The Bitsie Fund was pleased to present its first award at the Arts Council of Greater New Haven’s Arts Awards luncheon in December 2018 to the distinguished artist/printmaker and teacher, Barbara Harder, and to her collaborative partner, Creative Arts Workshop.

Barbara, a multi-award-winning artist, received her Bachelors’ Degree in Studio Art from Marymount College in 1970. She has taught at Creative Arts Workshop since 1976, heading its Printmaking Department since 1995, and has taught at Quinnipiac University since 1998. She has been a lecturer/teacher at the Yale University Art Gallery and the Yale Center for British Art, and a visiting artist at Connecticut College and the Center for Contemporary Printmaking in Norwalk.

Barbara has long been committed to supporting other artists. She has curated numerous exhibitions throughout Connecticut; was one of the founders of the Connecticut Union of Visual Artists in the late 1970s and had a central role in launching and running the original Artspace Gallery on Audubon Street.

Barbara’s work has been widely exhibited throughout Connecticut and New England as well as internationally, in Scotland, England, Australia, India and Japan.

The Bitsie Fund’s $2,500 grant will enable Barbara to travel to Japan to study the extraordinary paper created there called Washi, a paper processed by hand in the traditional manner. “Some Japanese papermakers are considered so important,” Barbara explained, “they are designated as ‘national treasures’. They can be found in small shops, schools or in family kitchens, sometimes using family secrets handed down for generations. I would like to visit as many of these paper-making artisans as possible.”

Barbara will later share the special qualities of Japanese Washi with artists and craftspeople from around Connecticut at CAW workshops.

Creative Arts Workshop (CAW) is a nonprofit regional center for the visual arts that has served the Greater New Haven area since 1961. As an anchor institution located in the heart of the award-winning Audubon Arts District, CAW offers a wide range of visual arts classes, with an active exhibition and public programming schedule. More than 1,700 people enroll annually in more than 350 courses. Thousands of visitors enjoy the free exhibitions.