Discoveries America Artist Profiles 6 DVD Collection

Discoveries America Special Edition

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Discoveries America Artist Profiles 6 DVD Collection includes Painters, Metal Sculptors, Glass Artistry, Wood Sculptors, Artists In Motion and Musicians and Their Music. Condensed version also available with 5 DVD's in a single case. Duration 361 minutes.


Painters Walter Piehl, Mitchell Tolle, Alan James Robinson, Michael Smiroldo, Camille Patha and Scott Hagen.

Metal Sculptors Tracy Hett, M. T. Ligett, Polich Tallix Foundry, Valley Broze, Robert Cumpston and Jim Powers.

Glass Artistry Vases w/ James Mongrain, Contemporary marble art with Eddie Seese and Steve Davis, Neon Art with Kelly and Ian Greenwood, stained glass restoration with Cathedral Crafts, and glass harper Peter "The Glassman" Bennett.

Wood Sculptors Native Carving by Duane Bosch, Vicenti Decoys and Havre de Grace Decoy Museum, Wharton Esherick Museum, Max Osorio's Chainsaw Art from Log to Bear, Bud Ellis and Chattanooga Horsin' Around Carousel, Woody's Chair Shop and Gene Bahr Wildlife Carvings.

Artists In Motion The talented artists featured in this program utilize an abundance of mediums including some conventional like grass, stone, glass, felt, metal and some rather unique... like pumpkins, deer hair and even spider webs! This program celebrates creative people doing what they love.

Musicians and Their Music Experience the unique thrill in the diversity of music all over the USA. Music defines this country social and cultural identity through class, race, ethnicity, geography, religion, language and gender. This program celebrates the remarkable variety of music and musicians all over America. From Bluegrass, Mountain Music and Cajun to Gullah Spirituals, Jazz, Rock, Country,  Barbershop and everything in between!

SE13 REVIEW: Video Librarian
Discoveries America Artist Profiles: Painters (2010) 68 min. DVD: $24.95. Bennett-Watt HD Productions. PPR. ISBN: 978-1-934682-53-1. This edition of the Discoveries America series focuses on seven painters and the processes they employ to create art. Featured are:

  • Walter Piehl of North Dakota, who paints Western subjects in an abstract impressionist style
  • Alan James Robinson of Connecticut, whose interest in maps converges with his art
  • Camille Patha of Washington state, who uses various mediums and techniques in her boldly colored creations
  • Mitchell Tolle of Kentucky, whose intricate pencil drawings and watercolors include portraits and landscapes
  • Michael Smiroldo of Louisiana, who produces vibrant canvases depicting jazz-related images
  • Scott Hagen of Ohio, a self-described barn artist whose brush strokes adorn the sides of agricultural buildings in more than a dozen states.

Like other productions in Jim and Kelly Watt high-definition-filmed series, the visuals here are superb. Offering an intimate look at the creative process, this is recommended. Aud: P. (C. Block)

SE15 REVIEW: Video Librarian
Discoveries America Artist Profiles: Glass Artistry (2010) 50 min. DVD: $24.95. Bennett-Watt HD Productions. PPR. ISBN: 978-1-934682-55-5. This visually stunning Discoveries America special edition explores various processes involved in making glass art, along the way profiling several leading artisans in the field. Glass Artistry begins with a visit to the Museum of Glass in Tacoma WA, which has a working hot shop where observers can watch pieces being blown and shaped. Here, James Mongrain, a mentee of renowned artist Dale Chihuly, demonstrates how he creates elaborate goblets, vases, and other objects.

Also featured are two marble makers from West Virginia Eddie Seese and Steve Davis whose gorgeous one-of-a-kind creations with graduated color elements and multiple twists are a far cry from the aggies familiar to many viewers; father-and-son duo Kelly and Ian Greenwood, who fashion neon pieces in their studio in Montana; and concert glass harpist and street entertainer Peter Bennett of Alaska, who describes the history and physics of music created via glass instruments. A visit to Cathedral Crafts a workshop in Minnesota that makes and restores stained glass rounds out this fascinating and informative art and crafts tour. Highly recommended. Aud: P. (C. Block)

SE16 REVIEW: Video Librarian
Discoveries America Artist Profiles: Wood Sculptors (2010) 41 min. DVD: $24.95. Bennett-Watt HD Productions. PPR. ISBN: 978-1-934682-56-2. This illuminating documentary from Jim and Kelly Watt high-definition-filmed Discoveries America series takes viewers on a trip across the U.S. to meet (or learn about) a number of artists doing exquisite work with woodcarving. Among the chapters is a stop in: 

  • Alaska to meet Native carver Duane Bosch, who creates Northern Tlingit style art objects (boxes, masks, and other items)
  • Maryland to see Pat Vincenti, maker of beautiful duck decoys (leading to a subsequent trip to the Havre de Grace Decoy Museum)
  • Pennsylvania for a breathtaking tour of the legacy of sculptor Wharton Esherick, who brought unique forms to wooden furniture and all-wood environments;
  • A Chattanooga factory where gorgeous carousel animals are lovingly made under the guidance of Bud Ellis
    • Other artists featured here include Vermont chainsaw craftsman Max Osorio, Maine fish carver Gene Bahr, and the Woody family of North Carolina, representing seven generations of Early American handcrafted chair makers. Highly recommended. Aud: P. (T. Keogh)

SE17 REVIEW: Video Librarian
Discoveries America Artist Profiles: Artists in Motion (2010) 62 min. DVD: $24.95. Bennett-Watt HD Productions. PPR. ISBN: 978-1-934682-57-9. This entry from Jim and Kelly Watt acclaimed high-definition-filmed Discoveries America series looks at the work of a dozen artists/artisans who are wide-ranging in their chosen media, running the gamut from fairly traditional forms such as glassblowing, limestone sculpture, and letterpress printing, to the more unconventional, including pumpkin carving, Western hat making, and at the extreme end of the spectrum creating plaques out of spider webs. The geographic distribution falls primarily in the East, Midwest, and South, with Vermont alone appearing three times.

Interesting historical information crops up in the segment about Sweet Grass Baskets in Charleston, SC, where a couple uses bulrush grass, seaweed, pine needles, and other natural fibers to continue an African art form brought to America by slaves. Demonstrating the incredible patience required to tie flies for fly fishing, Chris Helm of Ohio spends many hours turning out his intricate and beautiful creations. And viewers will enjoy dropping in on an annual event at Ellie Farm Market in West Berlin, VT, where for the past 20 years the owner has hand-carved 1,000 jack-o-lanterns illuminated by candles. As an interesting survey of creativity off the beaten path, this is recommended. Aud: P. (C. Block)

SE18 REVIEW: Video Librarian
Discoveries America Artist Profiles: Musicians and Their Music (2010) 97 min. DVD: $24.95. Bennett-Watt HD Productions. PPR. ISBN: 978-1-934682-58-6. This special edition from the high-definition-filmed Discoveries America series showcases music as a cornerstone of community gatherings across the nation, taking a long look at a wide variety of musicians and folk artists. Filmmakers Jim and Kelly Watt begin their journey in rural Mount Rogers, VA, whose tiny K 12 school has a traditional mountain music band in which students of all ages play bass, guitar, dulcimer, fiddle, and other instruments.

Many of the groups featured in the first half of the program specialize in similar genres, as well as bluegrass. The style of a number of the female vocalists echoes that of Alison Krauss, while you can also hear a little of Bill Monroe in every mandolin lick. In addition, viewers will see and hear street musicians in Nashville; cowboy poets in Montana; the Bar J Wranglers in Jackson Hole, WY; Cajun and jazz in Louisiana; barbershop quartets in Illinois; black gospel in South Carolina; and, of course, rock and roll everywhere. Instrument makers are also featured, including Wayne Henderson of Henderson Guitars, who truly handcrafts his instruments right down to using a pocket knife to carve necks! Highly recommended. Aud: P. (C. Block)