Folk traditions alive and featured at S.C. State Fair

Starting today, join the University of South Carolina’s McKissick Museum at the South Carolina State Fair for FOLKFabulous@theFair.

This year, our signature folklife festival celebrates South Carolina’s vibrant pottery traditions, drawing on two McKissick exhibitions: Swag & Tassel: The Innovative Stoneware of Thomas Chandler and Place It/Face It: Pottery by Eugene. Also featured are Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award recipients and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Initiative artists, highlighting the Folklife & Traditional Arts Program of McKissick Museum and the S.C. Arts Commission.

FOLKFabulous@theFair brings together outstanding tradition bearers from around the state, so that we may better know and appreciate our region’s unique cultural heritage.

FOLKFabulous@theFair is not an event to simply observe, but also an invitation 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, an exhibit featuring South Carolina’s pottery heritage, concerts and hands-on music workshops, and our oral history station. New this year, Share Your Fair Story offers visitors an opportunity to record their South Carolina State Fair memories in preparation for the Fair’s 150th Anniversary in 2019. You won’t want to miss the chance to join in a community drum circle, try your hand at making a pot or a story quilt block, or contribute to our yarn-bombing display. You’ll also find music to move your heart and dancing feet: Piedmont Blues by Freddie Vanderford & Millbilly Three, bluegrass by Kristin Scott Benson & Friends, and a cappella spiritual and gospel singing by the Blackville Community Choir.

Keith BrownFeatured ceramic artists and organizations include:

  • Rosa & Winton Eugene
  • Justin Guy of Old Edgefield Pottery
  • Catawba potter Keith Brown (right)
  • Columbia Art Center
  • South Carolina Clay Conference & Newberry Art Center
  • Southern Pottery

Find detailed program listings at: www.scstatefair.org.

Don’t forget to plan a visit to McKissick Museum to view the exhibitions that inspired this year’s festival:

  • Swag & Tassel: The Innovative Stoneware of Thomas Chandler brings new archaeological and archival research to bear on our understanding of a 19th-century Edgefield potter (Aug. 2018-July 2019).
  • Place It/Face It: Pottery by Eugene is the first retrospective exhibition of ceramic art by self-taught, African-American potters Winton and Rosa Eugene of Cowpens. This husband-and-wife artistic team have produced a body of functional wares that speak to southerners’ shared experience of place, and sculptural works that address issues of particular concern to them (Aug. 18-Dec. 15).

McKissick Museum is free and open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.

FOLKFabulous@theFair is made possible with generous support from the South Carolina State Fair, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, and the South Carolina Arts Commission.


FOLKFabulous@theFair 2018 Schedule

  • All activities in the Rosewoods Building, unless otherwise indicated with an *
  • See online or printed schedule for exact times and details. All events & activities are free with Fair admission.

Daily Events

  • McKissick Museum Exhibit: Pottery in South Carolina
    McKissick Museum introduces visitors to South Carolina’s pottery traditions. Learn about the building, glazing, and firing techniques used by historical and contemporary potters, and the minerals used to make clay bodies and glazes. Featured traditions include Southern alkaline pottery, Catawba pottery and more. Also, find out more about folklife and traditional arts.
  • Share Your Fair Story
    As we gear up for the South Carolina State Fair’s 150th Anniversary next year, McKissick Museum would like to gather your stories and memories of Fair traditions and experiences. Stop by and share your favorite memory of your family’s quilts, canned or baked goods, or other State Fair traditions.
  • Hands-on Experiences
    FOLKFabulous@theFair offers daily opportunities for hands-on experiences. No previous experience necessary to participate! Kindle your creativity.

 

Wednesday, October | 12-6 p.m.

Yarn Bombing ~ Yarn Bombers of Columbia
Ever notice the yarn masterpieces adorning trees, parking meters and more on Columbia’s Main Street? The Yarn Bombers of Columbia decorate the Rosewoods Building, host an open stitching circle, and speak about their work.*

*Yarn Bombers of Columbia onstage interview will be held in the Home Arts area, 2:30-3:30 p.m.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience ~ Columbia Art Center
The Columbia Art Center presents pottery displays and offers hands-on experiences in throwing and coiling clay pieces. Potters will have work for sale.

 

Thursday, October 11 | 12-6 p.m.

Speaking with the Clay: A Tribute to David Drake ~ EboniRamm and Columbia Art Center
Create your own story in clay! Poet EboniRamm and Columbia Art Center’s talented potters lead participants in tapping their creativity and experience to combine pottery and poetry.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience ~ Columbia Art Center
The Columbia Art Center presents pottery displays and offers hands-on experiences in throwing and coiling clay pieces. Potters will have work for sale.

 

Friday, October 12 | 12-8:30 p.m.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience ~ Columbia Art Center
The Columbia Art Center presents pottery displays and offers hands-on experiences in throwing and coiling clay pieces. Potters will have work for sale.

Find Your Rhythm: Community Drum Circle ~ Columbia Community Drum Circle
Join in a community drum circle! Drums provided. Since 2004, the Columbia Community Drum Circle has provided a safe, non-intimidating, family friendly space for anyone wanting to explore the joy of group drumming.

 

Saturday, October 13 | 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience: Rosa & Winton Eugene
Rosa and Winton Eugene of Cowpens, SC demonstrate and talk about their work, highlighting techniques and forms that explore scenes of the rural south and the Eugenes’ experience as African Americans and concerned citizens of the world. They will offer a display, with pieces for sale, and a hands-on pottery activity.

 

Sunday, October 14 | 1-6 p.m.

Hands-On Experience ~ Southern Pottery | 1-4 p.m.
Participate in a clay experience: build your own mask or a face jug.

South Carolina Treasures: Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Initiative

  • Bluegrass Concert ~ Kristin Scott Benson & Friends | 3-4 p.m., WLTX Stage
    Join Kristin Scott Benson and an all-star cast of today’s top bluegrass artists, including Shawn Lane, Marcus Smith, and Alan Bibey, for an impromptu set of top-notch music, also featuring Samantha Morgan, a recent apprentice in the SC Arts Commission’s Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Initiative.
  • Bluegrass Banjo Workshop ~ Kristin Scott Benson & Samantha Morgan | 4:30-5:30 p.m.
    Come explore the roots and contemporary styles of bluegrass banjo, with Master Artist, Kristin Scott Benson, and Apprentice, Samantha Morgan. This will be an intimate, highly interactive workshop, with a Q and A session.

 

Monday, October 15 | 12-6 p.m.

South Carolina Treasures: Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Initiative
Catawba Pottery ~ Keith Little Bear Brown & Teresa Harris
Master Catawba potter Keith Brown and apprentice Teresa Harris display and demonstrate their work, talk about their apprenticeship, and offer hands-on instruction in the pinch pot technique.

 

Tuesday, October 16 | 12-6 p.m.

South Carolina Treasures: Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award
Gullah Sweetgrass Basketry ~ Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Association
Learn about Gullah Geechee history and the sweetgrass basket tradition. Enjoy a display and demos featuring multiple basket weavers, and take part in a hands-on activity.

 

Wednesday, October 17 | 12-6 p.m.

South Carolina Treasures: Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award

  • A Cappella Spiritual & Gospel Singing ~ Blackville Community Choir | 12-2 p.m.
    The Blackville Community Choir has been gracing church services, weddings and other community gatherings since 1965. Come hear them in concert and join in a community singing session.
  • Indian Clay Traditions ~ Folk Artist Jugnu Verma | 2:30-5:30 p.m.
    Explore the origin and evolution of Indian tribal and folk art forms and their influence on modern Indian art and life, with Indian folk artist Jugnu Verma. Try your hand at Lippan, a form of clay art traditionally used to adorn homes in the hot, arid region of Kutch, India. Or, decorate a Diya, the clay vessel used to hold candles during Divali, India’s annual festival of lights.

 

Thursday, October 18 | 12-6 p.m.

  • Immortal images: Decorating Techniques of Old Edgefield Pottery
    Justin Guy creates and talks about Edgefield Pottery and its design elements. He will teach how to create elemental designs using pen and ink, drawing inspiration from what is around us in our daily lives and environment.
  • Yarn Bombing ~ Yarn Bombers of Columbia
    The Yarn Bombers of Columbia return to the State Fair to host an open stitching circle and speak about their work. Stitch your own creation and add it to the display! Yarn Bombers onstage interview will be held in the Home Arts area, 3:30-4:30

 

Friday, October 19 | 12-6 p.m.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience ~ Newberry Arts Center & South Carolina Clay Conference
The Newberry Arts Center & South Carolina Clay Conference present pottery displays and offer hands-on experiences in creating clay pieces. Potters will have work for sale.

 

 Saturday, October 20 | 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

Pottery Display and Hands-On Experience ~ Newberry Arts Center & South Carolina Clay Conference | 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
The Newberry Arts Center & South Carolina Clay Conference present pottery displays and offer hands-on experiences in creating clay pieces. Potters will have work for sale.

South Carolina Treasures: Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Initiative

  • Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award | 3-3:30 p.m., 5:30-6 p.m.
    Piedmont Blues Concert ~ Freddie Vanderford & Millbilly Three
    Come hear South Carolina Piedmont blues legends Freddie Vanderford and the Millbilly Three, carrying on a Palmetto State tradition from the Upstate. (Millbilly Three concerts on the WLTX Stage.)
  • Piedmont Blues Harmonica Workshop | 4-5 p.m.
    Join Master Piedmont Blues harmonica player Freddie Vanderford and Apprentices Mattie Phifer Suber and David “Shag” Stepp for a hands-on Piedmont Blues harmonica workshop. Harmonicas provided.

 

Sunday, October 211-5 p.m.

South Carolina Treasures: Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award
Hands-on Family & Memory Quilt Workshop ~ Peggie Hartwell
Create your own fabric story block, exploring the use of color and design to find your “voice on cloth.” Materials provided. See a pop-up display of quilts by Peggie Hartwell, who depicts her family stories, African American culture and history, and current world issues in her detailed and colorful work.


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