South Carolina Arts Commission is announcing a pop-up exhibition to take place at the American Craft Council Show Atlanta 2020 at the Cobb Galleria March 13-15. It's organized by South Carolina Arts Commission Visual Arts in partnership with the American Craft Council. This pop up debuts the council’s new initiative to highlight southern states’ craft communities. The South Carolina Arts Commission is the first state arts agency to participate in this initiative.
The South Carolina Arts Commission Pop-Up showcases six artists from the Palmetto State whose work honors the old while embracing the new in unexpected and imaginative ways. For over 50 years, the South Carolina Arts Commission has worked to ensure a climate in which artists are valued and remain at the core of South Carolina’s creative economy. The six makers included in the pop-up are some of the best South Carolina artists working in their respective craft medium. Their work highlights some of the predominant trends taking place in South Carolina: tradition, innovation, social justice, technology, entrepreneurship, and upcycling.
Tradition: Chief Bill Harris of Rock Hill, Catawba pottery (above)
Innovation: Mana Hewitt of Columbia, medals featuring women of historic importance
Technology: Valerie Zimany of Central, porcelain and clay using 3D printing
Entrepreneurship: Quintin Middleton of St. Stephen, Middleton Made Knives
Upcycling: Flavia Lovatelli of Columbia, mixed media trashion wearable art
Social Justice: Jean Grosser of Hartsville, assemblage
Three of the six artists will attend ACC for one day each. Grosser (1993), Hewitt (2006), and Zimany (2020) are South Carolina Arts Commission Fellows.
[gallery columns="4" link="file" ids="44245,44246,44243,44244"]
Jean GrosserSchool Days 1949 (Briggs v. Elliott)
Wood & paper
22” x 22” x 2 ½”
Chief Bill HarrisHeron Bowl
7” x 12” x 6”
Courtesy of McKissick Museum, University of South Carolina
Valerie ZimanyHanazume (Two-Ears)
Ceramic, wheel-thrown and hand built porcelain with press-molded sprigs from three-dimensional model prints and hand-modelled florals
21" x 11" x 11"
Mary Jackson honored by American Craft Council
Mary Jackson is among the foremost of #SCartists, and late last week in Minneapolis the American Craft Council added to her impressive resume by inducting her to its College of Fellows – placing her firmly at the top of her field.
[caption id="attachment_16665" align="alignright" width="230"] Mary Jackson, Two Lips[/caption]
Candidates for this prestigious honor are nominated and elected by their peers. To be eligible, individuals must demonstrate extraordinary ability and must have worked for 25 years or more in the discipline or career in which they are recognized. The Charleston-based basketmaker uses sweetgrass in the West African (and later, Gullah) tradition for her art, which had already garnered her exclusive recognition.
In 2008 she received a $500,000 MacArthur Foundation "genius grant," and in 2011 the S.C. Arts Commission presented her with the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Award for the Arts for Lifetime Achievement. In 2016, the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston named a gallery for her.
Jackson began making baskets under her grandmother’s tutelage at age 4, working alongside other members of her family to uphold a multi-generational tradition that extends back to their ancestral heritage in West Africa.
“The results of a basket are the thing that keeps you coming back again,” she said. “You’ve created something so beautiful, then the whole world loves what you’re doing … that’s the inspiration.”
Read more here and here from American Craft Council, whose work contributed to this post.