Winter Hours: Wed - Sat; 10am - 4pm | 828-526-4949 | Get Directions 

Title: Executive Director

Karin Peterson is Executive Director of The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts. A sociologist of art, Dr. Peterson brings an interdisciplinary approach to visual culture and an appreciation for the resonating power of art for individuals and communities. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia (Charlottesville), an advanced degree from L’Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris, France), and is an alumna of Randolph-Macon Woman’s College (Lynchburg, Virginia).

Peterson is a career-long educator and has been a Professor of Sociology at the University of North Carolina Asheville for the past two decades. Recently, she served as Interim Provost of UNC School of the Arts, and previously held the same role at UNC Asheville. She is excited about The Bascom’s strategic plan, whose realization will allow the organization to serve the multiple communities in our region with innovative programming that impacts people of all ages, and that addresses the connections between the arts, education, and wellbeing.

Title: Deputy Executive Director
Phone: (828) 787-2881

Billy Love is the Deputy Executive Director for Mission and Programs at The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts (Highlands, NC). An arts educator and non-profit professional, Billy has more than 20 years of experience working at the intersection of communities, people, and learning. His roles at The Bascom span curatorial, educational, and outreach initiatives, which allow the organization to offer robust visual arts programs focused on the support of emerging artists and the building of essential creative and visual literacy skills for youth and adults. In his leadership is focused on fostering the artistic capacities of individuals and on engaging with local and regional entities to enhance the creative economy of Western North Carolina. A muralist and photographer, Billy received his Bachelors in Studio Art from Furman University (Greenville, SC) and his Masters in Art Education from Western Carolina University.

Title: Director of Ceramics
Phone: (828) 787-2892

Frank Vickery has been working in clay for over 20 years with multiple years devoted to instruction in clay arts. His personal art works are concentrated in wheel throwing but Frank also has extensive experience in hand building and creating and embellishing clay forms.

Frank has a Bachelors in Art Education and Bachelors in Fine Art from Winthrop University and a Masters of Fine Art from Western Carolina University.

Title: Director of Exhibitions
Phone: (828) 787-2878

Born and raised in Laurinburg, NC, Zachary is an artist with a knack for creative problem solving. After earning his Bachelors of Fine Arts in Metal Design from East Carolina University in 2013, he stuck around Greenville, NC for a couple of years working in a few of the art galleries and as a studio tech at Pitt Community College.

Zachary moved to the North Carolina mountains to attend Western Carolina University and received his Masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Western Carolina University in 2018. Zachary has instructed art history lecture classes, 3-D design studios, and Sculpture courses. While in graduate school he began to incorporate his interest in archaeology and museum studies in his sculptures and wrote his thesis on shifting museum dynamics and their relationship with the viewer.

Since starting at The Bascom as the Exhibition Manager in May 2018, Zachary is able to continue utilizing his skills to create on both sides of the gallery wall and remain engaged in the artistic community.

Title: Retail Manager
Phone: (828) 526-4949

Rebecca received her BA in Fine Art from the University of South Florida, Tampa. Her fields of focus were ceramics, serigraphy and art history. After a few years of creating and teaching ceramics, she spent 40 years as a graphic artist, advertising professional and event planner, ultimately transitioning to non-profit management. She received a number of regional and national awards from the American Advertising Federation and other professional organizations during her career.

Understanding the transformational impact of art in the lives of children and adults, Rebecca incorporated creative projects into many of her volunteer activities while in Florida and living in the Middle East.

Originally from the Cullasaja area, she has always loved her corner of paradise. Retiring in 2017, Rebecca and husband moved from St. Petersburg into her childhood home in Highlands. She joined The Bascom in October 2021 to continue her involvement in the arts, after realizing that she wasn’t ready for retirement.

Title: Marketing Manager
Phone: (828) 787-2866

Bianca Mitchell joined The Bascom as Marketing Manager in May of 2022. Bianca brings with her over 15 years of experience in marketing, design, and database management. Prior to joining The Bascom, Bianca served as the Director of Real Estate Operations at the Lake Toxaway Company where her responsibilities included print marketing, social media, and project management.

Recently, relocated to Highlands from Brevard, Bianca is herself a practicing artist, who works in two-dimensional and digital formats. Passionate about gardening, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors, Bianca embraces the vignettes of every day life to bring authenticity to her creative works.

Formally of Charlotte, NC, Bianca, like so many others before her, escaped city life in favor of the enchantment of the Blue Ridge Mountains. There is no place Bianca would rather be, than Highlands, NC where she will hone her skills as a visual storyteller while advancing the mission and programing of The Bascom.

Bianca received her Bachelor of Arts from Brevard College, summa cum laude.

Title: Guest Experience Associate
Phone: (828) 787-2864

Autumn is originally from Matthews, NC and relocated to Western North Carolina in 2017 to attend Western Carolina University. She graduated in Spring 2021 with degrees in History and Anthropology and certificates in public history and leadership.

While in school her areas of interest included museum studies, women’s history, and the discussion of difficult histories. Autumn interned at the Mountain Heritage Center on WCU’s campus where she worked to help create two exhibits, Rightfully Ours: Women's Suffrage in Western North Carolina, and NC Potters.

Since starting at The Bascom in summer of 2021 Autumn has been able to advance her knowledge of art and the functions and procedures of running an art institution. In the future she plans to attend graduate school for museum studies.

Title: Facilities Manager
Phone: (828) 787-2884

Maurice has been a contractor, a custom wood-worker, and a property manager in Highlands for 35 years. He enjoys camping and fishing with his three sons and spending time with his family. He has developed a passion for keeping the climate right and all of the IT up and running at The Bascom. He attended Rabun Gap Nacoochee School and lives in Scaly Mountain.

The Bascom Board of Directors

Dedicated Leadership, Informed Guidance

The Bascom operates in cooperation with a Board of Directors. Each of the members works towards the betterment of our institution, as well as serves on focused committees that further the individual goals of our mission. 

Board Photo 2


Ann Wrobleski


Margaret Denny



Bill Jump

Assistant Treasurer

Susan Tarver


Jo Hill

Andrew Adams, David Bock, Michael Crowe, Nancy Dyleski, Bob Gross, Kathleen Hohlstein, Maudie Huff, Barbara Jamison, Mark Mahaffey, Myron Mall, Carol Misner, Kirk Moore, Charlene Palmisano, Nancy Race, Becca Rieder, Bev Seinsheimer, C. Marie Sharpe, Mary Thompson, Ansley Tolleson, Marcia Weber, Hilary Wilkes

Share Your Bascom Experience with Us!

Whether you fell in love with a piece or were moved by an exhibit, inspired by an instructor, had a blast in our smART Space, or any other wonderful experience at The Bascom, we want to hear about it!

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Opening Hours

Exhibitions & Shop:
Wednesday - Saturday; 10am - 4pm

Studio Barn Hours:

Monday - Saturday 10 am - 5 pm
Sunday Noon - 5 pm

Find Us Online:


Visit: 323 Franklin Road
Highlands, NC 28741 (Map It)

Call: 828-526-4949 (Main)
828-787-2892 (Ceramics Studio)

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This project was supported by the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. Learn more at

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Funded in part by a grant from South Arts
in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts.