Kentucky Artisan Center and Giant Hand Sculptures
Date Visited: January 8, 2019
Address: 200 Artisan Way – Berea, KY 40403
GPS: 37.59664, -84.31112
Website: Kentucky Artisan Center
On July 30, 2003 a ribbon cutting ceremony marked the opening of the 25,000 square foot Kentucky Artisan Center in Berea. Lobby gallery exhibits showcase local artisans works and are usually educational, cultural or historical in content about Kentucky. Berea is known to call itself the “Folk Arts and Crafts Capital of Kentucky.”
The works of more than 800 artists from around the state are showcased and available for purchase in the center. A wide array of books, music, specialty foods and handmade goods are available for you to buy. If you would like to sit down and enjoy some food the Artisan Cafe & Grill is open from 9 am to 4 pm.
There is no admission charged to enter the center and browse the displays and goods for sale. The public bathrooms are very clean, but also only open when the center is. The Center is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. It closes at 5 pm on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
There are some absolutely gorgeous and creative handmade wares available for purchase here. The hubby is very happy we live in a pop up now instead of our sticks and bricks, because I would of spent a fortune in here. Somehow I have lost all the pics I took of the center. They seem to have just disappeared, but I still got pics of the hands from outside.
Outside the center on the sidewalk leading inside are two large hands on each side made of what I think is copper wire. They are a part of a public arts project titled “Show of Hands” which was created in 2003. There are a total of 12 of these large hands scattered throughout the town of Berea. Each one is approximately 6 feet tall.
Head to the Berea Welcome Center to collect a map to tour the town and see all the hands. There are also many iron and metal sculptures of mystical beasts and more located throughout the town for you to admire. We were only half-way through a long travel day so we didn’t get to explore the town. Hopefully we can hit it up on another drive through.