The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania
Creative Makers Exhibit: Elkwood Arts
Photographs of Elkwood Arts, which can be found in Elk County.
A creative production company with a mission, Elkwood Arts is a place of inspiration.
Located in Ridgway, PA, this licensed vocational facility provides sheltered employment and training to disabled adults, while simultaneously producing quality handmade products from Pennsylvania hardwoods.
One large, open room filled with machines and woodworking tools of all shapes and sizes serves as the focus of the operation. It has a modern, safe feel.
This is where the drilling, cutting, chiseling and hammering takes place.
Storage bins are brimful of wood, organized by type – black cherry, hickory, etc. And much of the wood is donated by local companies.
The program is offered by Dickinson Center Inc., a nonprofit organization, and is carried out by a number of individuals.
The employees’ pride in their work shines through as they cheerfully explain just what part they play in the overall production effort.
Many projects are underway at any given point – ranging from one-off creations, like a special cutting board ordered for a wedding gift, to large orders, such as hundreds of magnets for a local gift shop.
And the possibilities seem endless.
These images were captured by Tracy Smith as part of the 2018 Creative Makers Exhibit, a traveling showcase of creative makers working in the PA Wilds.
More about the show here. Proceeds from the sales of the Creative Makers Exhibit photographic tiles & posters will go back into the work of the Wilds Cooperative and the extension of this project as we will continue photographing the creative makers living and working in the PA Wilds.
Each tile measures 8 in x 8 in and is mounted on foam core that is approximately 3/4 in thick and comes with adhesive attached for wall mounting.
Please note: Orders for photographic tiles are placed in a batch at the end of each month with the vendor, and then take an additional 2 weeks for delivery. Please be prepared that your order could take 4-6 weeks for delivery.
Over 10 years ago, a groundbreaking effort began to brand a quarter of the Commonwealth as the "Pennsylvania Wilds" and invest in it to create a premier nature, heritage and cultural destination that would fuel local economies and inspire stewardship among the people who live, work, play and visit the region. Engaging the region's artists and craftspeople in the work is key to building a meaningful regional brand and infusing pride into economically-distressed communities. The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania, our membership program that supports artisans and entrepreneurs through such regional branding, was born out of this belief. Today, nearly 200 local artists and craftspeople participate in this juried arts and business development program. "Creative Makers" reflects the splendor and uniqueness of the Pennsylvania Wilds landscape and rural lifestyle, and the resourcefulness and talent of the artists who live and work here. PA Wilds Juried photographers captured the images, and our goal with the exhibit is to help tell the story of the creative individuals living and working in the PA Wilds.
This project is made possible through grants from the Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts.
The PA Wilds is home to an impressive and diverse community of skilled artisans, craftspeople, and producers working across a variety of media. The PA Wilds Conservation Shop is proud to source and curate our shop using products made the many talented makers of The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania.
Learn more about our sourcing now.
PA Wilds Conservation Shops are owned and operated by the Pennsylvania Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc. a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit. To learn more about our nonprofit mission please visit pawildscenter.org.