce Pine in Mitchell County, North Carolina, Northeast of Asheville. We also have a map to Penland.

Note: If you are unfamiliar with the area, we strongly advise that you arrive before dark; it's easy to get lost. Penland is one hour from Asheville, one hour from Johnson City, three hours from Charlotte, one hour from Marion, three hours from Knoxville.

From Asheville: Take NC 19/23 (future I-26) North past Mars Hill. Take exit #9 towards Burnsville, staying on NC 19. This road will become NC 19E (DO NOT get on 19W). Continue past Burnsville, approximately 10 miles. Turn left at Penland School sign (large BP station on the right) onto Penland Road. Follow Penland Road for 3 miles when you will cross a bridge and railroad tracks. One mile past the railroad tracks, bear left at the big curve. Go all the way up the hill.

From the Piedmont and Eastern North Carolina: Take I-40 west to Marion, Exit #86. Follow Rte. 226 North around Marion, up the mountain, and under the Blue Ridge Parkway. After several miles, you will pass a shopping strip on the right,...  [ Read All ]

Department and information about the department

Each summer, the school offers 98 one- or two-week classes in books and paper, clay, drawing and painting, glass, iron, metals, photography, printmaking, textiles, wood, and other media.

In the spring and fall, Penland has seven or eight classes that run for eight weeks. These long sessions, called Concentrations, are unlike anything else offered in craft: almost as long as a college semester with the focused intensity of the single-subject workshop.

Penland has no standing faculty—instructors and students come to the school for the duration of their session. Students at Penland take only one class at a time, making it possible to cover a tremendous amount of material and to form close relationships with other students in a few weeks.

The variety of classes offered is one of Penland’s great strengths. In addition to the array of media, Penland’s workshops range from broad introductory classes to those covering a single technique. There are offerings for beginning, intermediate, and advanced students, with the bulk of the classes welcoming all three.
The Penland Core Student Program is a work/study fellowship that ...  [ Read All ]

News and Events

News & Events

Glass furnace building workshop with Eddie Bernard, Sept. 15-20
Wood 4 Penland, a gallery sale for the Penland wood studio
Penland Featured on Our State TV
Penland Appoints Director of Development and Communications
Penland Community Open House, Saturday, March 4
Salt-Kiln Building Workshop with Shane Mickey, March 12-23
Glory Hole Building Workshop with Eddie Bernard, Feb. 19-25

Information For  Undergraduates

Core students who are most successful come into the program with clear goals beyond the program that help guide and ground them during their time at Penland. What are your individual artistic goals? How would the Penland Core Program help you to meet these goals?
Because of the intensive nature of life at Penland, it is important that core students have the ability to maintain balance between personal, professional, and studio life. Describe how you will balance work demands with class commitments and studio objectives.
Core students have a very public role at the school—in classes and in their school jobs—and are expected to be positive ambassadors for the school and community. Please give examples of how you would represent Penland to students, instructors, and guests. Describe what your strengths and weaknesses would be as a member of a small community.
Core students perform jobs that are crucial to the operation of the school. What specific job skills can you contribute to Penland’s operation/improvement? What experience do you have that would exhibit your confidence and ability to accept responsibility, maintain a p...  [ Read All ]

Student Facilities

Information about the Penland studios is provided below. Included is a list of equipment, supplies and materials available, classroom description and general location on campus, descriptions of student workspace, storage, shared studio equipment and safety information. Contact information for the coordinator of that studio is also available, if you have further questions.

Books & Paper
Drawing and Painting
Textiles-Surface Design, 3rd floor
Textiles-Weaving,2nd floor


Penland Housing

Penland housing is quite simple. Buildings are not air-conditioned—the climate is moderate and you can count on cool temperatures at night. Furnishing is basic: a bed and a place to put your clothes. Dormitories are housing units with between four and thirteen beds per room (no bunks). Some of our housing is located one-half mile from the center of campus. Many folks welcome the extra walk, but please let us know if this will present a physical hardship for you.

Several buildings in the center of campus were recently constructed or renovated, and they provide a greater level of comfort than our other housing. These housing units are listed as preferred housing—and we charge a little more for them. We do our best to match students with the type of housing they request, but this is not always possible. Housing assignments are made shortly before the session begins.

Area Accommodations
Penland addresses are one mile or less from the school.
Spruce Pine and Bakersville locations are 15-20 minutes driving time.
Burnsville and Little Switzerland locations are 20-30 minutes driving time.


How To Apply

Applications must be received in our office by 5:00 pm on Friday, October 13, 2006. Incomplete applications will not be eligible for review. Applicants must submit the following materials for consideration:
A written statement of intent that addresses the five application questions (no more than two pages total)
Ten slides or printed images of your most recent work. Slides must be clearly labeled with the artist’s name, title of work, date of completion, materials and dimensions.
Three letters of recommendation: at least one letter must address your artistic commitment/development, and at least one letter must reference your work or service experience. Please provide references with a copy of the application questions so that they may specifically address our criteria.
Contact information (name, title, phone number/email address) for two people who have directly supervised you in a work or service position.
A current résumé /CV (no more than two pages)

Send application materials to

Penland School of Crafts
Attention: Mark Boyd/Leslie Noell
P.O. Box 37
Penland, NC 28765

Notification of decisions about new C...  [ Read All ]

Visit us (open days)

For more information, or to be put on our mailing list, contact Penland School of Crafts, Post Office Box 37, Penland NC 28765-0037. Phone: 828.765.2359 ; fax: 828.765.7389; email This web site also includes directions to Penland and a map.


Request a prospectus (Number, e-mail or follow link)

Need a Catalog or More Information?
You will find a wealth of information about Penland on this website, including all information about upcoming classes. If you would like to receive our catalogs in the mail, send email to the Penland -with your mailing address and ask to be put on the catalog mailing list.

If you have any questions about Penland, feel free to call the school at 001-828-765-2359.