Celebrating 50 years!

From April 2017 through June 2018, the South Carolina Arts Commission is celebrating 50 years of public support for the arts. The 50th anniversary celebration includes kick-off events in Charleston, Columbia, and Greenville, plus 15 months of exhibitions and performances showcasing the arts around the state.  Check out the calendar of events and stay tuned for updates! Gov. Robert E. McNair signs legislation creating the S.C. Arts Commission. Also shown, Nick Zeigler, left and Marvin Trapp. Gov. Robert E. McNair signs legislation creating the S.C. Arts Commission. Also shown, Nick Zeigler, left and Marvin Trapp. On June 7, 1967, Governor Robert E. McNair signed legislation creating the South Carolina Arts Commission, beginning a new era of public support for the arts in the Palmetto State. The legislation declared that the State of South Carolina would ensure that the arts “continue to grow and play an ever more significant part in the welfare and educational experiences of our citizens." For 50 years, the Arts Commission has joined with individuals, institutions and professional organizations to advance the state’s commitment to create a thriving arts environment that benefits all citizens. “The Arts Commission’s longevity is due in part to years of bipartisan support in the General Assembly,” said Executive Director Ken May. “Our state legislature recognizes that the people and communities they serve benefit in many ways from their investment in the arts, and they understand that the return includes a creative industry with a core impact of $9.2 billion and 78,682 jobs. That represents approximately $400 million in tax revenue.” Artists and arts professionals are the workforce of the South Carolina’s creative industries.  “The artists and organizations providing arts experiences in cities, towns and rural communities enhance the quality of life and produce economic activity,” said May. “They also attract visitors and tourists who shop, eat and stay overnight.” State support for the arts has also paid off in the classroom. “Since 1987, the Arts Commission has strategically invested in arts education, providing grants and leadership through the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project, to enable schools to implement the arts as part of the core curriculum,” said May. “Research shows that the arts help young people learn critical thinking, communication, creativity and perseverance -- skills they need to be successful in work and life. The state’s commitment to arts education pays dividends in the form of our state’s future workforce.” The future of the arts will be a theme throughout the anniversary. “The anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on what has been accomplished with 50 years of uninterrupted state support for the arts, and we have a great deal to celebrate,” said May. “The anniversary year is also an opportunity to plan for the future. The Arts Commission’s ongoing work, along with upcoming new programs, will help connect artists to additional sources of small business capital, establish the arts as economic drivers in rural communities, and assist arts organizations with professional development needs as a wave of baby boomers retires. We are poised to make the most of the next 50 years of public support for the arts.” For more information about the 50th anniversary, visit SouthCarolinaArts.com/50.

Creative Pillars forum coming to Hartsville

“What are some of the pillars needed in a community for a creative professional to have a high quality of life?” That’s the question the South Carolina Arts Alliance is asking at a Creative Pillars forum in Hartsville August 8. The free forum takes place at Black Creek Arts Council from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Advance registration is requested and is available on the Arts Alliance’s website, www.scartsalliance.net. The forums, which are open to any creative professional or those with an interest in a creative field, will include group activities meant to identify key amenities that help attract and retain creative professionals and targeted discussions to dive deeper into specific topics. The Arts Alliance is interested in hearing from every kind of creative professional, from the freelance graphic designer to the touring musician to the nonprofit fundraising professional. “We wanted to create a way to gather insight into areas other than pure arts and culture and how they play a role in the quality of life for a creative professional,” said GP McLeer, SCAA’s executive director. “We know that a high value on arts and culture is important, but what about access to healthcare, public safety, recreation, or even trash pick up – where do these kinds of issues lie in the hierarchy for the creative professional? Whether you’re an architect, designer, actor, musician, nonprofit arts manager, or even a board member, this is an important discussion to have as people look for ways to effectively make a difference in their community.” Creative Pillars is also serving as a pilot for a new statewide leadership development program, CreativeSC, being planned by the South Carolina Arts Alliance in partnership with the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the University of South Carolina, and Together SC, with additional partners expected to join in the coming months. The comprehensive program will include networking, workshops/forums, and a selective leadership program. The Arts Alliance is targeting an early fall 2017 launch of CreativeSC. The series is supported by a grant by the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. About the South Carolina Arts Alliance The South Carolina Arts Alliance is the only statewide nonprofit dedicated to advancing the arts for all South Carolinians through advocacy, leadership development, and public awareness. The SCAA is housed at the Younts Center for Performing Arts in Fountain Inn, SC.

Greenwood Performing Arts executive director stepping down; will be teaching art in school

From the Greenwood Index Journal Article and photo by St. Claire Donaghy
After six years at the helm of Greenwood Performing Arts, Cecily Bradford Ferguson is stepping down July 31 to focus efforts fully on her art classroom and teaching.
“If you love what you do, it makes you more motivated to learn new things,” Ferguson said, noting she’s learned a lot in her time with GPA, including how to use small business management software. “I have been really happy to see lots of things happen during my time with GPA that I had as goals for the organization...I think I’m going out on a good note.” A nonprofit, Greenwood Performing Arts celebrated its 70th anniversary this year with a gala. Its mission is to present diverse professional artistic performances that entertain and educate, to enhance area quality of life. Funded in part by donor and sponsor contributions, GPA is also supported through the City of Greenwood, Greenwood County, and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. Fundraising for GPA is key, Ferguson said, noting ticket prices don’t fully cover costs of performances. “Approximately 800 people attended our June antiques show and sale that included vendors from all over,” Ferguson said. “One of my favorite pieces was a blue Andrew Wyeth painting. It was breathtakingly beautiful and, as an art teacher, I really appreciated it. To see the types of things that were there was educational.” Throughout the event, local musicians and vocalists performed. Ferguson said goals met during her six years include:
  • Developing an updated logo and brand, with help from Lander University graphic arts students.
  • Bringing in nationally recognized performers such as Sandi Patty, 2015 Grammy winner Mike Farris, New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players, with a full orchestra,
  • and the Atlanta Pops Orchestra with John Driskell Hopkins.
  • Finding space for the organization in Uptown Greenwood’s cultural arts district. GPA’s offices are in the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce and its performances are now staged at Greenwood Community Theatre. Previously, they were at Lander University’s Josephine B. Abney Cultural Center Auditorium.
  • Successfully completing two fundraisers, including an anniversary gala with beloved Greenwood native performers Keith Jameson, Nat Chandler and Ethan Flowe and the recent Antiques Vintage Design Show and Sale during the second week of the South Carolina Festival of Flowers.
Ferguson said she notified GPA board members in May of her decision to resign as executive director. The job opening has been posted and resumes are being accepted. Outgoing GPA board president, Lisa Sanders, said she’s excited for Ferguson to be able to return to the classroom. “Those students are fortunate to be in the hands of a gifted artist,” Sanders said. “I’m really tickled she has said she will stay involved with Greenwood Performing Arts. I look forward to seeing what the future holds. “Cecily just has such a passion for all the arts,” Sanders added. “She was with us from the transition from Lander to the community theater and she brought performers from all over the world to Greenwood. She formed partnerships with different local organizations and collaborated.” Sanders said several people who’ve taken part in GPA fundraisers, namely the antiques show and vintage design sale, have indicated they would like to participate again. “She has been instrumental in bringing the performing arts to a new level in Greenwood,” Sanders said. “It’s exciting to see what the next chapter holds.” Ferguson said her successor doesn’t have to be an artist or performer, but should be someone with a love for the arts and the creative process. Ferguson said it’s also important to know the community. “If you expect the same things that go over well in Greenville to do so here, they might not,” she said. The caliber of entertainment brought to the stage has often also brought “super fans” of some of the acts to Greenwood to see shows, Ferguson said, noting these devoted fans travel from far and wide to follow their favorites on tour. “That happened last season with Melinda Doolittle, an American Idol finalist,” Ferguson said. “People from three different parts of the U.S. attended both her outreach and performance here.” Ferguson said as executive director of an arts-related nonprofit “you quickly learn not to be awestruck” by famous performers. She’s shuttled a Dancing with the Stars performer from the airport and kept watch over a multi-million dollar violin while violinist Ray Chen grabbed a bite to eat, and she received a handwritten thank you note from Sandi Patty. Keeping ticket prices affordable and making art available for everyone, especially children, is important, Ferguson said, noting intergenerational outreach is a key component of the present day GPA. It brings together senior adults and school children, with the performers. “It’s important too that who you put on stage mirrors the demographics of the community,” Ferguson said. “That’s one of the things we’ve been working on. “When we had the Crystal Trio perform this past season, it was really neat to see children and older adults trying to play the group’s specially made glass instruments from Russia,” Ferguson continued. “Some students had a better grip on how to do it and they were showing the seniors. It was neat to see that, and they were all awwsking questions.” In conjunction with GPA, while a sophomore theater major at Lander University, Mary Evan Giles took a master class with Franc D’Ambrosio, an American singer and actor, best known for his role in the stage version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “The Phantom of the Opera.” “It was really cool to be able to receive feedback from him when we sang for him individually,” Giles, 23, said. “I was completely shocked when he chose me to sing at his (GPA) concert the following night.” Ferguson said everyone who participated in that master class was profoundly impacted. “It was one of the most incredible things I’ve seen,” Ferguson said. “These performers are incredibly hard workers and most are very, very humble. Many take selfies with the entire audience in the background behind them and meet them after the show.” Ferguson, 58, of Abbeville, is a graphic artist who has worked as a teacher in Greenville and Abbeville county school districts. She was assistant principal and on-site supervisor for the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice middle and high school programs at a juvenile facility formerly in Greenwood. For five years, she was principal of McCormick Middle School. She retired from that position in 2009 and returned to the Abbeville school district to teach art at Wright Middle School. She is a married mother to four children, all of whom enjoy the arts, Ferguson said. “I have always loved the education system,” Ferguson said. “I’ve loved it as a teacher and principal both. I’m happy to be able to go back to the classroom full-time, teaching art at Wright Middle School.” For two years now, Ferguson noted she has been teaching in the morning and working for GPA in the afternoons. “It will be nice to have one full-time job,” she said. Ferguson received a bachelor’s degree in studio art and a master’s in education from Furman University. At Furman, she got involved with a social activities board, negotiating contracts with nationally known performers. Ferguson has long been a patron of the arts, attending a variety of performances at different venues and acting in Abbeville Opera House productions. She’s also an accomplished calligrapher. “I love art in all forms and fashions,” Ferguson said. “Every well-rounded individual needs exposure to the arts, both performing and visual arts...There’s merit to all. So much today is seen on a screen. Nothing can compare to live performance.”

Statewide Arts Conference to feature two national keynote speakers

Special anniversary pricing of $50 is valid through July 21. The Statewide Arts Conference will feature two national leaders as keynote speakers: Dr. Jane Chu, (left) Chairman, National Endowment for the Arts, and Elizabeth Merritt, (right) Founding Director, Center for the Future of Museums and Vice President for Strategic Foresight, American Alliance of Museums. Merritt will also lead a session during the conference. The conference kicks off at the S.C. State Museum in Columbia's Vista Cultural District Thursday, September 14 with an evening plenary and a reception for the exhibition Eclipsing 50: The State Art Collection 1967-2017. The conference continues Friday, September 15 with a full day of sessions and museum experiences. A sample of conference sessions:

  • South Carolina's Creative Cluster: A Look at New Data About the Arts and Economic Development
  • Making Your Life as an Artist: A Guide to Building a Balanced, Sustainable Artistic Life
  • Advocacy and NASCAR
  • Recycle & Renew: Hands on Art Making
  • Peering Into the Financial Future - Finding New Strategies for Sustainable Support
  • Moonshot! Exploring the State Art Collection in Eclipsing 50
  • Have Exhibition, Will Travel
The conference also includes customized tours and presentations by State Museum staff members. Take advantage of special anniversary pricing!  Registration is only $50 through July 21. After July 21, registration is $75 per person ($65 per person for two or more participants who register at the same time.) Area hotels are offering special rates  for conference attendees. Find out more and register today! Thank you to Wells Fargo, our Statewide Arts Conference sponsor.

SC Arts Commission seeking Poetry Out Loud coordinator

Application deadline is Aug. 14. The South Carolina Arts Commission is hiring a part-time Poetry Out Loud coordinator to manage and implement the statewide Poetry Out Loud (POL) program and assist with arts education programs. Working under the supervision of the Arts Education Program Director, the POL coordinator plays a vital role in working with national, state, and regional partners, teachers, and students. Duties include not be limited to:

  • Work extensively with Arts Education Program Director, regional, and state partners to administer the Poetry Out Loud program throughout the state;
  • Work with Arts Education Program Director to develop new Poetry Out Loud partnerships;
  • Increase awareness of and participation in the Poetry Out Loud program, specifically in school districts that have not participated in the past three years;
  • Research and implement alternative participation opportunities for students whose schools do not participate in the Poetry Out Loud program;
  • Serve as liaison for participating Poetry Out Loud teachers and notify them of important information related to regional competitions, state finals, national finals, and future dates;
  • Supervise regional partners in the organization and execution of three Poetry Out Loud regional competitions; work with regional partners to ensure all regional partner responsibilities, expectations, and programmatic goals are met; collect final reports from regional partners;
  • Work with Poetry Out Loud fiscal agent to ensure payment is delivered on time to regional partners;
  • Coordinate arts education events, including but not limited to Poetry Out Loud state final competition;
  • Work with Communications Director to develop a Poetry Out Loud marketing plan; write and distribute press releases for events;
  • Manage social media engagement for Poetry Out Loud program;
  • Work with Arts Education Program Director, Communications Director, and Grants Office staff to create grant and program webinars;
  • Coordinate with SCAC Project Team for administrative and/or project assistance in a timely manner;
  • Coordinate with Poetry Out Loud state champion and her/his teacher to ensure s/he registers for National Competition;
  • Coordinate coaching opportunities for Poetry Out Loud regional finalists in preparation for the state finals competition and for state finalist in preparation for the national finals competition;
  • Attend Poetry Out Loud National Finals in Washington, DC as SCAC representative;
  • Prepare required Poetry Out Loud Final Descriptive Report for National Endowment for the Arts;
  • Work with Arts Education Program Director to execute arts education special projects;
  • Other Poetry Out Loud and arts education administrative duties as assigned.
Find the complete application and apply online.

City of North Charleston Seeking 2017/18 Artist-in-Residence

The City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department is seeking a visual artist to serve as the Artist-in-Residence for fiscal year 2017/18. The City’s Artist-in-Residence serves as a key resource for the department’s outreach programs, especially in the area of art instruction. The selected artist will share his/her unique skills, talents, and experiences by providing free visual art residencies, workshops, and demonstrations to public schools, recreation facilities, and community groups within the city limits of North Charleston. Local visual artists with a willingness to share their talents and an ability to work with students of all ages are invited to apply for the part-time, contracted position by July 21. At the written request of art teachers and school liaisons, the Artist-in-Residence will conduct visual art residencies at North Charleston schools throughout the 2017/18 school year. Additional workshops will be coordinated at the request of community groups, as well as during the 2018 North Charleston Arts Fest. In addition, the Artist-in-Residence has the option to present an exhibition of his/her work at the North Charleston City Gallery from December 2017 through January 2018. Additional exhibition opportunities are available during the North Charleston Arts Fest in May. Past artists who served in the position include Caroline M. Self (2016/17), Daryle Halbert (2015/16), Alexandra Roberts (2014/15), Charlynn Knight (2013/14), Kristy Bishop (2012/13), Lori Starnes Isom (2011/12), Deborah Meyer (2010/11), and Robert Maniscalco (2009/10). Rate of pay for this part-time, contracted position is $25 an hour for up to 300 hours completed from August 2017 through June 2018. Program supplies are provided. A background check is required. Interested artists should submit quality photographs or digital images of their work along with a current résumé or CV by 5 p.m. on Friday, July 21, 2017. Application materials may be emailed to kyeadon@northcharleston.org or mailed to the attention of Krystal Yeadon at City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, PO Box 190016, North Charleston, SC, 29419-9016. For more information about the Artist-in-Residence program, or the department’s other programs, exhibits, and events, visit the Arts & Culture section of the City’s website at www.northcharleston.org or call 843-740-5854.

Aiken County Public Schools seeks fine arts coordinator

Aiken County Public Schools is seeking a fine arts coordinator to provide leadership in developing, achieving, and maintaining strong fine arts programs and special projects. Essential duties and responsibilities:

  • Coordinates, facilitates, implements, and evaluates the summer acGateway program, including, but not limited to the following tasks:
    • Assists the Department of Federal Programs with the annual update to the District’s Gifted and Talented Artistic Plan
    • Visits schools to create an awareness and interest in the program
    • Works with school-level coordinators in the application process
    • Sets up the program calendar in accordance with State regulations, including audition and acceptance dates
    • Updates a brochure to inform students and parents of the program
    • Reviews, revises, and updates all application forms
    • Submits all acGateway information to be posted on the District’s website
    • Receives, reviews, and evaluates all student application
    • Sets up audition schedule and secures judges according to the recommendations in the State Regulations and Best Practices Manual
    • Conducts auditions and works with Evaluation and Placement Team to qualify students
    • Notifies students and parents of auditions, acceptance/non-acceptance and program details
    • Interviews and hires teachers
    • Coordinates dates and times of program with acGateway site principal
    • Evaluates the program
    • Submits timesheet/payroll documentation to the acGateway coordinator at conclusion of Program
    • Submits all student information to the Office of Federal Programs for SCDE data submission
    • Meets with Department of Federal Program staff at the conclusion of the acGateway program to debrief concerning program strengths and challenges
  • Assists in the implementation of quality instructional programs throughout the district
  • Determines in-service needs for personnel and assists in organizing professional development
  • Arranges and conducts professional development sessions, as needed
  • Reviews and develops materials to aid in instruction
  • Maintains and supervises an inventory of fine arts materials and equipment and assists in reviewing needs for the district and schools
  • Stays abreast of current curricular and methodology changes in instruction through research and study
  • Meets with department heads, grade chairpersons, or other designated staff members to ensure continuous communication, information distribution, and feedback concerning assigned curriculum responsibility
  • Actively participates in fine arts and special project programs held within the district
  • Actively participates in and facilitates curriculum updates and trainings
  • Assists with the implementation of a community-wide Arts Festival
  • Serves on the District Arts Committee
  • Works with department heads and grade chairpersons to conduct orientation sessions for new fine arts teachers to familiarize them with district guidelines and responsibilities
  • Works collaboratively with Department of Communications to advertise district and school-level special projects and events
  • Performs other duties as may be assigned by the Director of Federal Programs
Education and/or experience: Valid teaching certificate, Masters Degree, five years experience Find the complete list of qualifications and application instructions online.

Redux Contemporary Art Center seeks executive director

Application review begins July 26; position open until filled Redux Contemporary Art Center (Redux), a not-for-profit 501-c-3 arts organization established in 2002, seeks an exceptional, business-savvy leader with an arts or arts administration background for its full-time executive director position. Redux is committed to fostering creativity and the cultivation of contemporary art through diverse exhibitions, subsidized studio space for visual artists, meaningful education programs, and a multidisciplinary approach to the dialogue between artists and their audiences. Redux recently relocated to a newly refurbished building at 1056 King Street in Charleston, which has garnered widespread praise from artists and Redux members and supporters alike. Redux is governed by a nine-member board of directors. Chief Duties The executive director is expected to provide artistic vision, competent leadership and overall direction for day-to-day operations in furtherance of Redux’s mission, consistent with board-established goals and policies. To this end, the executive director has the following chief duties: Business Planning and Program Development

  • Develop and cultivate an artistic vision for Redux and its programming.
  • Implement that vision through programmatic efforts, including but not limited to creating and maintaining a supportive environment for studio artists, planning and managing exhibitions, coordinating arrangements with visiting artists, and developing and overseeing community classes, kids camps, and other learning experiences.
  • Share knowledge and support for the board’s strategic planning process.
  • Develop and execute a sound business plan that aligns Redux’s mission with a strategy to grow revenues and develop long-term sustainability.
  • Assess needs, identify available assets and resources, coordinate and collaborate with others where feasible, and develop and implement programs to achieve the mission.
  • Marshal necessary human, financial, and material resources needed to operate programs.
  • Design evaluation methodologies to assess program performance. Based on evaluation results, implement changes and improvements as necessary.
Fundraising/Resource Development
  • Refine and grow the membership program.
  • Conduct research on grants and other funding opportunities with foundations and other not-for- profit organizations, public sector agencies, corporations, and civic groups.
  • Cultivate relationships with prospective funders. Prepare and submit letters of intent, concept papers, full proposals, and other requests for funding. Complete grant reports.
  • Plan and implement activities to cultivate and solicit individual contributions, particularly from high net worth individuals residing in the Lowcountry.
  • Coordinate special fundraising events.
  • Identify potential sources for in-kind donations of goods and services. Prepare and submit requests as needed.
  • Oversee the acknowledgment of all gifts, grants, and donations in a timely manner and the maintenance of accurate and complete donor mailing lists and files.
Financial Management
  • Oversee and ensure the integrity of day-to-day financial operations and transactions.
  • Develop and revise as needed an annual budget to track revenues, guide spending, and assure performance of mission and strategic goals.
  • Create and update as needed an accounting/financial policies and procedures manual that establishes strong internal controls.
  • Produce financial reports and supporting documentation to the Board of Directors and third parties.
  • Ensure the timely preparation and submission of payroll taxes, annual reports, information returns, and other government filings.
Personnel Management
  • Develop and maintain a personnel policies and procedures manual that complies with all applicable state and federal labor laws.
  • Develop and maintain position descriptions for all staff and key volunteer positions.
  • Hire staff, and ensure proper orientation, training, supervision, and performance evaluation of the team.
  • Create an environment where staff is encouraged and heard – discipline and terminate staff as needed.
  • Assess training needs, identify sources of training, and ensure that staff and volunteers receive adequate training to perform their duties.
Property Management and Asset Protection
  • Develop and implement a prudent business plan for use of Redux’s physical plant, including but not limited to leasing studio space to artists, hosting exhibitions, and renting meeting space to community groups.
  • Ensure that the facility and grounds are properly maintained, clean, safe, and secure.
  • Maintain all necessary insurance coverage and other risk management measures to provide reasonable protection for the agency’s assets, artists, staff and volunteers, equipment, etc.
  • Oversee the organization and safekeeping of agency documents, records, files, art, etc.
Marketing and Communications
  • Assess marketing needs of the agency and develop appropriate activities and vehicles to meet those needs. Develop and promote Redux’s brand to the wider community.
  • Oversee the development of an agency website, newsletter, brochures, fact sheets, annual reports, and other promotional literature.
  • Prepare articles, press releases, public service announcements and advertisements for radio, TV, newspapers, and other media outlets.
  • Conduct speaking engagements to inform the community of Redux’s mission, accomplishments, and ongoing needs for support.
Board and Committee Support
  • Provide support, upon request, for the operations and communications of the board of directors, officers, and board committees.
  • Prepare reports to the board as directed or established in board policies.
  • Inform the board of directors when an important, critical, or controversial internal or external issue or action has occurred or is about to occur.
  • Serve as a resource and advisor to the board in assessing agency needs, understanding industry trends and practices, and developing and updating Board policies pertaining to management and operations.
Qualifications Redux seeks a dynamic individual with an arts or administration background and a strong track in fundraising and/or revenue generation. Education or experience equivalent to a bachelor’s degree is required for this position, though a master’s degree is preferred. A background in art history or techniques will be a plus. In addition to the above qualifications, Redux desires candidates with strong interpersonal skills, experience in managing/supervising staff and volunteers, excellent writing skills, and strong proficiency with technology. We are looking for an energetic, likeable person who is able to manage people and programs in a fast-paced environment, while maintaining a high degree of professionalism with diverse constituencies. Location The position is located in Charleston, South Carolina. Whether an applicant has local ties or not, she or he must possess the skills and abilities to assimilate with the artistic and cultural milieu of Charleston and the wider nonprofit and philanthropic community of the Lowcountry. Redux’s executive director must reside in Charleston or a neighboring community while employed in this position. Instructions for applicants Those interested in applying for this position are instructed to send an email to the Redux Search Committee at reduxedsearch@gmail.com, and attach a current resume and a cover letter that includes applicant’s salary requirements. Review of applicants will begin on July 26, 2017, and the position will remain open until filled. Faxed, mailed, or hand-delivered letters and resumes will not be accepted.

Register today! Statewide Arts Conference registration is $50 through July 21

Special anniversary pricing of $50 is valid through July 21. Fifty years? Where did the time go? Half a century can fly by when you’re busy making your state a thriving place for the arts. The 2017 Statewide Arts Conference will celebrate the S.C. Arts Commission’s 50th anniversary with a focus on the future. Keynote presenters include National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu and Center for the Future of Museums Founding Director Elizabeth Merritt. Sessions will cover topics of interest to artists, arts organizations, arts educators and community partners. The conference kicks off at the S.C. State Museum in Columbia September 14 with an evening plenary and the opening reception for the 50th Anniversary State Art Collection Retrospective and continues September 15 with a full day of sessions and museum experiences. Take advantage of special anniversary pricing!  Registration is only $50 through July 21. After July 21, registration is $75 per person ($65 per person for two or more participants who register at the same time.) Find out more and register today! Thank you to Wells Fargo, our Statewide Arts Conference sponsor.

Congratulations to the new S.C. Arts Commission Artist Fellows!

The South Carolina Arts Commission Board has awarded Individual Artist Fellowships to four South Carolina artists in the categories of visual arts, craft, media: production and media: screenwriting. Each artist receives $5,000. This year's fellows:

Fellowships recognize and reward the artistic achievements of South Carolina's exceptional individual artists. Fellowship awards are made through a highly competitive, anonymous process and are based on artistic excellence only. The fellowship awards bring recognition that may open doors to other resources and employment opportunities. “A fellowship can be a life-changing experience,” said S.C. Arts Commission Executive Director Ken May. “Fellows share stories about how the award dollars made a transformative difference and how this validation affected their spirits and their self-perception. South Carolina’s artists are the core of our creative economy and indispensable contributors to quality of life in our communities. A fellowship is one of the best ways that we can say thank you, and we are proud to deliver these tokens of gratitude on behalf of the people of South Carolina.” The S.C. Arts Commission board approves fellowships based on recommendations made by out-of-state review panelists, who select fellows based solely on a review of anonymous work samples. This year's judges for visual and craft were Irwin Pickett, fine art appraiser and co-owner of Heike Pickett Gallery in Versailles, Kentucky; Geno Rodriguez, New York curator, artist and founder of the Alternative Museum; and Clarissa Sligh, artist, lecturer and essayist of Asheville, N.C. Media judges were Sabine Gruffat (production), digital media artist, award-winning filmmaker and associate professor of art at the University of North Carolina; and Joy Goodwin (screenwriting), writer, filmmaker and teacher -- most recently at Elon University. Individual artists working in prose, poetry, acting and playwriting can apply for the FY2019 fellowship awards. Applications open Aug. 7, 2017, and the deadline to apply is Nov. 1, 2017. For more information about S.C. Arts Commission programs and services, visit www.SouthCarolinaArts.com or call (803) 734-8696.

Florence County Museum launches first 50th Anniversary Fellowship Exhibition

Terry Jarrard-Dimond Terry Jarrard-Dimond The Florence County Museum is the first organization to launch an exhibition of South Carolina Arts Commission Fellows as part of the 50th Anniversary celebration. Evidence, an exhibition of works by veteran South Carolina artist Terry Jarrard-Dimond, is on display June 20 - December 3. Jarrard-Dimond received the S.C. Arts Commission Craft Fellowship Grant in 1987 and is represented by three works in the State Art Collection. The Florence County Museum has a unique relationship to the history of the S.C. Arts Commission. The first president of its board of trustees was E.N. Zeigler, who later became a state senator and the author of the legislation that created the Arts Commission in 1967. The Fellowship Exhibition program was developed to celebrate 50 years of public support for the arts in South Carolina, with emphasis on the achievements of artists who have received the commission’s Visual and Craft Fellowship awards. The exhibition is supported in part by First Citizens. Since 1976, the South Carolina Arts Commission's Fellowship program has recognized the artistic achievements of South Carolina's exceptional individual artists. Fellows are among the most artistically accomplished artists in the state. Find out more about the exhibition. Find out about other 50th Anniversary Fellowship exhibitions.