Breaking the Mold: Women in Nantucket Folk Art explores the many ways in which women have been involved with the production, promotion, and preservation of Nantucket’s most iconic folk arts, like basket making, scrimshaw, and woodcarving.
Explored the relationships between basket makers and students throughout history from the whaling era to the present. A giant “family tree” of basket makers was the final result of the exhibit. Featured artists were Arthur R. Martin and Frederick Chadwick.
2014 “21st Century Basketry”
Baskets that made their way back to Nantucket from off island. Several prominent off island collections were featured. Featured artists were Davis Hall and William Sevrens.
2012 “Gifts from the Heart”
Baskets that were given or received to commemorate memorable occasions. Featured artists were Captain Thomas James and Harry Hilbert.
2011 “Members’ Collection”
Baskets that were made or owned by the museum’s members. Featured artists were William Appleton, Ferdinand Sylvaro and Stephen Gibbs.
2010 “From Folk Art to Fine Art”
This exhibit traced the art form from the early utilitarian baskets to the more sophisticated decorative baskets of today. Featured artists were Captain Andrew Sandsbury, Clinton Mitchell Ray, José Reyes and Albert Ottison.
2009 “10th Anniversary”
Celebration of the museum’s 10th anniversary.
2008 “Celebrations! An Exhibit of Traditional Nantucket Arts”
In addition to lightship baskets, this was the first exhibit to include other Nantucket arts such as ivory carving, silver, scrimshaw and paintings to compliment the baskets.
2007 “Through The Collector’s Eye”
Collections from various collectors displayed as a collection with a focus on what drives a collector.
2006 “Lightship Basket Nests and More”
Over 40 nests of baskets from all vintages were featured.
2005 “A Parade of Purses”
Purses from the earliest known through the present.
2004 “Nantucket Occasions”
Baskets celebrating special occasions such as weddings, Christmas, anniversaries, birthdays, cranberry festival, picnics and other memorable family events.
Passing On the Tradition” – Baskets made by various family members with the lineage of who learned to weave from whom. The exhibit included a special feature; “Lightships to Spaceships” a collection of baskets made in space by astronaut Dan Bursch.
2002 “Reyes’ 100th Birthday”
A celebration of José Reyes’ 100th birthday featuring baskets made by José Reyes and Reyes family members.
2001 “Nantucket Inspired Baskets”
Baskets inspired by the traditional Nantucket Lightship Basket tradition.
2000 “Old and New”
Features the changes in basket making trends from the lightship era to the present day.