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13th Annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition Winners Announced

Sculpture artists from across the nation applied to the 13th Annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition and Exhibition, displayed at the North Charleston Riverfront Park and presented as a component of the 2018 North Charleston Arts Fest. Organized annually by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, this unique, eleven-month exhibition offers established and emerging artists the opportunity to display their thought provoking, extraordinary sculptures, as well as compete for up to $19,750 in honorariums and awards. Thirteen out of 94 submissions were pre-juried into the exhibition by the juror, Lilly Wei, New York-based independent curator, writer, journalist, lecturer, and critic. Once installed at the exhibition site, Wei then made her selections for Best in Show, Outstanding Merit, and Honorable Mentions. The sculptures selected for exhibition are by 13 artists from 10 states. Congratulations to the winners of the 2018/2019 National Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition:

  • Best in Show: Vuida by Joni Youkins-Herzog (Athens, Ga.; shown at right)
  • Outstanding Merit: Yellowfish by John Ross (Long Branch, N.J.)
  • Honorable Mention: Hallelujah by Charlie Brouwer (Willis, Va.)
  • Honorable Mention: Battery No. 1 by Lena Daly (Los Angeles, Calif.)
  • Honorable Mention: Moonlight Sonata by Hanna Jubran (Grimesland, N.C.)
Also displayed were the following pre-juried works:
  • The Sound of Everything - Bassoon by Sean Cassidy (Rock Hill)
  • Wind by Bob Doster (Lancaster)
  • Electric Horse by Normon Greene (Brentwood, Md.)
  • Ollie's Buoy by Roger Halligan (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
  • Gothic Family by Beau Lyday (Valdese, N.C.)
  • Oculi Aqua by Carmen Rojas (Ocala, Fla.)
  • The Wealth of Fools by Gregory Smith (North Pownal, Vt.)
  • Core Oracle by Adam Walls (Hope Mills, N.C.)
Sculpture sites are located throughout North Charleston Riverfront Park (1001 Everglades Ave.) on the former Charleston Naval Base. The park is open daily during daylight hours. Admission and parking are free. The 2018/2019 National Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition will be on display through March 24, 2019. For more information or to be added to the application mailing list for the 2019/2020 competition, please call the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at 843.740.5854 or email culturalarts@northcharleston.org. For more information on the sculpture exhibition, visit NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com.
After determining the award winners, Lilly Wei offered the following juror’s statement: "I would like to begin by congratulating all the artists in this wonderful exhibition and wishing you much success. It is never easy to choose and even more difficult to select just one “best in show,” and one “outstanding merit” but it is good that a few others can be singled out also. I would further state the obvious, that these endeavors are inevitably subjective, influenced by the juror’s own inclinations and criteria, conscious and unconscious. I would add that these are my readings of the works, not necessarily those of the artists although that is what art should do—evoke myriad responses from its viewers. That said, Joni Younkins-Herzog’s Vuida earned Best inShow. I very much liked its playfulness and a subversive feminism that quickly shifted into the feminist, as the flower became a trumpet of sorts, a loudspeaker, perhaps, that says that flowers, (and women) should speak out, boldly broadcasting messages that need to be heard. She upends a traditional still life vanitas motif about ephemerality into something more political, activist, and of the moment."

Tuning Up: More Cane Bay arts excellence + free poetry series and museums

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


  • What's in the water in Cane Bay? We recently shared a story about Cane Bay Elementary, and we return to talk about their high school. The Congressional Art Institute holds a national competition each year, and thousands of applicants take part for a chance to have their artwork displayed for one year at the U.S. Capitol. Cane Bay high school senior Jorge De La Cruz was named this year's winner for the South Carolina district. He will be awarded with other national district winners in an award ceremony in Washington. Read (and watch) more from ABC News 4 here.
  • African-American poet series at McLeod Plantation: Poet Marilyn Nelson visits McLeod Plantation Historic Site in Charleston on Sunday, June 3 for a reading and reception (325 Country Club Dr., James Island). Free to the first 50 guests; additional guests will have to pay the historic site's admission fee to enter the property.
  • Free museum admission for active-duty military families: Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the U.S. Department of Defense, and museums across America. Each summer since 2010, Blue Star Museums have offered free admission to the nation’s active-duty military personnel and their families, including National Guard and Reserve, from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Go here to find participating museums nationwide! The list of museums participating in 2018 will be updated all summer long. Reading this from a museum? Museums interested in participating should email bluestarmuseums@arts.gov.

Submitted material

2018 S.C. Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition Winners

Fine craft artists and artisans from across South Carolina were invited to participate in the state’s only juried fine craft competition and exhibition: the 17th Annual South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition. Presented May 2-6 as a component of the 2018 North Charleston Arts Fest, the show is organized annually by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department. After an extensive pre-jury process, 42 applicants were asked to participate and 81 entries were submitted in the categories of clay, fiber, metal, glass, wood, and 3D mixed media. Cash awards totaling $6,500 were made at the sole discretion of the juror, Rachel Reese, associate curator of modern and contemporary art at Telfair Museums in Savannah, Ga. “The quality of artwork submitted is a testament to the ongoing value that visual artists contribute to material culture, and this presentation of artworks exemplifies the vibrancy, imagination, energy, and great talent of South Carolina artists working today,” Reese said. Reese also selected pieces from the show to assemble a South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Traveling Exhibition, which will tour the state through the South Carolina State Museum’s 2018/2019 Traveling Exhibitions Program. Galleries, museums, and art centers across the state can request the exhibit to visit their facilities on its tour. Four pieces were selected for City of North Charleston Purchase Awards. These selections will be added to the City of North Charleston’s Permanent Public Art Collection, which is on display within North Charleston City Hall throughout most of the year. Congratulations to the winners of the 2018 South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition: "A Lively Live Oak"

Best of Show

“A Lively Live Oak” (fiber) by Peg Weschke (Hilton Head Island)

Outstanding Merit

  • “Sashay” (clay) by Gary Huntoon (Travelers Rest)
  • “Mosaic Cherry Bowl” (wood) by Dale Fort (Charleston)

City of North Charleston Purchase Awards

  • “Rising Waters” (encaustic) by Marty Biernbaum
  • “Spot On: Chartreuse Raku #1” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton)
  • “Summertime Tea Time” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville)
  • “A Small Disturbance in the House of Pluto” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant)

Honorable Mention

  • “Summertime Delight” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville)
  • “Charleston Box #66” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant)
  • “Refraction” (fiber) by Connie Lippert (Seneca)
  • “Segmented Bowl” (wood) by Kenny Teague (Charleston)
  • “A Little Birdie Told Me…” (mixed media) by Bob Thames (North Charleston)
  • “A Farewell to Arms” (wood) by Robb Helm Kant (North Charleston)
  • “Featherweight” (stoneware) by Justin Guy (Trenton)
  • “Swirls III” (fiber) by Beth Andrews (Greer)
  • “Three Stone Necklace” (mixed media) by Rachel Weiss (Charleston)
  • “Melting Point” (porcelain) by Annie Rhodes Lee (Folly Beach)
  • “Lean on Me” (clay) by Sherrie Nesbitt (Summerville)
  • “Spot On: Chartreuse Raku #1” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton)

South Carolina Palmetto Hands Traveling Exhibition Selections

  • “Summertime Delight” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville)
  • “A Lively Live Oak” (fiber) by Peg Weschke (Hilton Head Island)
  • “Go Ask Alice” (embroidery on canvas) by Liz Holt (Conway)
  • “Green Vessel” (felted fiber vessel) by Pam Shanley- (Summerville)
  • “Ivy Relief” (wood) by Ben Pendarvis- (St. Helena Island)
  • “Old School” (mixed media) by Patz Fowle- (Hartsville)
  • “Charleston Box #66” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant)
  • “Segmented Bowl” (wood) by Kenny Teague (Charleston)
  • "Solution” (metal and wood) by Robb Helmkamp – (North Charleston)
  • “Dr. Seuss Teapot” (clay) by Mark Vail – (Charleston)
  • “Petting Zoo” (fiber) by Evelyn Beck- (Anderson)
  • “Shawl Spring Sunrise” (textiles) by Iryna Toney- (Summerville)
  • “Mosaic Cherry Bowl” (wood) by Dale Fort (Charleston)
  • “Three Stone Necklace” (mixed media) by Rachel Weiss (Charleston)
  • “Lean on Me” (clay) by Sherrie Nesbitt (Summerville)
  • “Spot On: Lapio Raku #2 and Denim #3” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton)
  • “Sashay” (clay) by Gary Huntoon (Travelers Rest)
North Charleston Arts Fest also featured a judged fine art and photography competition. You can find out the winners of that here.

SCGSAH creative writing student gets prestigious honor

Aidan Forster was already having an amazing-beyond-belief senior year. Aidan Forster A National Merit Finalist, he received college acceptances from Yale, Stanford, Columbia, Penn, and Cal-Berkeley, among others. (He chose Brown University, and will enroll in the fall.) But then the U.S. Department of Education came calling and gave the creative writing senior from Taylors studying at the S.C. Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities (SCGSAH) further plaudits to his credit by naming him a U.S Presidential Scholar in the Arts, one of only 20 in the nation. Aidan was nominated by the National YoungArts Foundation and will represent our state as the only arts scholar selected from South Carolina. "Aidan is a rare combination of talent and fearlessness and intellect. With his writing, he is unafraid to push himself into unexplored areas, places that aren’t necessarily in his comfort zone. I’m not sure we’ve ever had a writer who worked as hard to get the most out of his talents ... I can’t wait to see what he accomplishes in the years ahead," Creative Writing Department Chair Scott Gould said. Aidan will be the 8th U.S. Presidential Scholars in the Arts from the Governor's School's Creative Writing Department. In addition, he:

  • was the inaugural recipient of the 2018 YoungArts Lin Arison Excellence in Writing Award, which provides a $50,000 scholarship,
  • is a 2018 YoungArts Finalist, one of 19 selected nationally for Creative Writing, and attended YoungArts Week in Miami in January,
  • received two Gold Medals, one silver medal, and a Silver Medal with Distinction for his writing portfolio in the 2018 National Scholastic Art & Writing Awards competition,
  • was included in the 2017 Best New Poets annual anthology of 50 poems from emerging writerspublished by the University of Virginia,
  • and his poetry chapbook, Exit Pastoral, was selected to be published by YesYes Books as a winner in the Vinyl 45's Chapbook Contest. He is the youngest author to be chosen.

S.C. Arts Awards: Ballet Spartanburg

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Verner Awards recipients are featured.
Dancer Charlotte Lanning

Ballet Spartanburg

Organization Category Ballet Spartanburg’s mission is to promote dance and dance appreciation in Spartanburg County and surrounding areas by providing the highest quality dance training, education, performance and outreach. In 1966, a group of 85 ballet enthusiasts and visionaries under the leadership of the late Majorie Riggs, met at Converse College and decided that Spartanburg needed to have the opportunity to enjoy live classical ballet. They began working as a group to create a charter named The Ballet Guild of Spartanburg. Memberships were $5 for an Active Member, $15 for a Patron, and $25 for a Sponsor membership. Today, Ballet Spartanburg is recognized as a regional dance company with an exceptional commitment to education and outreach activities in the Upstate. Ballet Spartanburg has performed at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, the Koger Center in Columbia, at the Peace Center in Greenville, TEDxTryon and in Houston and Forest City. For the past five years, Ballet Spartanburg has retained the only resident professional company in the Upstate, one of only four in the state of South Carolina. The Company has performed in Houston, Texas, and North and South Carolina. The Center for Dance Education began in 1967 under the direction of the late Barbara Ferguson. The Center now instructs 350 students from over 30 ZIP codes, all under the direction on Ballet Mistress Lona Gomez. With an ever-growing outreach program, Ballet Spartanburg offers lecture/ demonstrations in partnership with Spartanburg school districts with after school programs, in-school performances, artists in residence, and free performances of Peter & the Wolf. Ballet Spartanburg also partners with the City of Spartanburg to offer summer programs for at-risk youth and the Boys and Girls Club of the Upstate and offers performances at nursing homes, hospitals, and community events. Celebrating 51 years embedded in the Spartanburg community, Ballet Spartanburg’s programming continues to evolve with the dance needs of the community and its students, adding new variations of dance classes with opportunities to extend dance knowledge, technique and new performances to new audiences. For more, visit BalletSpartanburg.org.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.

S.C. Arts Awards: Bank of America

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Verner Awards recipients are featured.

Bank of America

Business Category Bank of America has a rich history of commitment to the arts, which translates into global programs as well as local support for what is most relevant in each community it serves. The bank is one of the leading supporters of the arts globally because they believe that a thriving arts and culture sector benefits economies and societies. The bank supports nonprofit arts institutions that deliver both visual and performing arts, provide inspirational and educational sustenance, anchor communities, create jobs, complement school curricula and generate substantial revenue for local businesses. This sustained commitment not only has helped these institutions flourish, but helps the bank make an important connection to the communities it serves. Just in the last few years in South Carolina, Bank of America has given more than $2 million in support for the arts. Support has been wide in scope across many geographies and arts organizations in the state. A few of the organizations that have received their support over the years include Spoleto USA, Columbia Museum of Art, Gibbes Museum of Art, Chapman Cultural Center, Arts Partnership of Spartanburg, Peace Center, Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, S.C. Philharmonic, and Broadway in Columbia. In addition to local grants and sponsorships that the bank has given to support South Carolina arts institutions, Bank of America encourages its 1,500 South Carolina employees to volunteer locally either through Bank of America Community Volunteers organized outreach events or through whatever organization is most important to them. Every employee is offered two hours per week for community volunteerism. In the last five years, South Carolina employees have invested 81,000 volunteer hours. Another important way that Bank of America employees give of their leadership in the community is through board service. Three Bank of America executives in South Carolina serve on the boards of Gibbes Museum of Art and Spoleto USA in Charleston and Columbia Film Society/Nickelodeon Theatre in Columbia. A fourth will join the board of the S.C. Philharmonic in 2018. To learn more about Bank of America’s corporate commitment to the arts, visit BankOfAmerica.com/Arts.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.

S.C. Arts Awards: Dr. Anne S. Richardson

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Verner Awards recipients are featured.

Dr. Anne S. Richardson

Arts in Education Category Dr. Anne S. Richardson attended Point Park College (now University) in Pittsburgh for a bachelor’s in dance performance and graduated in 1978. She danced professionally with the Pittsburgh Opera Ballet and South Carolina Ballet Theatre and apprenticed with Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. Dance companies at the time weren’t geared to shorter dancers, and it was difficult to get auditions at only five feet tall. She studied jazz dance as well as ballet in college and began to consider teaching, starting off with jazz at Calvert-Brodie School of Dance when she returned to Columbia. “I was fortunate to have wonderful teachers in Pittsburgh, New York, Chicago, and Columbia and will be forever grateful. Because of what so many of my gifted teachers did for me, it is my dearest wish that I inspire at least one student and support that student’s belief in him or herself,” Richardson said. She started a jazz company, Dansework-Jazz, in 1987 and continued to perform until 1995. At the same time, she began teaching ballet at Hand, and later Crayton, middle schools, and then finally Dreher High School. The demands of being a teacher and performer were tough, and when she added graduate school to her schedule in 1992, she realized she had to stop performing to focus on teaching and pursuit of a master’s in theatre at USC, which she earned in 1997. A master’s in educational administration from USC was added in 2001, and she earned a doctorate in educational leadership from Nova Southeastern University in 2008. In 2001, Richardson began the dance program with Palmetto Center for the Arts, housed at Richland Northeast High School. Creating a fine arts magnet dance program and working with the faculty and students was gratifying, and it was there that she honed her skills in developing arts-integrated lessons and performances. She found that her varied educational background fit into the arts integration teaching model. When Richardson arrived at Westwood High School five and a half years ago, she worked with the arts faculty and administration to provide students with extraordinary experiences integrating the arts with their subject classes. Richardson successfully wrote the Distinguished Arts Program grant for Westwood beginning in 2014, and in 2015, Westwood became an Arts In Basic Curriculum (ABC) Site. Also in 2015, under Richardson’s leadership, Westwood became the only arts-integrated high school in Richland 2. Affecting the lives of regular students has confirmed to Richardson the importance of the arts to all students—not just those who are gifted and talented. She began the Renaissance Faire at Westwood inspired by the castle-like architecture of the school. Working with other teachers, she created this yearly event that involves students in performances, projects, and presentations about the Renaissance that are presented to the school, Richland 2 students, and the community. In addition, her students write an original production each summer to present in the fall. They research the topic and write a play to tell stories and create characters that they themselves portray. Her students have created the following original performances: Mostly Coastal Ghosts, The Cherokee Project, Gullah Gumbo, Strange Warfare: The Christmas Truce of World War 1, The Secret Room: Tales of the Underground Railroad, and 9/11: The Story of US. In all of these performances, students created characters based on real events and came as close to living the characters’ lives as is possible. The insight into these situations will stay with these students for a lifetime. Providing these experiences is important to Richardson as a teacher. “It is not about my success but rather that of my students,” she said. Richardson believes that her greatest contribution to education is helping students to believe in themselves by first believing in the students. “I know what it is to have doubt as a young dancer and recognize the wonderful transformation that takes place when a teacher takes the time to encourage and inspire a student. My aspiration is to foster original thinking in my students through arts integration, challenging them to create unique performances so that they have to dig deep within to tell stories and affect their audience. They learn to work with others, bringing disparate ideas and untold stories together to make a new whole and inspire the world around them,” she said.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.

S.C. Arts Awards: Alan Ethridge

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Verner Awards recipients are featured.
Image courtesy of TownCarolina.com

Alan Ethridge

Individual Category Before becoming Metropolitan Arts Council’s executive director in January 2006, Greenville native Alan Ethridge had served as director of marketing and development since January 2004. He did not replace himself upon taking the higher position and has performed the duties of both roles since. Under Ethridge’s leadership, MAC has exceeded the past year’s fundraising goal each year, and in 2016 its endowment surpassed $1 million. His cumulative fundraising total is $15 million, all of which is sent back into the community, fairly and responsibly, to more than 1,300 artists and almost 60 arts organizations. Further credited to Ethridge is his diligence in creating cohesion among the regional arts stakeholders, whereas in the past the atmosphere has been more territorial and competitive. Early in his MAC tenure, he brought larger organizations together through the “Cultural Coalition,” offering an avenue for collaboration that was previously non-existent. Put simply, Ethridge channels his efforts into facilitating the success of others – and his community at large. MAC partners with the city of Greenville to present Thursday night concerts in spring and summer months that attract more than 50,000 in annual attendance. When he began as executive director, 80 artists were participating in Greenville Open Studios – there are now more than 130. Nearly half a million people have visited Greenville artists and purchased more than $2.8 million in local art. After federal funding ended for the SmartArts program in Greenville schools, Ethridge's nearly single-handed efforts not only sustained the program, but enabled it to expand from just two schools to more than 60 and opened the possibility of grant funding to every public-school teacher in Greenville County. In addition to his MAC duties, Ethridge serves on the boards of the Greenville Convention & Visitors Bureau, Artisphere, the Greenville Chamber of Commerce and the Greenville Tech Department of Visual Arts. In 2010, Alan received the Excellence in Arts Leadership Award from the Chamber of Commerce and the Peace Center for the Performing Arts. Ethridge was previously director of donor research in the Office for Development at Clemson University, and prior to returning to Greenville in 1989, worked for Ogilvy & Mather Advertising in Atlanta and Henderson Advertising in Greenville. He is a 1982 summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa alumnus of Vanderbilt University, where he received a bachelor’s in English literature and fine arts.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.

S.C. Arts Awards: Tom Stanley

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Verner Awards recipients are featured.
Photo by Terry Roueche

Tom Stanley

Artist Category Visual artist Tom Stanley, former chair of the Winthrop University Department of Fine Arts, earned a master’s in applied art history and another in painting from the University of South Carolina in 1980. There he learned what it meant to support, trust, and encourage students. After time on college faculties in Arkansas and Florida throughout the 1980s, in 1990 he returned to South Carolina to become the first director of Winthrop University Galleries and became chair of the school’s fine arts department in 2007. During his tenure as chair and gallery director, he worked to increase student and department visibility. He fostered gallery programming partnerships in both Carolinas including the exhibition Still Worth Keeping: Communities, Preservation and Self-Taught Artists with the South Carolina State Museum highlighting the importance of these artists to community identity. Stanley and former Winthrop colleague Shaun Cassidy, a sculptor, worked closely with Winthrop, the Wells Fargo Championship, the City of Rock Hill, and Family Trust Federal Credit Union to create ongoing opportunities for students to be commissioned in the production of public art in the region. Stanley also developed an initiative called ACE (Artists and Civic Engagement). It hosted regional artists including Leo Twiggs and Minuette Floyd and brought artist Patrick Dougherty to Rock Hill to create a temporary sapling sculpture titled Ain’t Misbehavin’ on Main Street with the assistance of fine arts students. In recent years Stanley’s creative work has been exhibited in Charleston, Greenville, and Columbia in South Carolina; Charlotte, Raleigh, and Winston-Salem in North Carolina; in New Orleans; and internationally in Berlin, Lausanne, Paris, and Portugal. His most recent exhibition was Tom Stanley: Scratching the Surface at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art during Spoleto in Charleston. Last year, Stanley completed the public art commission for CATS’ Tom Hunter light rail station in Charlotte, which includes 15 windscreen panels, two benches, seven column claddings, and 32 steel fence inserts. Stanley and Cassidy teamed for public art commissions in Simpsonville, Raleigh, and in Omaha, Neb. In 2010, they completed the 33-ft. high stainless-steel Winthrop Monolith and in 2015 produced the commission Moments on Main Street in Columbia. For more, visit TomStanleyArt.com.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.

S.C. Arts Awards: Dr. Stephen Criswell

2018 Recipient Feature Series

As the day nears for the 2018 South Carolina Arts Awards, The Hub is taking 10 days to focus on this year's 10 recipients: five receiving the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts and five receiving the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, which are managed jointly by the South Carolina Arts Commission and McKissick Museum at USC. This week, the Folk Heritage Award recipients are featured.

Dr. Stephen Criswell

Traditional Arts & Folklife | Advocacy Award Dr. Stephen Criswell has worked in the field of folklore for over twenty years. A 1997 graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, he has concentrated on the study and preservation of South Carolina traditions, customs, and cultural practices. His research and fieldwork (much of it conducted with his late wife, Samantha McCluney Criswell) have included African American family reunion traditions, Southern foodways, especially Carolina Fish Camps, and literary uses of folk culture. His most prominent contribution is his work as an advocate for Native American culture, with a special focus on Catawba potters and contemporary expressive traditions. In 2005, the University of South Carolina Lancaster hired Criswell and challenged him to build and direct USCL’s Native American Studies program. Thirteen years later, the Native American Studies Center (NASC) houses the largest fully intact collection of Catawba pottery in existence, an extensive archival collection, and a staff dedicated to celebrating and promoting Native American culture. Through the efforts of Dr. Criswell and his colleagues, USCL now offers students a concentration in Native American Studies. Criswell has worked closely with South Carolina tribal leaders and members, the Catawba Cultural Preservation Project, and a variety of arts and cultural agencies, to bring greater attention to the history and culture of South Carolina Native communities. Under his leadership, the NASC has mounted thirty-two exhibitions, covering a range of subjects. Since opening in 2012 in the heart of downtown Lancaster, the NASC has seen 30,000 visitors from all over the world, a clear demonstration of raising awareness of the history, culture and traditions of Native people of the South. Criswell has conducted oral history interviews with a host of Catawba potters, including Eric Cantey, Evelyn George, Elsie George, Bertha Harris, Beulah Harris, Cora Harris Hedgepath, and Elizabeth Plyler. His work with these artists provides a public forum that gives voice to Native American community members of whom many might otherwise be unaware. In 2013, the NASC launched the Native American Artist-in-Residence Program, which provides Native artists a venue to present their culture and heritage to a wide audience of students, teachers, community members, and tourists. Criswell’s philosophy is grounded in knowing who we are, who we all are, embracing our different cultures, and learning from each other through the richness of our shared heritage. With this zeal he has written grants to secure funding to create and sustain programs that bring the Native American experience into the conversation of contemporary South Carolina culture. To date, he has secured more than $360,000 in funding from such notable sources as the National Endowment for the Arts, the South Carolina Arts Commission and the Duke Endowment. This funding has created a platform that brings people together to learn, share, and connect through an important, though underappreciated, aspect of South Carolina culture. Traditional artist and educator Beckee Garris of the Catawba Nation states, “Dr. Stephen Criswell has made part of his life’s mission to help people understand the vast cultural histories of the natives in South Carolina. He preserves these histories by collecting our stories and respecting us in the process. I am very fortunate to say he is my mentor and also my friend.” A dedicated scholar, advocate, and mentor, Criswell is a tireless supporter of the traditional arts in South Carolina.
South Carolina Arts Awards Day is Wednesday, May 2, 2018. Gov. Henry McMaster will present each recipient's award beginning at 10:30 a.m. in the State House. The event is open to the public. Following the ceremony, the South Carolina Arts Foundation honors the recipients and the arts community at the S.C. Arts Awards Luncheon and Art Sale. Tickets are $50. Please go here for more information and reservations.