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Five honorees to receive 2023 S.C. Governor’s Awards for the Arts


COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina Arts Commission is happy to announce it will bestow five recipients in 2023 with the state’s highest award for exceptional achievement in practicing or supporting the arts: the South Carolina Governor’s Awards for the Arts.

The SCAC presents the Governor’s Awards for the Arts annually in the spring. The appointed members of the agency’s board of directors vote on panel recommendations for the award. In 2023, the SCAC board approved the recommendations of the following honorees from their respective categories to be recognized for outstanding achievement and contributions to the arts in South Carolina:
  • SPECIAL AWARD: Nigel Redden; Mystic, Connecticut
  • ARTIST: Ray McManus, Lexington
  • INDIVIDUAL: Carlos Agudelo, Spartanburg
  • ARTS IN EDUCATION: American College of the Building Arts, Charleston
  • ORGANIZATION: Aiken Center for the Arts, Aiken
“Recipients are talented, successful, and dedicated. They always represent the best of South Carolina. They give of themselves to ensure access to the arts for all. By presenting them the Governor’s Award, we celebrate their achievements and thank these accomplished recipients for enriching life and culture throughout our state.” SCAC Board of Directors Chair Dee Crawford said. “Making the arts more representative is central to the South Carolina Arts Commission’s mission,” SCAC Executive Director David Platts. “This class of Governor’s Award recipients is notable not just for its excellence, but also for the ways it improves access to the arts. All five of these have made demonstrable efforts to help make the arts in South Carolina more inclusive and accessible.” A committee appointed by the SCAC Board of Directors reviews all nominations. After a rigorous process and multiple meetings, the panel sends to the board a recommendation from each category with a nomination for its approval. Serving on the panel in 2023 were Shani Blann (Lexington), Flavia B. Harton (Greenville), Tamara Herring (Ridgeland), Ed Madden (Columbia), and Regi Strickland (Columbia). Recipients of the South Carolina Governor’s Awards for the Arts and Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Awards are honored during a broadcast presentation of the South Carolina Arts Awards, which are expected to air on South Carolina ETV this May at a date and time to be announced later. South Carolina First Lady Peggy McMaster will join David Platts and Jane Przybysz, executive director of University of South Carolina McKissick Museum to honor award recipients.

About the 2023 S.C. Governor’s Awards for the Arts Recipients

Nigel Redden (Special Award) retired as the general director of Spoleto Festival USA in 2021 having rejoined the festival in October 1995 after having previously served as its general manager from 1986 to 1991. Redden was director of the Lincoln Center Festival from 1998 to 2017. He has also served as executive director of the Santa Fe Opera (1991-1995), artistic consultant to Philadelphia’s American Music Theater Festival (1992-1994), and consultant to the chairperson of the New York International Festival of the Arts (1991-1992). He was director of the National Endowment for the Arts’ dance program from 1981 to 1986 and has served on numerous panels for the NEA, regional arts organizations, and various foundations. He is president of the Spaulding-Paolozzi Foundation and serves on the board of South Arts. In 2001 he was awarded the Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters and was promoted to Commandeur in 2019. He has received honorary doctorates from the College of Charleston and the University of South Carolina. He is currently the project leader for the Anson African Burial Memorial in Charleston which will honor 36 Africans/African Americans buried in the late 18th century whose bodies were disinterred during the renovation of the Charleston Gaillard Center. Born and raised in Lexington County, Ray McManus (Artist Category) is frequently active in poetry initiatives across the state. He serves as the writer-in-residence at the Columbia Museum of Art. McManus founded Split P Soup, a creative writing outreach program that places writers in schools and communities across South Carolina, and former director of the creative writing program at the Tri-District Arts Consortium that serves Columbia area schools. He coedited a collection of writing responding to historical photographs from South Carolina archives. He is the author of five collections of poetry. His first was selected for the S.C. Poetry Book Prize and published in 2007 and a fifth, Last Saturday in America, will be published by Hub City Press in 2024. His poems and prose have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies of Southern and Irish-American writers. McManus earned his master’s in poetry and his doctorate in rhetoric and composition from the University of South Carolina. Now an English professor at USC Sumter, he teaches creative writing, Irish literature, and Southern literature. He is division chair of both arts and letters and humanities and social sciences and director of the school’s Center for Oral Narrative. Carlos Agudelo (Individual Category) has been Ballet Spartanburg’s artistic director since 1991. Among his choreography are classic and contemporary favorites; some of these have been performed at Piccolo Spoleto Festival, Columbia, Greenville, Greenwood, and Rutherford County, North Carolina. Under Agudelo’s direction in 2012, Ballet Spartanburg formed a resident professional company comprised of a diverse group of dancers from across the world. For 10 years, it has performed from Spartanburg to North Carolina, Texas, and Las Vegas, in the process staging more than 85 presentations of his choreography. The native of Colombia, Agudelo began his training in Florida under the direction of Ruth Petrinovic. He received a scholarship to study at the Harkness Ballet School in New York City and danced with the Israel Classic Ballet in Tel Aviv and the International Ballet de Caracas. Alvin Ailey coached him in Ailey’s ballet, The River. He also danced with Ballet Hispanico of New York. Mr. Agudelo received the 2021 Civitan Servant’s Heart Award for the community of Spartanburg and the 2022 Spartanburg Citizen of the Year awarded by the Spartanburg Kiwanis Club. In 2018, Ballet Spartanburg was awarded the S.C. Governor’s Award for the Arts in the organization category. Real-world implications led Charleston’s School of Building Arts to become the American College of the Building Arts (Arts in Education Category) in 2003. A 1968, a warning came that American artisans in the traditional building arts were aging out of the job market. As school systems cut traditional crafts training, no new generation was being trained to create or repair, restore, and preserve American architectural, historic, and cultural treasures. Then, owners of historic Lowcountry properties had to look to Europe to find artisans who could repair and restore damage after Hurricane Hugo.  A group of Charleston’s preservation leaders created ABCA as a unique higher education experience that fills a gap. ACBA was the first to combine old-world apprenticeship training with a liberal arts core curriculum. ACBA students graduate with the skills to practice their trade and broad liberal arts foundation that allows them to design while leading their fields. They understand not only how to do something, but to think critically within the context of their specialization, manage a business, and communicate effectively with clients. ACBA students have trained through a wide range of community service projects, restoring or creating from the Oval Office back to the Lowcountry. Making art more inclusive and accessible is a high priority for Aiken Center for the Arts (Organization Category). Staff and board of directors use this lens to make the vision a reality for the 40,000 people who come through its doors yearly. Three galleries change exhibitions every six weeks. ACA staff work to incorporate each exhibition into their ongoing educational programs, making a cohesive experience for the community. ACA provides instruction from local artists and musicians, enabling community members to find a creative voice through lessons, camps, workshops, and classes—with scholarships available. ACA works closely with the Aiken County public schools. A program brings Aiken Head Start 4K students into the gallery, and ACA places authors and artists in schools as the arts that are integrated to connect learning and life. Further, ACA serves individuals with cognitive and physical disabilities in its community. Youth summer workshops and year-round adult workshops provide for the development of communication skills, teamwork, and decision making at no cost to participants, and art experiences relating movement and painting reach the Alzheimer’s/dementia community.

About the South Carolina Arts Commission

The mission of the South Carolina Arts Commission is to promote equitable access to the arts and support the cultivation of creativity in South Carolina. We envision a South Carolina where the arts are valued and all people benefit from a variety of creative experiences. A state agency created by the South Carolina General Assembly in 1967, the SCAC works to increase public participation in the arts by providing grants, direct programs, staff assistance and partnerships in artist development, arts industry, arts learning, creative placemaking, and folklife and traditional arts. Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., the SCAC is funded by the state of South Carolina, by the federal government through the National Endowment for the Arts, and other sources. Visit SouthCarolinaArts.com or call 803.734.8696, and follow @scartscomm on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for #Arts4SC and #SCartists content.
South Carolina Arts Commission News Release, Media Contact: Jason L. Rapp, Communications Director. jrapp@arts.sc.gov or 803.734.8899

Jason Rapp

Aiken Center for the Arts to showcase ‘Creative Connectors’

Young creative network resulted from SCAC programs

[caption id="attachment_50384" align="alignright" width="200"] Artwork by creative connector Terrance Washington.[/caption]

Thursday, Aiken Center for the Arts opens a new exhibition featuring artists from the South Carolina Arts Commission's Create: Rural S.C. program.

Create: Rural S.C. is a community arts program that was launched in summer 2018 with a newly formed team of creative professionals discovered through The Art of Community: Rural S.C. program's initial work in six South Carolina counties. To fuel local connection and discovery, the SCAC enlisted the help of 12 “creative connectors” who sought creative contacts across Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Colleton, Hampton, and Jasper counties. Together, they built a network of young creatives making names for themselves in their rural communities instead of leaving for larger, urban locales. From Thursday, June 23 to July 28, 2022, five creative connectors—Ernest Lee, Rajaskeher Y “Mr. Y,” James Wilson, Robert Matheson, and Terrance Washington—will be sharing their work in this exhibition. A reception will open Creative Connectors, Create: Rural S.C. this Thursday from 6-8 p.m. Aiken Center for the Arts is in downtown Aiken (122 Laurens St. SW, Aiken, 29801). Free. To learn more about the work of The Art of Community: Rural S.C. and Create: Rural S.C., use the tags associated with this post.  

Jason Rapp

Local author brings historical exhibition to Aiken middle school

During March 2022 and beyond, Aiken Center for the Arts connects students at Schofield Middle School with local author Dr. Walter Curry through an author in residence program to enrich the study of South Carolina and African American history as it is depicted in his books.

Curry’s work brings Aiken County’s African American history to life through the narratives of his own family. Discussions of the narratives in his books initiate conversation about the past to help students shape the narratives of their future. Combining education, creativity, and passion into student engagements, Dr. Curry shares real life ancestral stories in his books, The Thompson Family: Untold Stories from The Past (1830-1960) and The Awakening: The Seawright-Ellison Family Saga, Vol. 1, A Narrative History, which connect to the 8th grade South Carolina Social Studies Standards. [caption id="attachment_50193" align="alignright" width="450"]Dr. Curry speaks to students from the floor of the school gymnasium as they look on from bleachers. Dr. Curry speaks to students from the floor of the school gymnasium as they look on from bleachers. Provided photo. Click to enlarge.[/caption] Schofield students are reading Curry's second book The Awakening: The Seawright-Ellison Family Saga, Vol. 1, A Narrative History, and discussions focus on the sharecropping experiences of Dr. Curry’s ancestors who lived in Barnwell and Aiken counties. Curry points out that “this book is pertinent to Schofield students as it also incorporates Schofield Normal and Industrial Institute history with the story of Schofield graduate Floster L. Ellison Jr. who was a World War II veteran and co-founded the Palmetto State Barbers Association during the Civil Rights Movement in 1960.” Dr. Curry talks about these narratives that are in the book and engages students by leading them through an exhibition of artifacts and images exploring sharecropping life of his ancestors in the book, showing that history is alive and an important source of connection to our communities. Mrs. Whetstone, who teaches South Carolina history and African American History to 8th graders at Schofield, speaks to the project's relevance. “When you teach history, you teach a lot of dates and sometimes we don’t make the connections. Dr. Curry’s work is the connection. It shows that this happened to Dr. Curry’s family it happened to your family. It happened to all of us. We study the diaspora of African American culture starting from slavery. When you get to reconstruction you understand that we already had those civil rights but had to work through it. Society is not going to be able to move ahead unless we can have these kinds of discussions,” she said. Aiken Center for the Arts believes in the importance of this Author in Residence program because it uniquely delivers our mission by sharing a local voice of untold stories from Aiken County’s African American history, by inspiring area youth through the personal story Curry shares of his journey to authorship alongside the educational enrichment Curry’s books provide as those narratives give real life examples of the concepts taught in the standards. Supporting local artists and authors through the Author in Residence program celebrates rich human resources that are among us while opening opportunities for deeper understanding of the human experience. This project is funded in part by SC Humanities, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The South Carolina Cotton Museum and Jerry Morris, author of the book Barnwell County, are also contributors to this engagement.
For more information contact Caroline Gwinn, executive director of Aiken Center for the Arts: execdir@aikencenterforthearts.org or call the Arts Center at 803.641.9094.

Submitted material

Summer arts camp experiences for children with special needs

Arts Access SC, Aiken Center for the Arts team up

Special needs children in the CSRA will get to experience art and music this summer thanks to a partnership among Arts Access South Carolina, Aiken Performing Arts, and the Aiken Center for the Arts. 
  • June 10-14, 2019
  • 10 a.m. to noon OR 1-3 p.m.
  • Aiken Center for the Arts
[caption id="attachment_37823" align="alignright" width="150"] AASC master teaching artist Carter Boucher, working with a student from S.C. School for the Deaf and the Blind.[/caption] Designed specifically to enable children living with traumatic brain injuries, cerebral palsy, and other physical and developmental disabilities to express themselves creatively, this program is the highlight of our summer outreach. The camp offers adaptable art and music programs designed to enable campers to express their creativity. Whether they are working with clay, trying out screen printing, or experimenting with tonal and atonal musical instruments, their days will be filled with fun. Carter Boucher, an artist in residence and master arts instructor for the Arts Access South Carolina, will teach this years camp. He told WFXG FOX 54 that he urges parents to sign their children up "even if you don’t think they will participate. We have seen children who are nonverbal singing songs and others who usually don’t participate taking the lead on projects. These camps are fun but they also are helpful to these children.” Eligible campers may attend free. Enrollment is limited, so go here to apply today.

Artist believes disabilities shouldn’t hold one back from creating

From the Aiken Standard Article by Stephanie Turner

Throughout his career, artist and art educator Carter Boucher has worked with various ages with various skill levels and abilities. One demographic that he teaches comprises children, teenagers and adults with disabilities. Since his first class with this demographic, he's taught people in wheelchairs, with autism, with Alzheimer's Disease, without limbs and prone to panic attacks, to name just a handful. Boucher started this specific endeavor in the 1980s. Through certain programs, he would visit schools and noticed that students with special needs were often not invited to program's classes. "I started going to the principals and just saying, 'We ought to include those kids,'" Boucher said. "It was sort of a surprise to them that I wanted to do that. ... I feel like populations like that particularly benefit from doing things. A lot of times they get left out." Based in Anderson County, Boucher has taught students throughout South Carolina and will teach a set of classes in Aiken this summer. When he knows about his class's students, Boucher will prepare so he is best able to accommodate each person's needs. Some of his classes have consisted of students with different disabilities, and he said he tries to tune into what each student needs while the class is in session. "The more you know about who's coming and whatever their situation is then the better you can work with," he said. The art teacher has tools such as scissors for people with hand problems. He has contacted schools to see if the student needs any special equipment and if he can then borrow it. If Boucher sees a condition listed on the roster with which he hasn't encountered or has any questions, he will contact a physician for more information or reach out to someone who has worked with the student to see if there is anything which Boucher needs to be aware. One example of how he has adjusted his approach can be seen in a class of autistic children. "Sometimes, I would slow down the process," he said. "For instance, if we were doing silkscreen pencil stencils, I would let them tear or cut or whatever they want to do to make an image, and it would often draw them out. I got a lot of comments from the teachers who worked with autistic kids how much it seemed to draw them out and get them doing things." He's had a student tell him that his class was the first time they felt like they were really part of a class. "What surprises a lot of people who watch me work with the kids is how much they do on their own," Boucher said. "Whatever it is we do with them and however they accomplish it, ... they feel like they own this artwork. It wasn't something we did. It was something they did." Boucher is an Arts Access SC master artist who creates fine art or illustrations with different mediums and methods such as oil, gouache, etching, wood engraving, silk screen and airbrushing. He will be the instructor of the Aiken Center for the Arts' new creative day camp, I Spy Art & Music Camp. The camp is for ages 5 to 13 with cognitive and physical disabilities such as traumatic brain injury and cerebral palsy. It will run from June 12-16 from 10 a.m. to noon or from 1 to 3 p.m. at the arts center, 122 Laurens St. S.W. The camps are free, but enrollment is limited. "(Art) builds confidence. It lowers anxiety and activates parts of the brain that help with almost every subject," Boucher said. He will have some helpers present and is planning for the students to make paper mache masks, work with screenprinting and make music with simple tonal musical instruments that anyone can use. If the young artist has any specific triggers or needs, it is recommended the parent or guardian include that information. Applications are only accepted online. For more information on the camp or Boucher, visit www.aikencenterforthearts.org or www.boucherart.com or call 803-641-9094.

Aiken Center for the Arts seeks special events & facility rentals manager

The Aiken Center for the Arts seeks a dynamic, experienced and creative special events professional to design and implement special events that support the advancement, artistic, and enterprise goals of the institution, deepen visitor loyalty and drive attendance. The ACA's facility rental program, and internally produced events are growing; the successful candidate is a goal-oriented, driven individual with a desire to optimize this growth. At the direction of the executive director, the special events & facility rentals manager will produce and manage all special events, including opening celebrations, donor cultivation events, fundraising events, special performances, community receptions, and other friend-making/brand-building opportunities, as well as manage all external facility rentals from initial engagement to post-rental follow up. The successful manager will be able to meet or exceed budget revenue goals and to ensure that the user experience is positive resulting in repeat rentals. This position requires supervision of all after hour events. Special Events/In-House Events • Conceptualize, plan, implement and manage all special events. Use creativity to execute the vision of events, while meeting attendance goals and remaining within given budget parameters. • Book talent, including musicians, performing arts groups, and speakers. • Coordinate event logistics, including registration and attendee tracking, presentation and materials support and pre- and post-event evaluations. • Collaborate with the volunteer coordinator to secure and oversee volunteer support for special events. • Assist with managing on-site production and clean up for events as necessary. Facility Rentals • Manage the ACA’s facility rental program; respond to inquiries, provide customer service, maintain rental agreements, and track payment. • Research, develop and maintain current and competitive policies, procedures and rates for the use of ACA spaces by individuals and organizations. • Achieve annual revenue targets for facility rental sales. • Develop and maintain positive working relationships with rental clients, and actively seek out new clients through participation in professional associations and tourism-focused organizations and businesses (i.e. meeting, convention and event planners), cold calls, attending trade shows and conventions, etc. • Provide facility tours and negotiate contracts with potential clients. • Serve as ACA representative and point person for all facility rentals, ensuring a positive rental experience, and increasing repeat business, and be available for client as the point of contact throughout the event. Respond to concerns and enforce space usage guidelines and policies. • Facilitate rental customer’s needs and communicate with staff and volunteers to ensure that ACA event and program set-up needs are met (AV equipment, supplies, etc.); support furnishing set-up/tear down and communicate janitorial needs to facilities technician. Administration • Ensure special events calendar is current and accurate. Coordinate with other departments to ensure that there are no schedule conflicts; site is prepared for events/rentals, etc. • Develop and maintain event and volunteer databases. • With cooperation of the executive director, create and distribute marketing materials to ensure revenue goals are met for special events and group rentals. • Develop and manage individual event budgets as well as the special events and facility rentals annual budgets, and monitor actual results against approved budget. • Report monthly goals to the executive director, including event expense projections and forecasts. • Secure all vendors, permits, insurance, contracts, process all invoices and track all expenses related to events. • Keep inventory of projectors, computers, and other display materials. • Research and analysis of past events, using them as a benchmark for recommendations and improvements for future use. • This list of essential duties, tasks and responsibilities is not all-inclusive; individual will perform other related duties as assigned. REQUIRED SKILLS/KNOWLEDGE: • Bachelor’s degree in business administration, communications, hospitality, marketing or similar discipline or related work experience, preferably with a nonprofit organization, may substitute. • Minimum of one year experience in planning special events in a business or nonprofit organization (preferably in museum, hotel or restaurant management). • Demonstrated ability to assume a leadership role and to establish and maintain effective working relationships with clients, colleagues, volunteers, and members of the public; to exercise tact and diplomacy at all times, and to demonstrate an understanding of protocol and sensitivity to cultural diversity issues. • The ability to communicate effectively, both in writing and verbally, with people at all levels of an organization, including board members, donors, students and staff. • Exemplary customer service skills and a strong sales focus. • Excellent negotiation skills. • Demonstrated professional and calm demeanor in high-pressure situations. • Demonstrated problem-solving ability and decision making abilities. Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions. • Excellent demonstrated organizational skills and attention to detail. • Proactive; Proven ability to manage multiple tasks and to prioritize while working independently. • Proficiency with MS Office Suite and ability to learn new database quickly. • Comfortable and competent working with numbers. Ability to calculate figures and amounts and the ability to apply concepts such as fractions, percentages, ratios, and proportions to practical situations. PREFERRED SKILLS/KNOWLEDGE: • Cold call sales experience and customer relationship building experience is highly desirable. • Knowledge and experience in donor management software is a plus. • Knowledge of and experience in non-profit organizations a plus. • Experience in broad range of event planning, including but not limited to museum events, corporate functions, weddings, non-profits, etc or can demonstrate equivalent experience. • Experience in training, supervising and motivating staff and/or volunteers. ENVIRONMENTAL AND WORKING CONDITIONS • Work is in a combination of office and “on the floor” environments. Will involve a combination of time behind a desk and in front of a computer and time in the front of the house with visitors and staff. • Ability to lift objects up to 30 lbs on occasion. • Must be able to set up and tear down equipment, such as tables, chairs, decorations. Physical abilities to reach, twist, bend, lift and climb stairs. • Some travel required. To apply: Submit cover letter and resume by email to Jobs@AikenCenterfortheArts.org, by fax to (803) 641-2009 or by mail to: ACA Personnel Committee Aiken Center for the Arts 122 Laurens St. SW Aiken, SC 29801 Review of applicants will begin on November 1, 2014, and will continue until the position is filled. Aiken Center for the Arts is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, religion, age, handicap or national origin. Via: Aiken Center for the Arts

Aiken Center for the Arts appoints education director and exhibitions coordinator

Aiken Center for the Arts has filled two new positions to assist with its mission to inspire and educate by providing unique visual and performing arts experiences for all ages. Jillian Decker joins the organization as the Aiken Center for the Arts’ first education director. She will be responsible for comprehensive development and management of all education programs at including summer art camps, workshops and annual classes for all ages. “With this new position we were looking for a candidate who had experience and knowledge of both the visual and performing arts as well as the enthusiasm and initiative to grow our education programs so they fully meet the needs of the community," said Executive Director Elizabeth Williamson. "Jillian is just that person, and students will be impressed with her commitment to their opportunity for education in the arts.” Decker earned her Master of Arts in Arts Education from The Ohio State University as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from Pennsylvania State University. Her volunteer and work experience includes Bryce Jordan Center for Performing Arts, The Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus Museum of Art and teaching Creative Writing at The Ohio State University. An avid artist and musician, Decker also works as a freelance graphic designer and runs a small art business in her free time. Mandy Drumming has been promoted to exhibitions coordinator. For the past year, Drumming has worked in the Gallery Store and has been responsible for the layout and installation of exhibitions. In her new role, Drumming will be the point of contact for artists from the beginning of the submission process to the removal of their exhibit. She will be a key person in the exhibition planning, curating and presentation of artworks in the Center’s five galleries. Drumming earned her Masters of Arts in the History of Decorative Arts from the Smithsonian Associates/Corcoran College of Art + Design and her Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of South Carolina Aiken. While in graduate school, she studied exhibition design with Mark Leithauser, chief of design at the National Gallery of Art. In addition, Drumming interned with Brian Lang, former curator of decorative arts at the Columbia Museum of Art. “Mandy has been an asset to the Aiken Center for the Arts and a pleasure to work with,” said Williamson. “At each gallery opening’s artist reception, I am overwhelmed with compliments from guests and artists regarding the layout of the exhibits, all of which can be attributed to Mandy’s keen eye for detail, color and design. I am very pleased to be able to promote Mandy to a position that makes full use of her talents. With Mandy as exhibitions coordinator artists can expect a pleasurable exhibition experience.” About the Aiken Center for the Arts The Aiken Center for the Arts is a 22,000 square foot facility in the heart of downtown Aiken with gallery space, classrooms, a performance space and a gift shop. Classes in the arts are taught by professional teaching artists and available year round for students of all ages. With five galleries featuring the exhibits of local, regional and national artists, rotating monthly, visual arts are a prominent part of the Center’s activities. The Aiken Center for the Arts also works with local and regional performing artists to present concerts and theatre performances in the Brown Pavilion. In addition, the Aiken Youth Orchestra performs two concerts each year.

Wildlife artists invited to submit works to Aiken Center for the Arts

Deadline: June 14 Aiken Wildlife ExhibitionAiken Center for the Arts will be all about the wildlife in October and invites wildlife artists to come along! The North American Blue Bird Society will hold their 36th annual conference in Aiken, S.C., in early October, hosted by the Aiken Center for the Arts.  Approximately six artists will be selected to exhibit their wildlife works at the Center from October 2 to November 8, 2013. Please submit up to five digital images that are representative of your wildlife works for review.  Any medium is acceptable. Key dates • Submit up to five digital images by Friday, June 14. Submit to acaexecdir@bellsouth.net • Selected artists will be notified by July 1. • Exhibit dates: October 2-November 8, 2013 • Reception October 3, 6-8 pm • Deliver artwork Saturday, September 28 between 10 a. m. and noon. • Pickup Saturday, November 9 between 10 a. m. and noon Via: Aiken Center for the Arts

Aiken Center for the Arts seeks executive director

Application deadline: April 5 The organization: The mission of Aiken Center for the Arts is to foster partnerships for the growth of an arts community and to provide arts education, cultural activities, and art opportunities that enrich the quality of life in Aiken. The Aiken Center for the Arts hosts 23,000 visitors annually offering a multitude of outreach and awareness programs including opportunities for children and adults; juried shows and competitions, lectures and instruction, and a variety of concert events; music, dance, film and other performing arts; as well as a gallery store where local artisans offer their original works for sale. Year-round exhibits in our five exhibition galleries feature artists from around the world, with an emphasis on local and regional talent of the South. The Center has a flexible floor plan to maximize its learning programs, and provides 82 free scholarships for children and seniors annually. Its Brown Pavilion is a state-of- the-art visual facility. All of this is accomplished with a staff consisting of two full-time and six part-time employees and many dedicated volunteers. A 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit corporation, the Center follows sound financial practices. The building is debt free, and we follow a pay as you go philosophy which has resulted in a balanced budget for the past nine years. Its $500,000 per-year budget is 98 percent earned through memberships, fund-raisers, facility rentals, classes, grants and art sales commissions. A $400,000 endowment fund helps ensure the long-term financial viability of the Center. The position: The executive director is responsible for the management and oversight of all aspects of the organization, reports directly to the board of directors, and represents the Arts Center in the community and in the state. Job responsibilities:

  1. Increase the Center’s visibility, image and role in the community, and strengthen community support by developing strong relationships with key individuals and organizations.
  2. Active involvement in income-producing activities: finding ways to increase membership income, taking an active role in fundraising activities, and overseeing the grant application process.
  3. Ensure the Center has a balanced operating budget by working with the operations manager and finance committee to maximize revenues and control expenses so the Center breaks even.
  4. All aspects of personnel management, including maintaining job descriptions, hiring, coaching, conducting annual performance reviews and staff scheduling to ensure the Center’s needs are met, and disciplinary action in consultation with the human resources committee of the board.
  5. Lead the strategic planning process with participation from the board of directors.
  6. Ensure a successful gallery exhibition program by leading an exhibit selection team.
  7. Oversight of a robust learning program, working with the programming manager and program committee to determine community needs and provide the resources to meet those needs each year.
  8. Oversight of the gallery store, working closely with the store manager to establish sales goals, a marketing plan and store policies.
  9. Oversee the maintenance of the Center’s 22,000 sq. ft. facility by working with the operations manager, building committee, and contractors to ensure the facility is properly maintained.
  10. Effectively work with the board of directors to ensure that key goals are met.
Visit the website for the full list of qualifications, other requirements, salary offered and application instructions. All applications must be received by 5 p. m. April 5, 2013. Via: Aiken Center for the Arts  

Aiken Center for the Arts presents several artists for October

The Aiken Center for the Arts has multiple artists on exhibition in October, including the first formal showing of The Artisans of the South Carolina Cotton Trail outside of the Pee Dee area of South Carolina. The group includes painters, photographers, jewelers, potters, glass artists, a weaver and a topiary artist. Other artists exhibiting in October: Atlanta native Lila Campbell has had a lifelong fascination with capturing unexpected perspectives of life on film. Campbell’s work has been in various publications as well as in galleries in Atlanta and the Southeast. Campbell recently launched a documentary project called “Day in the Life” which involves spending a day with an individual, family or business and photographically documenting a typical day or unique occasion. Joseph Bradley is a full-time artist in Greenville, S.C. He attended Bob Jones University and studied under Carl Blair and Emory Bopp. Bradley has received numerous awards and has had dozens of exhibitions across the South. His recent work is very process-oriented. “It is meant to depict our emotional connections to certain imagery,” states Bradley, who employs experimentation, layering, multiple washes and intuition to his works. Local artist Bill Updegraff began his painting career more than 30 years ago.  His works are in private and corporate collections and in the permanent collection of the Sheldon Swope Gallery in Terre Haute, Ind. Updegraff has been involved in several exhibitions, both juried and non-juried, throughout the Midwest and South. He has taught watercolor classes and workshops for the past 20 years and currently teaches classes in Greenwood, Anderson and McCormick. Updegraff's exhibition runs through Oct. 31. All other exhibitions run through Nov. 9. Find out more about these exhibitions on the Aiken Center for the Arts' website. Via: Aiken Center for the Arts Photo above: Example of work from The Artisans of the S.C. Cotton Trail Visit Arts Daily to find other events in Aiken and around the state. [caption id="attachment_1464" align="aligncenter" width="307"]Joseph Bradley Blue Chair Joseph Bradley, Blue Chair[/caption]