State Art Collection gets 12-day run at S.C. State Fair

And FOLKfabulous is back for third year


Funnel cake? Check. Corn dog? Check. Cotton candy? Check. Tyrone Geter? Check.  Wait, what? To help celebrate its 150th anniversary, the South Carolina State Fair invited the State Art Collection to show off iconic contemporary works by #SCartists in the shadow of the famed rocket. Artists who have exhibited in the State Fair’s annual exhibition dating back to the early 1960s, works that reflect aspects of fair culture, and some iconic pieces from the State Art Collection are featured in the Rosewoods Building at Pig Tales, Blackberry Winter, & the Cabinet of Curiosities today through Oct. 20. In keeping with the fair theme, fair guests are invited to spin the new S.C. Arts Commission spinning wheel. When the wheel stops on a work of art in the exhibition, search that work out. Snap a selfie with it, and share it with your networks on social media! The artists and works, an event rundown, and more are available at SouthCarolinaArts.com.

McKissick Museum celebrates return of FOLKfabulous

Join the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum at the South Carolina State Fair for FOLKFabulous@theFair. This year, the museum's signature folklife festival celebrates South Carolina’s rich textile arts heritage, including Native American, African American and Mennonite quilting traditions in conjunction with the McKissick exhibition, Piece by Piece: Quilts from the Permanent Collection. You’re invited to participate and engage with artists and cultural traditions that make the Palmetto State home! Come to the Rosewoods Building to enjoy arts displays, demonstrations and hands-on craft activities, concerts and hands-on music workshops. You won’t want to miss the chance to try your hand at making a story quilt block or contribute to our yarn-bombing display. You’ll also find music to move your heart and dancing feet at a Harvest Dance featuring old-time music by Andy Brooks, a bluegrass concert by the Carolina Rebels, and Gullah music and storytelling by internationally renowned performers Ron and Natalie Daise. Click here for complete information on FOLKfabulous@theFair.

Submitted material

Marion Co. issues RFP for art at planned memorial park

Visual artist sought for Sen. Clementa Pinckney Memorial Park

Submission deadline:
  • Postmark by Friday, Dec. 20, 2019
  • OR Hand deliver by Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, 5:30 p.m.

Vision

Clementa Carlos “Clem” Pinckney (July 30, 1973 – June 17, 2015) was a Democratic member of the South Carolina Senate, representing the 45th District from 2000 until his death in 2015. He was previously a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives from 1997 through 2000. Pinckney was a senior pastor at Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston. On June 17, 2015, Pinckney was murdered in a racially motivated mass shooting at an evening Bible study at Mother Emanuel A.M.E. in Charleston. This act of terrorism became the catalyst for South Carolina Legislature to enact legislation to remove the Confederate flag from flying in front of the South Carolina State House. Today the Clementa C. Pinckney Foundation and The Reverend Pinckney Scholarship Fund continue the works of “Clem” by supporting the spiritual, educational and emotional health of those in need. The Senator Clementa Pinckney Memorial Park shall serve as a memorial to the late Senator as a place of reflection, remembrance and a place of acceptance to all members of our shared society.

Design Elements

The Marion County Administration seeks to commission a free-standing outdoor work of art or installation to add to the beautification, redevelopment, and regeneration of downtown Marion. The work selected must be completed and fully installed by mid-2020. The selected work must be site-specific and constructed of weather-resistant materials.

Eligibility

This opportunity is open to visual artists, ages 18 and older.

The Site:

In mid-2020, the planned location for the park will be constructed between the Marion County Museum and the Marion County Council on Aging. The project will be a Marion County Park with a design that calls for a ¼-mile meandering walking path/trail, an open-air picnic structure, shade trees surrounding the large open lawn space, and ample parking. This projected site is in the heart of downtown Marion SC. The residents, business owners, and customers, and tourists can use the park for community events, walking, and jogging. The Senator Clementa Pinckney Memorial Park will create opportunities to encourage new and existing small business owners and entrepreneurs to invest in the Historic Downtown Marion Area. This space will be a venue for festivals, outdoor concerts, weddings, and local activities which will create new jobs. The project will offer opportunities built on new alliances, new partnerships, and a new understanding of the intersection of culture, community, equity, and economic development. Collaborate with HMRA to bring new businesses downtown, filling empty properties and to help existing businesses grow.

The Artist Selection Process

Semi-finalists will be selected by a panel consisting of representatives from The Arts Council of Marion County, Marion Museum, Historic Marion Revitalization Association, SC and private businesses. Semifinalists will be invited to submit more detailed applications, including scale drawings for review by the aforementioned panel. The panel will make a recommendation to the Board of Directors as to which proposal should be selected. Final Selection Criteria will be based on:
  • Artistic merit
  • Appropriateness to the site
  • Feasibility
  • Durability (appropriate for heavily used, outdoor site)
Required Application Materials In response to this RFP, applicants must submit the following:
  • Completed and signed cover sheet/certification form
  • Digital portfolio:
    • A link to a professional website or a jump drive with 10 digital images and title lists.
    • Artwork must be clearly labeled with the artist’s name, date of completion, materials and dimensions.
  • A written description of the proposed work (no more than one page)
  • Preliminary drawing of the proposed work (dimensions not to exceed 18” x 24”)
  • Proposed budget
  • Timeline for the project
  • Current biography and curriculum vitae (CV)
  • Names and contact information of two references (email and phone)
    • listing of commissioned and installed work in public or private collections completed within the last 10 years.
    • provide proof of insurance.
    • after ten years we are not obligated to keep the artwork.
    • the total cost of the project must not exceed $50,000

Budget

$50,000 for the total project including the artist’s commission, design, materials, fabrication, transportation, and installation.

Deadline for Submission

All submissions must be postmarked on 12/20/2019 or hand-delivered by 5:30 p.m. Mail to:

Marion County Administration 2523 East Hwy 76 Marion, SC 29571

Please note that applications will not be accepted by fax or email. All artists will be notified of the selection results by 1/31/2020. Installation to be completed by August 2020. Submissions can be hand-delivered to:

Marion County Administration 2523 East Hwy 76, Room 114D Marion, SC 29571 Link to image or image attached.


For more information

Willena Rembert Project Manager 2523 East Hwy 76 Marion, SC 29571 843.275.6072 wrembert@marionsc.org

Columbia Children’s Theatre names first executive director

Two additional staff added


Columbia Children’s Theatre (CCT) board of directors named Larry Hembree as the theatre’s first executive director. Hembree (right), who has been on the leadership staff for several other local arts organizations including Nickelodeon Theatre, S.C. Arts Commission, Arts Center of Kershaw County, and Trustus Theatre, assumed his new responsibilities Oct. 1. Hembree oversees administrative staff, strategic planning, board engagement, development and community outreach. He previously served as the theatre’s development director since January 2017. The board has also created two other new positions, hiring Ginny Herring as director of finance and Sean Taylor as director of marketing. “I am excited to help give our area’s youth a voice through their participation in the arts,” Hembree said. “Columbia Children’s Theatre has done a phenomenal job both producing a five-show season for youth and families by an adult professional theatre company (the only company of its kind in South Carolina) and, at the same time, creating opportunities to showcase youth in theatre productions." “This is an incredibly exciting time for CCT. This theatre plays a critically important part in the lives of so many young people and having someone with Larry’s stature as executive director will help CCT and its drive to give a voice to those young people through the arts,” CCT Board Chairmain Frank Braddock said. Founded in 2005, CCT first operated out of the former Sara Nance School (now the Katheryn M. Bellfield Booker Washington Heights Cultural Arts Center), an arts incubator run by the City of Columbia. Initial programming included professional theatre for youth and families, touring shows across the city and providing residencies and workshops in schools and parks. In 2009, the theatre expanded programming to include classes for youth and added a five-production season of shows featuring youth. Co-founders Jerry Stevenson and Jim Litzinger serve as artistic and technical directors, respectively. CCT has grown to support four administrative and eight artistic staff positions along with many volunteers and other contracted employees. CCT currently presents out of Richland Mall, next door to Barnes & Noble, in Forest Acres. The next production, Oct. 18-20, is “Les Misérables: School Edition,” featuring over 60 teens from across the Midlands. For more information on the theatre, visit columbiachildrenstheatre.com.

NEA announces ‘Big Read’ community reading program grants

Additions to the NEA Big Read Library include selections in honor of 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage

Application deadline: Wednesday, January 29, 2020
Are you a nonprofit organization interested in increasing community engagement, creating new partnerships, and celebrating great books? The 2020/2021 guidelines for National Endowment for the Arts Big Read grants are now available. This National Endowment for the Arts initiative, in partnership with Arts Midwest, supports community reading programs across the country, each designed around a single NEA Big Read book. In honor of the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage, the 2020/2021 list of NEA Big Read books will include classic literature by four female authors: My Ántonia by Willa Cather, The Essential Emily Dickinson (a selection of poems by Dickinson, introduced by Joyce Carol Oates), Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, and The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers. Also new for 2020-2021 is the addition of the novel Circe by Madeline Miller, a retelling of the life of a Greek mythological goddess, and An American Sunrise, a new collection of poems by U.S. poet laureate Joy Harjo, which will be available in place of her book How We Became Human. In total, 32 books will be available for NEA Big Read projects taking place between September 2020 and June 2021; the full list of titles is available in the guidelines on Art Midwest’s website, where potential applicants can also find full details on eligibility, how to apply, and application advice. The application deadline is Wednesday, January 29, 2020. In addition to libraries, eligible applicants include colleges and universities, arts organizations, museums, humanities councils, school districts, historical societies, and more—read the guidelines for complete eligibility information. “Hosting an NEA Big Read program has been shown to be a powerful way to build community and encourage dialogue on a variety of pertinent topics, from taking care of elderly parents, such as in Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, to the opioid crisis in Burning Bright, to the challenges some boys face at the brink of manhood in Hustle,” said Amy Stolls, director of literary arts at the Arts Endowment. All NEA Big Read programs include a series of events, ranging from lectures and book discussions to film screenings and performances, all designed to create opportunities for conversation and engagement among a wide range of community members. Visit the National Endowment for the Arts Big Read website for more information on the program— including book and author information, podcasts, and videos—as well as to read community stories from past NEA Big Read grantees.

About the National Endowment for the Arts Big Read

Since the program began in 2006, the National Endowment for the Arts has funded more than 1,500 NEA Big Read programs, providing more than $21 million to organizations nationwide. In addition, NEA Big Read activities have reached every Congressional district in the country. Over the past 13 years, grantees have leveraged more than $50 million in local matching funds to support their NEA Big Read programs. More than 5.7 million Americans have attended an NEA Big Read event, approximately 92,000 volunteers have participated at the local level, and 40,000 community organizations have partnered to make NEA Big Read activities possible. For more information about the NEA Big Read and to suggest a book, please visit arts.gov/neabigread.

About the National Endowment for the Arts

Established by Congress in 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the Arts Endowment supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit arts.gov to learn more.

About Arts Midwest

Arts Midwest, a nonprofit regional arts organization headquartered in Minneapolis, serves audiences, arts organizations and artists throughout the nine state region of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. One of six non-profit regional arts organizations in the United States, Arts Midwest's history spans more than 30 years. Arts Midwest promotes creativity, nurtures cultural leadership, and engages people in meaningful arts experiences, bringing vitality to Midwest communities and enriching people's lives. Annually, cultural programs initiated by Arts Midwest reach close to a million people, enhancing the quality of life in hundreds of cities, towns, and rural areas. Arts Midwest's high-quality cultural activities, in a spectrum of artistic genres, reach school children, university students, families, and adults of all ages.

Submitted material

CoroArt contest encourages experimentation

The COROART contest in the U.S. is underway


Coroplast Tape Corporation has delivered a variety of technical adhesive tapes to Winthrop University where visual art students of Shaun Cassidy, professor of fine arts, were invited to reinvent the materials in innovative ways. While there is no specific thematic content or subject direction given, the concept of COROART is focused on experimenting with modern and technical materials. The completed works of art will be displayed first at Coroplast Tape Corporation’s U.S. headquarters in Rock Hill. Select pieces will then be moved to the Arts Council of York County’s Center for the Arts where they will be on display from Nov. 20-24, 2019. A public reception and the COROART Awards presentation will be held at the Center for the Arts on Friday, Nov. 22, 2019 from 5-7:30 p.m. The students are contending for the COROART Award presented by the Coroplast Tape Corporation. These awards are accompanied by cash prizes funded by Coroplast, and include 1st Prize ($1,000), 2nd Prize ($500), and 3rd Prize ($250). The 2019 COROART Awards jury includes a panel of three judges: Ashley Beard (Arts Council of York County Board member, art teacher), Harriet Goode (artist, owner: Gallery 5), and Tom Stanley (artist, Winthrop University ). For more information about Coroplast’s commitment to the arts and COROART, visit https://www.coroplast-tapes.com/en/company/coroart-usa/.

2020 North Charleston Arts Fest seeks artists to perform or present

Application deadline: Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, 11:59 p.m. ET


The City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department is seeking artists in music, theatre, dance, visual art, media art, and literature to participate in the 2020 North Charleston Arts Fest to be held April 29-May 3 at various venues throughout North Charleston. National, regional, and local artists, cultural groups, and community organizations are welcome to submit an application to perform on stage or present their talents through programs such as exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations, workshops, and more. The application can be accessed at NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com/apply. Agents submitting applications on behalf of two or more artists or groups should contact the Cultural Arts Department at 843.740.5854 or culturalarts@northcharleston.org for special application instructions. There is NO fee to apply. Applications will be accepted through the online submission platform (link) until midnight on Sunday, December 15, 2019. Artists in need of assistance with any part of the application process may contact the Cultural Arts Department to schedule a one-on-one meeting, which can be conducted over the phone or in person. The North Charleston Arts Fest, now entering its 38th year, is one of the most comprehensive arts festivals in the state, drawing more than 30,000 residents and visitors annually. The festival features a fabulous array of events and activities such as:
  • concerts,
  • theatre presentations,
  • exhibitions and installations,
  • children’s programs,
  • film screenings,
  • workshops and demonstrations,
  • and more.
Flagship events include the World Arts Expo at Riverfront Park, highlighting cultures from around the globe, the Arty Block Party on East Montague Avenue, which combines a street dance and art market, and the Exhibition Encore at the Charleston Area Convention Center, which serves as a closing celebration for the numerous visual art exhibitions on display throughout the entirety of the festival. The Arts Fest review panel will select applicants from all art disciplines to create a mix of free and ticketed events that will work well in the available venues and are geared to meet the interests of a cross-section of ages, cultures, and backgrounds. Proposals for new concepts or programs are encouraged.
For more information about the North Charleston Arts Fest and other participation opportunities visit NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com or contact the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department office at 843.740.5854 or culturalarts@northcharleston.org.

Leo Twiggs to talk art and race in Charlotte tonight

The Mint Museum in Charlotte is to be host of a conversation on art and race with Leo Twiggs of Orangeburg tonight from 6-9 p.m. Twiggs, recipient of two Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts, sits down with host Sarah Delia of WFAE 90.7FM. The program is inspired by the work of art entitled “Conversation”, created by Dr. Twiggs following his phenomenal exhibition “Requiem for Mother Emanuel” at the Mint Museum Randolph. Requiem was his artistic response to the massacre of nine church members during a prayer meeting in the historical Charleston house of worship, Mother Emanuel AME Church. Dr. Twiggs established the Art Department at South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, South Carolina and its art museum. Read more about the event here.  Story credit to WFAE.

Decorated #SCartists to present at State Fair

Philip Mullen, Tyrone Geter to hold court


Two of South Carolina’s most decorated and recognized visual artists will make presentations this week about their State Art Collection works now on exhibit at the South Carolina State Fair.

Philip Mullen | Wednesday, Oct. 16 | 1:30 p.m.

Philip Mullen belongs to the South Carolina Arts Commission’s first class of fellowship recipients in 1977. Represented in New York for 35 years by David Findlay Galleries, he’s had 15 solo exhibitions there. If you’ve ever been to the Koger Center, his large artwork adorns the lobby walls. As part of the Artist Talks Series at the South Carolina State Fair, he will discuss Wet Fog, on display at the State Fair exhibition; his painting technique; and making it in New York.

Tyrone Geter | Friday, Oct. 18 | 5 p.m.

Tyrone Geter is not a South Carolina native, but he’s made it home after teaching and curating the art gallery at Benedict College since 1999. The Elgin artist received the state’s highest arts award, the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts, just this spring. His portrait of Gani Odutokun, a contemporary Nigerian painter and friend, will jump-start his discussion about his career as an artist in Nigeria and the U.S. Geter will also touch on how his work evolved from straight painting and drawings to mixed media techniques. Both presentations take place in the Rosewoods Building at the State Fairgrounds. Fair admission is required, but there is no additional fee for the talks.
Pig Tales, Blackberry Winter, & the Cabinet of Curiosities is an exhibition of the State Art Collection appearing at the South Carolina State Fair from Oct. 9 to 20, 2019.

Unique partnership to celebrate South Carolina’s hip-hop culture

Love, Peace & Hip-Hop and Columbia Museum of Art announce partnership


Love, Peace & Hip-Hop and Columbia Museum of Art (CMA) announce a groundbreaking new project entitled “TRIBE: A Celebration of South Carolina Hip-Hop Culture.” A unique partnership spanning the fields of music, visual art, dance, and live performance, TRIBE celebrates the core elements of hip-hop culture in South Carolina. The initial offering from the TRIBE project is Love, Peace & Hip-Hop founder FatRat Da Czar’s double-CD studio album, also entitled TRIBE, which will release on Tuesday, Nov. 12. The album’s 25 tracks feature artists from across the state and across generations of South Carolina hip-hop and was inspired by the TRIBE exhibition. As part of the album release, Czar will perform on Nov. 15 at CMA’s Arts and Draughts, bringing on stage some of South Carolina’s most elite past, present, and future hip-hop artists. “In the world of hip-hop, the time for the Carolinas is now,” said FatRat Da Czar (right), founder of Love, Peace & Hip-Hop. “It’s a perfect time to celebrate our contribution to the international scene as well as honor the pioneers who paved the way.” “A celebration of hip-hop culture is a celebration of art and people, which is what the TRIBE project is at its core. I’m excited for the Columbia Museum of Art to expand upon the partnership we launched last April with Love, Peace & Hip-Hop,” said Joelle Ryan-Cook, deputy director and director of external affairs for the Columbia Museum of Art. “The upcoming TRIBE album release at the November Arts & Draughts is a great way to invite music lovers into the museum to an event that is at its best when community partners help co-create a dynamic and unique experience for everyone who attends.”

History

In 2019, the hip-hop scene in the Carolinas has ascended from the underground to mainstream national success, most notably with Charlotte artist DaBaby and Columbia producer Jetsonmade charting with number one Billboard Hot 100 breakout hits twice in a row. In addition, Renni Rucci, who hails from Hopkins, signed with Quality Control in March 2018, releasing her debut album Big Renni in May 2019. Columbia artist Blacc Zacc recently inked a deal with Interscope, the record label for Dr. Dre, Tupac, Eminem, and 50 Cent. For a state and region that has been so far off the radar nationally, this is a prime time to pause and reflect upon the founders and architects of South Carolina hip-hop. The TRIBE album, inspired by the process of assembling and curating the upcoming TRIBE exhibition, was an opportunity for Czar to work with featured artists across the full spectrum of South Carolina’s hip-hop history. As part of his album release, FatRat Da Czar will perform on Friday, November 15 at Columbia Museum’s Arts and Draughts, bringing on stage some of South Carolina’s most elite past, present, and future hip-hop artists. The second phase of the project is a mixed-media exhibition, “TRIBE: A Celebration of South Carolina Hip-Hop Culture,” which will be on view at the Columbia Museum of Art from January 18 through April 12, 2020. This exhibition will feature visual art elements, as well as artifacts from South Carolina hip-hop history. Additional planned elements of the TRIBE project include a documentary film featuring interviews with influential South Carolina hip-hop figures, as well as community dialogues and roundtables, and more. This project is supported by a grant from the Knight Foundation Fund and by a Connected Communities grant at Central Carolina Community Foundation.

About FatRat Da Czar

FatRat Da Czar is a recording artist and producer, entrepreneur, and hip-hop activist based out of Columbia. Czar’s music career has spanned over two decades, and his role as an acclaimed solo artist was solidified with the release of Da Cold War album trilogy (2007-2012). In addition to opening for acts to include Notorious B.I.G., Snoop Dogg, and Lauryn Hill, Czar has also recorded and mixed sessions as chief engineer at The Boom Room for national artists ranging from KRS-One to Kevin Gates. In 2013, Czar co-founded World Famous Hip-Hop Family Day, a free annual festival dedicated to celebrating hip-hop culture that has delivered artists such as KRS-One, SugarHill Gang, Kid N Play, MC Lyte, and Big Daddy Kane to crowds of 18,000+ on Columbia’s Main Street.

About Love Peace & Hip-Hop

The goal of Love, Peace & Hip-Hop is to ensure that hip-hop, represented properly, can be a medium through which the community can come together, all ages and races, for a day of peace, love, and unity, and having fun. This is accomplished by combining some of the best and brightest live performers, DJs, B-Boy dance crews, hip-hop visual artists, and craft and fashion vendors to create South Carolina’s most unique and entertaining community experience at World Famous Hip-Hop Family Day. To learn more, visit www.lovepeacehiphop.com.

About the Columbia Museum of Art

The Columbia Museum of Art is a charitable nonprofit organization dedicated to lifelong learning and community  enrichment for all. Located in the heart of downtown Columbia, S.C., the CMA ranks among the leading art institutions in the country and is distinguished by its innovative exhibitions and creative educational programs. At the heart of the CMA and its programs is its collection, which encompasses 7,000 works and spans 5,000 years of art history. Established in 1950, the CMA now welcomes more than 150,000 visitors annually and is a catalyst for community creativity and education, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds. It is the recipient of a National Medal from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, a National Art Education Association award for its contributions to arts education, a National Park Foundation Award, and two Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts for outstanding contributions to the arts in South Carolina. In order to serve even more audiences, the CMA recently underwent a transformation. Funded by a successful capital campaign, the two-year renovation project garnered new collection galleries with a progressive thematic layout, new studios for artmaking, cutting-edge program and event spaces, an entrance on Main Street, and a revamped CMA shop. Overall, more than 15,000 square feet of functional space were added to the building’s existing footprint. To learn more, visit columbiamuseum.org.

Grants Roundup: Deadlines for the Week of Oct. 14

Though far from the only thing, grants are among the main things we do here. Because of their importance in our work, and what they mean to so many of you, The Hub wants to help keep Arts Commission grants top-of-mind and reduce the number of times people say, "If only we'd known about (X or Y) grant!" We can't reach everybody, but we can try. On Mondays with deadlines on the horizon, "Grants Roundup" highlights first what grants are due that week and then includes what's coming later in increments.

This week

These are to serve mainly as final reminders to finish in-progress applications. Most grant applications simply cannot be undertaken well in this short a time frame. Consult an appropriate member of our team with questions.
  • n/a

Next week

  • n/a

Next 30(ish)

Rolling Deadlines

Important Notes

  • You are encouraged to also consult the SCAC grants page for up-to-date information on all grant deadlines (subject to change) and deadlines for non-grant programs.
  • For next steps, grant guidance, and more information, consult the appropriate member of our team if you are an artist or represent local organizations, an educational institution, or a non-arts business or organization offering arts programming.

#SCartists sweep top prizes at WMAC’s first juried show

The first-place winner in West Main Artists Co-op’s first four-state juried art exhibit -- WMAC 2019 -- is Cindy Shute of Lockhart, SC, for her oil-on-linen painting Peacemaker: Hrair Balian. She receives a cash prize of $2,500 that was given in memory of Frank P. Cyrill, Jr. Second prize of $1,000 was taken by Gordon Dohm of Greenville for his photograph Fungi Fantasy. The third-place prize of $500 was won by Tracey M. Timmons of Spartanburg for Manacle of Justice, a bracelet made of vitreous enamel, copper, silver, brass, and photography. The seven merit awards of $100 and $250 went to Mark Flowers of Alexander, NC; Lee Sipe of Columbia; Sabrina Barilone of Macon, Georgia; Tom Dimond of Seneca; Christina Dixon of Roebuck; David Stuart of North Augusta; and Martha Worth of Hilton Head.


WMAC 2019 opened on Saturday, Sept. 14, and closes Saturday, Oct. 19. It was open to all adult visual artists in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee. Two-hundred-forty-one (241) artists from the four states applied, and 66 were admitted into the show based on the judgement of jurors Ann DerGara and  Mike Vatalaro. The winners were announced Saturday, Sept. 21, during a reception and awards ceremony. Seventy-four (74) works of art in this exhibit are on display at the Co-op, which is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. There is no charge to see the exhibitions. In their jurors’ statements, DerGara said, “ I am amazed at the quality of work that was entered. I think that opening the show to additional states has made this become an important show for the region and Spartanburg. The arts are growing rapidly in the region and this show will make Spartanburg known as art venue as well as Asheville and Greenville. As the Arts grow so does the economy. WMAC produced this show and jury with professionalism and expertise.” "The very nature of a juried exhibition celebrates a broad range of medium and imagery. I enjoyed the task of identifying works that well represented the mediums chosen, techniques accomplished and the subjects investigated. The exhibition reveals a broad selection of work which I believe demonstrate an individual vision within both conventional and experimental genres. I was very impressed by the quality and richness demonstrated in all of the mediums displayed. I hope you will find each work invites close examination and has something unique to offer," Vatalaro said. A list of all accepted work can be found online at WestMainArtists.org. “We could not be happier with our first juried show,” Chairwoman Beth Regula said. “This is something we had wanted to do for several years, and it took more than a year of planning, but it was worth it. Having a show of this magnitude and with these cash prizes establishes West Main Artists Co-op as an art agency that is leading Spartanburg in its quest to be an art Mecca in South Carolina and throughout the South. It says we have the creativity, the know-how, the professionalism, the resources, and the desire to take the Co-op to the next level. Next year will be even better!”
“I’m so excited to be a part of WMAC’s world,” Shute said. “This first exhibition was as professionally conducted as I have ever seen. When I was told I was Best in Show, at the time, honestly, I was shocked. It’s not that I didn’t think my painting is good. As a professional artists mature, we know our good work from our less successful efforts—I think that’s a key part of being a professional. So I wasn’t surprised to have been included in the show. “When I arrived that evening and saw the body of work I was thrilled. Virtually every piece in the exhibition is good—very good. A couple of pieces took my breath away. So, I felt particularly honored to be included. With Peacemaker, I had pushed myself into a new space with portraiture. In my early work I tended to avoid background, contextual elements, thinking at the time that the subject should convey their story a priori—that the essence of the sitter should be codified in the presentation of their likeness, and if successful, the minimalist approach would say everything that needed to be said. So this new approach for me, including symbolic elements to tell the story, was a big leap. “I honestly feel validated,” she continued. “I wasn’t sure if the piece worked. So now I’m really charged up about this new direction, and ready to take on more portrait-stories. And I’m so very grateful to WMAC for giving me a big hug along the way!”
The Co-op is a membership-based nonprofit arts agency with more than 50 members, who are visual artists and performing artists. It is housed in a former Baptist church near downtown Spartanburg on West Main Street. Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, the Co-op houses  31 artists studios, two stages, three galleries, a printery, a ceramics studio, and the largest collection of for-sale locally made art in Spartanburg. Each month, the Co-op normally installs three exhibits by its members and guest artists. For more, visit the Co-op's website by clicking here.