Every few years, the Ohio Craft Museum hosts an exhibition that turns the spotlight on the young artists who are springing from Ohio's colleges.

The museum's new show, "In the Forefront: Emerging Ohio Artists," presents the latest group -- the class of 2018, so to speak.

"We feel that one of the missions of the Ohio Craft Museum and Ohio Designer Craftsmen is to support emerging artists and give them an opportunity to participate in a museum exhibition and get presented to the public," museum director Betty Talbott said.

"What's really exciting and invigorating when I look at the collection of pieces we're showing is that these young artists have such a fresh vision," Talbott said. "Many of them are using materials and techniques that are expanding the boundaries of what's traditionally been done in creating fine craft.

"We are showing artists who use window-screen material to make sculptures or who use the shapes of eyeglasses and reimagine them as sculptures," she said.

The exhibition features works by 27 artists under the age of 35 who got their start on college campuses throughout Ohio.

Some are recent graduates; others are participating in the exhibition following a break they took after completing graduate school, Talbott said.

"They come from schools in all corners of Ohio, including Kent State, Ohio University, Bowling Green and right here in Columbus at Ohio State," she said.

Columbus glass artist Michael Hric creates glass vessels that combine white frosted glass with another bright color.

"The combination of a vibrant blue, black or yellow color with the softer frosted color creates a striking vision in his work," Talbott said.

Other featured artists include Alison Fawcett, a Ohio University graduate who creates functional ceramics; and fiber artist Katlin Rothacher, from Kent State University, who specializes in wall hangings.

For collectors, the exhibition offers the opportunity to purchase pieces by young artists before their work becomes better known, Talbott said.

"I know several of these artists are going to be making a big splash in the coming years," she said.

The exhibition will run through March 18 at the museum, 1665 W. Fifth Ave. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 1 to 4 p.m. weekends. Admission and parking are free.

For more information, visit ohiocraft.org.

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