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Statewide organization on arts and disabilities to create ornaments for National Christmas Tree display

VSA South Carolina and textile artist Arianne King Comer have been chosen to design and create ornaments for South Carolina’s tree for the 2012 National Christmas Tree display in President’s Park in Washington, D.C.  Artists and youth from each U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia were selected by the National Park Foundation to create 24 ornaments for their trees. “It is an honor to be selected, and we look forward to collaborating with North Charleston students, seniors and veterans -- some with disabilities and some without --  to create these special ornaments,” said Julia Brown, executive director of VSA South Carolina. Comer, a master batik and teaching artist for VSA South Carolina, will lead a workshop to create the ornaments on Friday, Nov. 9, from 9 am to noon at the Felix C. Davis Community Center, located at 4800 Park Circle in North Charleston. Other textile artists assisting with the workshop include Peggie Hartwell, Cookie Washington and North Charleston’s current artist-in-residence, Kristy Bishop. Ornaments will be made using batik, quilting and other textile design processes. The workshop is presented as a component of the City of North Charleston’s Veterans Day celebrations and is open to students from Stall High School and Gregg Mathis Charter School, as well as local seniors and veterans. Those interested in participating should contact Julia Brown at (803) 603-4450 or jbrown@arts.sc.gov before the workshop date, as space is limited. The 90th National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony (date to be announced) is one of America’s oldest holiday traditions. It began on Christmas Eve in 1923, when President Calvin Coolidge lit a Christmas tree in front of 3,000 spectators on the Ellipse in President’s Park. Each succeeding President has carried on the tradition of what has become a month-long event presented by the National Park Foundation (the official charity of America's national parks) and the National Park Service. In addition to the tree display, President’s Park hosts a variety of family-oriented holiday attractions, such as Santa’s Workshop, holiday performances, a Yule log, a nativity scene and model train display. Formerly known as Very Special Arts, VSA South Carolina is a nonprofit organization incorporated in 1986 to provide quality accessible arts experiences throughout S.C. for children, youth and adults with disabilities. Founded in 1974 by Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith, VSA has an international network which includes 37 state affiliates and 51 international affiliates. VSASC is affiliated with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts under the VSA /Arts Accessibility Program. For ticket information, talent announcements and other event details, visit www.thenationaltree.org.  


City of North Charleston welcomes Kristy Bishop as new Artist-in-Residence

The City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department has appointed contemporary fiber artist Kristy Bishop as Artist-in-Residence for 2012-2013. Bishop will share her talents and experiences with senior groups, public schools and other organizations in North Charleston. She is available for visual art residencies of 12-15 hours at a minimum of two-hour increments at North Charleston schools and is also available to host workshops for community groups of all ages. Art teachers and school liaisons may request free Artist-in-Residence services by contacting the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at (843)740-5854. Community groups are also welcome to submit requests, which will be considered on a first-come first-served basis. All project requests should be placed at least two weeks in advance with residences completed by the end of May 2013. Bishop, originally from Charleston, received a B.A. in Studio Art with a concentration in painting from the College of Charleston in 2008. In the spring of 2009, she moved to Las Vegas, Nev., where the beauty and fragility of the Mojave desert became the primary inspiration for her paintings. She began experimenting with fiber mediums, incorporating sewn and embroidered elements into her paintings. By the time she returned to Charleston in the summer of 2010, Bishop had transformed from painter to mixed media/fiber artist. Her most recent works are created solely from fabric, featuring hand-dyed silk that is cut, gathered and sewn. By hand dyeing the fabric, she creates a multitude of colors to use as her palette for creating new work. Thousands of tiny pieces of hand-dyed silk are manipulated to create large-scale abstract pieces that employ texture and color to convey a number of emotions. The North Charleston City Gallery will host an exhibition of Bishop’s work in January 2013. School liaisons, arts teachers and the public are invited to meet Bishop at a free gallery reception on Jan. 3, 2013, from 5-7 p.m. More information about the Artist-in-Residence program can be found on the Cultural Arts section of the City’s website. For more information about Bishop, visit her website. Photo above: Untitled (vertical transition), detail Via: North Charleston Cultural Arts Department [caption id="attachment_1035" align="aligncenter" width="332"]Kristy Bishop Kristy Bishop[/caption]