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Artisphere marks return to normalcy

Festival runs Friday through Sunday

Artisphere presented by TD Bank announced some of its new and exciting programs for Greenville’s premier arts and cultural celebration, May 6-8, and reminded loyal patrons that many festival favorites will return in 2022.

This year’s festival will span Main Street from Court and Main to Wardlaw and Main, is free to the public, and will feature 135 visual artists working in 17 different mediums on GE Artist Row. “Every year, Artisphere brings a wonderful variety of art, artists and entertainment to downtown Greenville,” said Chris Fincher, regional vice rresident for TD Bank. “TD Bank is happy to play a part in helping Artisphere continue its great success, and we look forward to another exciting festival this year along our beautiful Main Street.” Artisphere is an operating support grantee of the South Carolina Arts Commission.

What’s New

Truist Arts and Drafts

At the intersection of E. Broad and Main streets, this exciting new exhibit features 14 different craft beers from Brewery 85, Hi Wire, Columbia Craft, Wicked Weed, Bold Rock, New Belgium, Steel Hands, Catawba Brewing, and Palmetto Brewing Company. Beer enthusiasts can choose from an assortment of styles while taking in live art making as three uber talented, regional artists transform multiple 4’x7’ blank canvases to works of art.  Multi-disciplinary  artist Ninja Picasso of Greenville will be painting Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Muralist Gus Cutty of Asheville will paint Friday and Saturday, and digital artist and muralist Cloud Cruiser of Atlanta will paint Saturday and Sunday.

Fine Arts Center Student/Teacher Exhibition

The Fine Arts Center in Greenville prepares dedicated students for 21st-century careers through rigorous, pre-professional arts training in a dynamic, inclusive, collaborative learning community. The Fine Arts Center Student/Teacher Exhibition, sponsored by Bon Secours St. Francis Health System, showcases a piece from each of the six teachers in the visual arts department, as well three to five additional student pieces from FAC students selected by each Visual Arts teacher.

Returning Festival Favorites

Spinx Kidsphere and Legacy Early College Kidsphere Music

Kidsphere on the north end of the festival (the intersection of Broad & Main streets) has been an Artisphere staple since the festival’s inception, welcoming thousands of children every year to participate in hands-on visual arts and crafts. Volunteers from ReCraft will lead the charge in this fun and interactive tent for kids of all ages, where budding young artists can create their own original artwork!  Kids will learn a variety of fine art and craft techniques while weaving their own textiles, making and decorating hats and masks, and using their imaginations to build an upcycled work of art at the Creation Station! The Straws and Connectors Zone is a must-do, where kids can contribute to a Kidsphere kid-sized sculpture.  Other activities include stations for handmade Mother’s Day cards, celebration hats, and yarn rope belts. DRUM Percussion Studio will lead interactive sessions for children to explore their musical genius with a variety of percussion instruments.  Kids will also be invited to make colorful and creative masks that they can then wear while parading with DRUM down Main Street throughout the weekend.   During these fun and lively parades, students from the T.L. Hanna art department will be showcasing their handmade wearables, created from upcycled materials.  Parades will occur Friday: 3:30PM; Saturday: 12:45PM and 5:15PM; and Sunday: 2:45PM.

Creative Opportunities

Bank of America Art Lab featuring the Art Center of Clemson

Since its introduction to festival programming in 2013, the Art Lab has quickly become a festival “must do” as it provides  DIYers an opportunity to flex their creative muscles under the instruction of local experts. Classes are free, and this year’s programming  lineup offers 22 different workshops, including wheel throwing, printmaking, needle felting, quilling, paper collage, and more.  Sign ups are live now at https://artisphere.org/exhibit/art-lab/.

David Zinn

David Zinn, illustrator and street artist, returns to Artisphere 2022 to surprise and delight patrons of all ages with his whimsical chalk creations. Using chalk and charcoal, Zinn integrates his temporary pieces into the local landscape. From Ann Arbor, MI (Zinn’s creative space) to Manhattan to Sweden, his loveable creatures have been featured in multiple cities worldwide. Zinn will also host a book signing for his new book, Chance Encounters: Temporary Chalk Art at MJudson on Thursday, May 5th from 5-7:30 p.m.

Interactive Exhibits

Returning to Artisphere 2022 are the Clemson University Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, & Mathematics (STEAM) Exhibit (featuring over a dozen interactive activities) and the Greenville Journal and Prisma Health Artists of the Upstate Juried Exhibition (spotlighting local artists). These special exhibits give  patrons a glimpse of artists at every stage of their career, from student to professional, and offer opportunities to  explore art as it intersects with modern day technology, health and life.

Wells Fargo Culinary Arts Cafe

The Greenville County School District Career Centers’ Culinary Program (Artisphere Culinary Arts Café 2017 Best in Show  Winner) returns to the festival, along with some of Greenville’s favorite restaurants, including The Burrow,  Persis Indian Grill, Society Sandwich Bar & Social Club and Barberitos.  Whether you crave tacos, samosa, or a hot chicken sandwich,  you’ll find your  happy medium at the Culinary Arts Café.

Live Music

WYFF 4 Broad Street Main Stage

This year’s music line-up hosts talented musicians from  Washington and Boston to Mancos, Colorado and Charleston and offers something for  everyone from R&B to Jazz, Indie to Americana and Funk to Rockabilly. Headlining acts include Aztec Sun, a Funk/Soul group from the Washington, DC and Ali McGuirk, a Soul/RB artist from Boston, MA. Artisphere will also present regional favorites and headliner The HIgh Divers (Charleston, SC), Jeff Thompson Trio (Asheville, NC), Brooks Dixon Band, Vilai Harrington and the Hamptones, and the Trapfire Brothers, all from Greenville, SC, among others. Check  out the full music line-up on www.artisphere.org/performing-arts.

The Furman University Performance Plaza featuring the Fred Collins Foundation Local Performing Arts Showcase

Returning this year is a full lineup of amazing performances by local performing arts groups, including Greenville Theatre, SC Children’s Theatre, and Centre Stage, as well as The Palmetto Statesmen, Vocal Matrix Chorus, and the Carolina Bronze Handbell Ensemble.  Those looking for an outdoor workout can enjoy a community yoga class Saturday morning led by Soul Yoga.  For the full schedule head to  https://artisphere.org/performing-arts-schedule/.

PNC Pop-up Street Stages

Scattered throughout the festival, these stages will entertain patrons of all ages!  With  performances by the Clemson Dholna Bollywood Dance Group, Dog Day Blue Jay,  and the Colorful Hat Circus & Variety, the pop-up street stages bring laughter, magic, and fun to the festival.  Find the full schedule here: https://artisphere.org/pop-up-stages/ “With 47 brand new artists and a whole host of exciting programs, both old and new, we are thrilled to welcome back Artisphere presented by TD Bank to its full scale,” stated Artisphere Board of Directors Chair David Beard. “This year’s combination of fine art and community engagement activities is the perfect way to celebrate Greenville’s dynamic arts and cultural community.” Find your happy medium at Artisphere, presented by TD Bank, May 6-8, 2022. For more information, visit  www.artisphere.org.  

Jason Rapp

Hispanic Alliance welcomes arts and education director

The Greenville-based Hispanic Alliance announced Gina Bridges as its arts and education director.

Bridges has experience in developing community-based programs, building community relationships and networks, developing strong partnerships within the school district, and creating culturally appropriate education and marketing materials to promote programs. She is an avid art enthusiast and has developed art programs within local schools that provide opportunities for youth to learn about and experience art. She has a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in international studies and Spanish from Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania and has completed graduate coursework and workshops in African American history and urban sociology at Penn State University.
The Hispanic Alliance fosters collaboration and connectivity among people, resources, and cultures to build thriving communities. Learn more at https://www.hispanicalliancesc.com/.

Jason Rapp

Glow Lyric Theatre seeks technical director

Glow Lyric Theatre is looking to fill the position of technical director for our 2022 season.

The season runs June 11-August 3, 2022 at the Kroc Center in Downtown Greenville and includes:
  • Elton John’s Aida,
  • Classic Broadway: Songs of the Golden Age,
  • and Frances Pollock’s new opera Stinney: An American Execution
Description: Glow produces two musicals and one opera during an intense and fast-paced 7 week production period. The shows run in rotating rep for the summer. The TD will be responsible for supervising and participating in the build of the rep season, supervising all build aspects, supervising daily/nightly set changeovers (sometimes two per day), budgeting the shows, communicating with designers, creating build drawings/schematics, and overseeing/managing the work hours and duties of the ATD/master carpenter, carpenter, and carpenter intern. The TD is a leadership role that makes sure the scenic elements are on-time and on-budget. This position reports to the production manager and executive director. Duties: Engineer, construct, build and install and strike all scenic elements for the summer season, set up carpentry shops for beginning of season, communicating with production manager regarding any general shop and supplies needs, restore carpentry shops at the end of the season, including updating the stock item inventory paperwork, determine and meet scenic deadlines according to the production schedule set by the production manager, manage and supervise all load-in and strike dates, ensuring that anything borrowed or purchased returns to proper facilities at end of season, attend all technical rehearsals, dress rehearsals, previews and production meetings for notes, communicate regularly with designers, production manager and executive director regarding budget tracking, design integrity, and notes, manage the budget and account for all scenic expenditures, including collection of receipts and invoices, attend four pre-season production meetings (beginning in March, may do so remotely), prepare necessary drawings/vectorworks, work with production manager and artistic director to supervise and assign running crew for each production, order, purchase, schedule delivery, or pick up necessary building materials, including equipment as needed, order necessary trucks and dumpsters for load ins, strike and transportation of set. Requirements: Share with Glow a respect for our values of access, advocacy, diversity, prudence, professionalism and collaboration, Self-motivated, have a positive attitude, love musicals, work safely and efficiently and exhibit professional, respectful behavior at all times. Some experience working in repertory/summer stock, Skilled in CAD or Vectorworks, 1 year of technical direction experience (can include summer stock/educational credits), mastery of wood and metal scenic construction and fabrication techniques and scenic engineering, ability to motivate, manage and coordinate staff members of varying skill levels. Ability to recognize, augment and/or fill in the gaps in the crew’s skill set. Ability to lift 50 lbs., climb ladders, and work in high places, Able to drive a 25’ box truck is a plus, ideal candidate would have a valid driver’s license and vehicle, their own computer to create drawings and manage paperwork, and their own set of basic tools. Compensation: $625/week with housing and travel included Please email jenna@glowlyric.com if interested.

Submitted material

New leader announced for Greenville visual arts hub

GCCA makes decision after national search

An extensive national search led Greenville Center for Creative Arts to its next CEO, Jess Burgess.

Burgess (right) comes to GCCA from Dogtown Dance Theatre in Richmond, Virginia where she has served as executive director since 2015. Her résumé includes 15 years of experience in nonprofit administration and the performing arts. She will work closely with GCCA’s stakeholders to chart a strategic path forward for continued success. According to the organization's news release, Burgess combines a passion for engaging programming, strong fundraising abilities, and creativity, all of which are essential to being the leader of a thriving arts organization. “I am thrilled to make Greenville, South Carolina my new home and help shape the arts community for years to come. Greenville Center for Creative Arts is in an outstanding place to make a lasting impact on the lives of artists and those who love art, and I am excited to help GCCA excel in the future,” Burgess said. In the announcement, GCCA Board Chair Yvonne Julian said, “... GCCA will have an enthusiastic, energetic, and experienced leader who will maintain the momentum we’ve achieved in our pursuit of sustainability and expanded reach in the Greenville community and beyond.” The center's current CEO, Kim Fabian, announced her retirement last fall. Burgess received a bachelor's in dance and communications from James Madison University, and a professional certificate in fund development from the University of Richmond Institute for Philanthropy. Burgess serves on the board of directors of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Central Virginia chapter as well as that of the James Madison University College of Visual and Performing Arts. The public is invited to meet Burgess at GCCA’s 7th birthday celebration to be held at the May 6 First Friday event, which coincides with the opening of a new art exhibition.

About GCCA

Greenville Center for Creative Arts is a non-profit organization that aims to enrich the cultural fabric of the community through visual arts promotion, education, and inspiration. For more information, visit www.artcentergreenville.org, call 864.735.3948, or check out GCCA on Facebook (Greenville Center for Creative Arts) and Instagram (@artcentergvl).

Jason Rapp

#SCartists: Teach at GCCA this summer

PROPOSAL SUBMISSION DEADLINE: Thursday, March 24, 2022


If you are an experienced visual arts instructor with a creative idea and a desire to share, we want you to be part of our summer schedule!

GCCA is currently seeking proposals for Summer Session I from June 6-July 8 and Summer Session II from July 18-Aug. 19, 2022. We welcome proposals for five-week classes and one-, two-, and three-day workshops. We strive to offer classes in a variety of mediums and techniques and have a special need this summer for instruction in printmaking and jewelry as we anticipate that our new classroom spaces dedicated to those mediums will be up and running very soon! Some examples of what we’re looking for include:
  • Introductory level printmaking classes and workshops like monotype/monoprint press printing, collagraph printing, relief printing from linoleum, and drypoint intaglio printing using acrylic plates
  • Jewelry workshops, including polymer clay and resin jewelry making, fabricating dimensional metal jewelry, wiring wrapping for beginners, beginner metalsmithing, introduction to enameling, and soldering instruction
We also have the need for:
  • Watercolor classes and workshops
  • Instruction in different drawing mediums
GCCA instructors include both working artists and professional educators who possess a willingness to communicate technique and process, strong technical skills, a friendly and welcoming approach, and the ability to teach classes that are open to a range of skill levels. We encourage proposals from our current instructors—and always love to connect with new ones! We hope to hear from you soon. For more information, contact Liz Rundorff Smith, our program director, at liz@artcentergreenville.org. SUBMIT A PROPOSAL HERE.  

Submitted material

Upstate juried exhibition to highlight women of impact

City of Women opens Friday in Greenville

Exhibition runs March 4-April 27

Upstate artists are set to help celebrate impactful Greenville women in an exhibition starting Friday at Greenville Center for Creative Arts (GCCA).

GCCA issued a call in late 2021 for art that highlights historical and contemporary women who have made a significant impact in the Greenville community. More than 50 artists submitted for judging by juror Jonel Logan, creative director of the McColl Center for Art + Innovation in Charlotte. Areas of recognition include healthcare and well-being, education, economic opportunity, science and technology, civic engagement, and (natch) arts and culture. This effort will culminate in a free public exhibition that will be featured through a virtual gallery on GCCA's website and in a special juried exhibition opening on First Friday, March 4, from 6-9 p.m. and on display through April 27. All appropriate entries will be included in the virtual gallery. Juror selections will be exhibited in GCCA’s Community Gallery and be eligible for $2,000 in prizes. Juror selections can be seen in GCCA’s Community Gallery. To view the virtual gallery and see all submissions, visit https://www.artcentergreenville.org/exhibitions/city-of-women. From March 4-6, the public can vote online for their favorite piece to receive a “People’s Choice” prize package of art supplies. Greenville Center for Creative arts is located at 101 Abney St. in Greenville. Greenville City of Women will run through April 27 on Tuesday-Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Free. Provided images below. Click to enlarge. [gallery link="file" ids="49154,49155,49153"]  

Jason Rapp

Eight competitors reach S.C. Poetry Out Loud finals

State finals to be held virtually March 5


for immediate release

COLUMBIA, S.C. – From among statewide submissions, judges selected eight finalists who now have a chance to represent South Carolina this spring in the national finals of Poetry Out Loud—an annual, nationwide recitation contest.

The South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) coordinates Poetry Out Loud South Carolina (POLSC), partnering with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation to bring the competition to the state’s high schools. The program seeks to foster the next generation of literary readers by capitalizing on the latest trends in poetry—recitation and performance. POLSC Coordinator Bonita Peeples once again arranged a 2021/2022 competition with a virtual structure. The first step, now complete, was inviting students in grades 9-12 to submit videos to twin regional competitions, each with its own set of different judges. Both regionals yielded four finalists to compete in the competition’s next step: virtual state finals on Saturday, March 5, 2022. The eight finalists come from four schools in Charleston, Greenville, and Spartanburg. Students from Region 1, roughly the lower half of the state, all come from Charleston County School of the Arts. They are:
  • Tea Allen
  • Kenneth Carrington
  • Natalie Holland
  • Adam Maierle
Finalists from Region 2, which is roughly the upper half of the state, represent three schools. The students are:
  • Emily Allison, 2021 state champion (Fine Arts Center of Greenville)
  • Harper Scott (Fine Arts Center of Greenville)
  • Catherine Wooten (Westgate Christian School of Spartanburg)
  • Caleb Xiao, 2021 first runner-up (Spartanburg Day School in Boiling Springs)
Adjudicating the virtual finals will be veteran Poetry Out Loud judges Al Black, Dr. Ray McManus, Michelle Reese, and Kimberly J. Simms. Each is an accomplished poet residing in South Carolina dedicated to training the next generation of poets. Each finalist will meet virtually to record three one-take recitations with Peeples and a prompter. The judges will review the recitations and determine a state champion and first runner-up. The state finals champion will receive a $200 prize and get to represent South Carolina in the national finals competition for the chance to win a $20,000 first prize. Cancelled in 2020 with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the national finals returned virtually in 2021 and will be virtual again in 2022. Find out more about the national competition here.
About the South Carolina Arts Commission The mission of the South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) 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 four areas: arts learning, community and traditional arts, artist development, and arts industry. 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

Two from S.C. among ’22 South Arts Emerging Leaders of Color

Leaders from Charleston, Greenville included

South Arts announced 18 cultural leaders of color from across its nine-state region have been selected to participate in professional development and networking opportunities.

The second cohort of Emerging Leaders of Color (ELC) has been selected, representing the next generation of cultural workers and arts administrators from across our region. These leaders will participate in a free multi-day professional development program specifically for arts administrators of color. This second Southern cohort will build on the success of South Arts’ first cohort and Western States Arts Federation's ELC program, which has been attracting, training, networking and promoting a new generation of diverse arts leaders since 2010. This partnership program between South Arts and colleagues at WESTAF provides tools, continued learning opportunities, and a network to administrators of color who seek to move into leadership positions in the arts and culture sector. Emerging Leaders of Color welcomes Victoria Rae Moore of TINYisPOWERFUL of North Charleston and Vaughn Newman of Vaughn Newman Dance of Greenville. Learn more about the other members of the cohort here. Keep reading for more on Moore and Newman.

Victoria Rae Moore

Victoria Rae Moore is a writer and co-founder of TINYisPOWERFUL — an interracial, intergenerational, grassroots organization and community hub linking artists, cultural workers, youth and tiny business partners to embrace THE ARTS AND THE SPIRIT OF THE ARTS as activators of sustainability; to support and promote TINY BUSINESS in the South as a vital part of neighborhood and commerce; and to build a MENTORSHIP LEGACY awakening in YOUTH a spirit of imagination, entrepreneurship and social engagement. Victoria is the executive director of TINYisPOWERFUL and received a three-year Partners For Change award from Alternate ROOTS and the Surdna Foundation, continuing a long history of art in/with community to affect structural and systemic change. Victoria's role as an arts administrator started in 2018 when she was hired as an assistant quickly advancing to the role of facilitator with an artist-led creative placemaking project - conNECKtedTOO by the Charleston Rhizome Collective - which was the only project in South Carolina supported by an ArtPlace America Award. As a multi-racial Black woman native to Charleston, SC, Victoria is committed to social change through the arts and to amplifying marginalized voices for more true, inclusive representation of the past and the present as we shape a future together. She studied dance at Charleston County School of the Arts and earned a BA in journalism and public relations from the University of South Carolina.

Vaughn Newman

Born in Philadelphia Newman began dancing at William Penn Arts Charter and continued training at Freedom Theater, PHILADANCO, & New World School of the Arts, Miami, FL. While at New World, he began performing with Momentum Dance Company and Brazz Dance Theater until a move to the Upstate in 2009. After choreographing for local theaters, dance studios, and the Peace Center for the Performing Arts, The Studio–Home of Vaughn Newman Dance(VND) opened its doors in 2018 offering dance instruction to Upstate communities, students, hobbyists, and pre-professional dancers. The Studio is the home of Greenville’s first Afro-American and professional contemporary dance company. Newman also founded ZAKI West African Drum & Dance Ensemble and ADAM Arts as community outreach programs that cross socio-economical barriers by making the arts accessible to the community, especially misaligned and underserved youths. Together, these outreach programs and Vaughn Newman Dance narrow the cultural divide through curated interactive performing arts experiences, Traditional West African drum & dance classes, and workshops.  

Jason Rapp

GCCA adds seven to board

This week, Greenville Center for Creative Arts (GCCA) announced seven new members elected to its board of directors.

According to a news release, they are:
  • Earle Furman, GCCA founder and chair, NAI Earle Furman, LLC
  • Daniel Hartway, Upstate SC business banking manager/SVP, First Citizens Bank & Trust Co.
  • Benjamin Hepner, attorney, Holder Padgett Littlejohn + Prickett
  • Blair Knobel, editor-in-chief, TOWN Magazine
  • Kate Lacher, artist & creative coordinator, Craig Gaulden Davis
  • Rhonda Rawlings, neighborhood engagement director, Mill Village Ministries
  • Heather Wheless, senior director of human resources, Thermo Fisher Scientific
In addition, the organization elected these officers:
  • Chair - Yvonne Julian, retired, sales executive, The Dow Chemical Company
  • Vice Chair - Bradley Wingate, director of visual & performing arts, Greenville County Schools
  • Treasurer - Tony Callander, retired, partner, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Secretary - Jim Gorman, studio artist
“We are thrilled that GCCA has attracted such a tremendous slate of new directors to help us strengthen our impact and achieve our strategic goals,” says Executive Director Kim Fabian. “Their collective talents will help to ensure long-term sustainability and foster meaningful economic and outreach impact through the education, advancement, and promotion of the visual arts.” GCCA also named two former directors as members of its Founder’s Circle: artist Patricia Kilburg, and philanthropist and retired business leader Tracy Hardaway. This distinction recognizes these GCCA founders for their vision and commitment to the organization.

About GCCA

Greenville Center for Creative Arts is a non-profit organization that aims to enrich the cultural fabric of the community through visual arts promotion, education, and inspiration. For more information, visit www.artcentergreenville.org, call 864.735.3948, or check out GCCA on Facebook (Greenville Center for Creative Arts) & Instagram (@artcentergvl).

Jason Rapp

Greenville Symphony streams education concert

Pssst. Looking for something to do?

The Greenville Symphony recently made its 2021 education concert available to all online. Support by the SCAC and Metropolitan Arts Council made it all possible! “Due to the pandemic, public school students were not able to attend our annual education concerts in person this year,” Music Director and Conductor Edvard Tchivzhel said. “Thanks to the generosity of the Metropolitan Arts Council and the South Carolina Arts Commission we were able to bring the concert experience to them. We couldn’t have done it without our dedicated musicians and education sponsors.”

Jason Rapp