Archive for the ‘Art Awards’ Category

Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC) Awards Museum Leadership Award to Andrew R. Stout, Executive Director, Florence County Museum, Florence, SC

October 9, 2019

The Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC) is proud to announce the winner of the Museum Leadership Award. The winner was chosen from a wide range of entries across the Southeastern United States. The SEMC Awards Committee, co-chaired by Julie Harris, Catherine Pears, and Robin Reed, honors outstanding colleagues who have helped shape the world of museums.

The Museum Leadership Award, initiated in 1994, recognizes mid-career museum professionals who have shown significant advancement within the profession by leadership in museum activities at his or her institution, within the museum profession as a whole, and especially in the southeast region. Award eligibility requires ten years of experience as a museum staff member and a minimum of five years immediate past tenure with a museum in the SEMC region.

The winner of this year’s award is Andrew R. Stout, Executive Director, Florence County Museum, Florence, SC. Andrew R. Stout began his museum career at the Florence Museum (SC) in a small converted residence. Since 2001 he has diligently advocated for museum support and helped to champion its impact on Florence’s cultural, educational, and economic future. Stout was named the director of the newly formed Florence County Museum system in 2009 and assisted in cultivating funding for its construction and annual operational support. During this process Stout coordinated all necessary policies and procedures for the newly structured system along with the development of needed professional staff. In 2013 funding was allocated to acquire 140 works of art that compose the Wright Collection of Southern Art. This collection was featured at the opening of the Florence County Museum in October of 2014. In 2018 Andrew worked to secure funding for the acquisition of two significant collections of art by 20th century artist William H. Johnson and his wife Holcha Krake, over fifty works collectively. The Florence County Museum has an annual average attendance of 24,000 visitors and is always free to the public.

Since 2014 Stout has served on the executive committee for the South Carolina Federation of Museums and has served as the President since 2017. He has assisted in the formation of the Wright Foundation for Southern Art, Florence County Museum Foundation and the Wilson High School Class of 1945 Scholarship fund.

The award will be presented during the SEMC Annual Meeting Awards Luncheon October 23, 2019, at the Charleston Marriott.

For more information, visit (SEMCdirect.net) or contact John Witek, Manager of Communication and Member Services by calling 404/814-2047 or e-mail to (jwitek@semcdirect.net).

West Main Artists Co-op in Spartanburg, SC, Announce the Winners of its First Regional Juried Show

October 8, 2019

The first-place winner in West Main Artists Co-op’s first four-state juried art exhibit, “WMAC 2019” is Cindy Shute of Lockhart, SC, for her oil-on-linen painting “Peacemaker: Hrair Balian”. She receives a cash prize of $2,500 that was given in memory of Frank P. Cyrill, Jr.


Work by Cindy Shute

Second prize of $1,000 was taken by Gordon Dohm of Greenville, SC, for his photograph “Fungi Fantasy”.


Work by Gordon Dohm

And, third-place of $500 was won by Tracey M. Timmons of Spartanburg, SC, for “Manacle of Justice”, a bracelet made of vitreous enamel, copper, silver, brass, and photography.


Work by Tracey M. Timmons

The seven merit awards of $100 and $250 went to Mark Flowers of Alexander, NC; Lee Sipe of Columbia, SC; Sabrina Barilone of Macon, GA; Tom Dimond of Seneca, SC; Christina Dixon of Roebuck, SC; David Stuart of North Augusta, SC; and Martha Worth of Hilton Head, SC.

“WMAC 2019” opened on Saturday, Sept. 14, and closed on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019. It was open to all adult visual artists in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee. Two-hundred-forty-one (241) artists from the four states applied, and 66 were admitted into the show based on the judgement of jurors Ann DerGara and Mike Vatalaro.

The winners were announced on Saturday, Sept. 21, during a reception and awards ceremony. Seventy-four (74) works of art in this exhibit were on display at the Co-op, which is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-4pm. There is no charge to see the exhibitions.

“We could not be happier with our first juried show,” Chair, Beth Regula said. “This is something we had wanted to do for several years, and it took more than a year of planning, but it was worth it. Having a show of this magnitude and with these cash prizes establishes West Main Artists Co-op as an art agency that is leading Spartanburg in its quest to be an art Mecca in South Carolina and throughout the South. It says we have the creativity, the knowhow, the professionalism, the resources, and the desire to take the Co-op to the next level. Next year will be even better!”

“I’m so excited to be a part of WMAC’s world,” Shute said. “This first exhibition was as professionally conducted as I have ever seen. When I was told I was Best in Show, at the time, honestly, I was shocked. It’s not that I didn’t think my painting is good. As a professional artists mature, we know our good work from our less successful efforts — I think that’s a key part of being a professional. So I wasn’t surprised to have been included in the show.

“When I arrived that evening and saw the body of work I was thrilled. Virtually every piece in the exhibition is good — very good. A couple of pieces took my breath away. So, I felt particularly honored to be included. With ‘Peacemaker’, I had pushed myself into a new space with portraiture. In my early work I tended to avoid background, contextual elements, thinking at the time that the subject should convey their story a priori — that the essence of the sitter should be codified in the presentation of their likeness, and if successful, the minimalist approach would say everything that needed to be said. So this new approach for me, including symbolic elements to tell the story, was a big leap.

“I honestly feel validated,” she continued. “I wasn’t sure if the piece worked. So now I’m really charged up about this new direction, and ready to take on more portrait-stories. And I’m so very grateful to WMAC for giving me a big hug along the way!”

The Co-op is a membership-based nonprofit arts agency with more than 50 members, who are visual artists and performing artists. It is housed in a former Baptist church near downtown Spartanburg on West Main Street. Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, the Co-op houses 31 artists studios, two stages, three galleries, a printery, a ceramics studio, and the largest collection of for-sale locally made art in Spartanburg. Each month, the Co-op normally installs three exhibits by its members and guest artists.

In their jurors’ statements, Ann DerGara said: “ I am amazed at the quality of work that was entered. I think that opening the show to additional states has made this become an important show for the region and Spartanburg. The arts are growing rapidly in the region and this show will make Spartanburg known as art venue as well as Asheville and Greenville. As the Arts grow so does the economy. WMAC produced this show and jury with professionalism and expertise.”

Mike Vatalaro said: “The very nature of a juried exhibition celebrates a broad range of medium and imagery. I enjoyed the task of identifying works that well represented the mediums chosen, techniques accomplished and the subjects investigated. The exhibition reveals a broad selection of work which I believe demonstrate an individual vision within both conventional and experimental genres. I was very impressed by the quality and richness demonstrated in all of the mediums displayed. I hope you will find each work invites close examination and has something unique to offer.”

A list of all accepted work can be found online at (www.WestMainArtists.org).

“This is a vast and diverse show,” Regula said. “I invite the public to come see it and to take in the talent and creativity that surrounds us here in the South. A large show such as this one, expands our appreciation for the art that is readily available to us. It makes a statement that West Main Artists Co-op are striving and succeeding at making Spartanburg THE art community in South Carolina and beyond.”

Haywood County Arts Council in Waynesville, NC, Offer Grants to Regional Artists – Deadline Sept. 30, 2019

September 11, 2019

The Haywood County Arts Council in Waynesville, NC, is now accepting applications for North Carolina Arts Council Regional Artists Project Grants (RAPG) through September 30, 2019. The RAPG workshop for interested artists will be held on Monday, Sept. 16 at 5:30pm at the Jackson County Library, 310 Keener Street in Sylva, NC.

The grants will fund artists in Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson and Macon counties at any phase of their professional development. Grants may cover equipment purchases, professional development training, marketing, and more. Projects must occur between December 1, 2019 – June 5, 2020. The deadline for applications is September 30. Grantees will be notified by Oct. 31. Final Reports will be due Friday, June 5, 2020. For application information, visit (www.haywoodarts.org/regional-artist-project-grant). In the west, grant awards to artists generally range from $500 to $1,000 and follow a competitive application and review process.

The Haywood County Arts Council is supported in part by the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources. The Regional Artists Project program is managed through a partnership with the North Carolina Arts Council and local arts organizations throughout western North Carolina working as a consortium. Consortium partners include the Cherokee County Arts Council, Clay County Historical & Arts Council, Stecoah Valley Cultural Arts Center, Haywood County Arts Council, and Jackson County Arts Council. Since 1985, the North Carolina Arts Council has provided funds for the Regional Artists Project program to support professional artists. The regional consortium of western North Carolina arts partners matches the NC Arts Council to create a pool of funds for the artists.

For more information, contact Leigh Forrester, RAPG program administrator at 828/452-0593 or e-mail to (director@haywoodarts.org).

Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, Announced the Winners of the “33rd Annual Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition”

July 29, 2019

On behalf of this year’s talented juror, Bill Brown, it is our pleasure to announce the winners of the “33rd Annual Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition”. As our honored juror, Brown spent considerable time with each accepted sculpture in this year’s competition examining craft, message, and visual impact.

Brown lead a comprehensive tour of the campus Sculpture Walk on Saturday morning, July 27th. There were nearly 200 guests who attended the reception. Many thanks to those of you who were able to join us for the awards ceremony.

Please join the Turchin Center and Appalachian Summer Festival staff in congratulating this year’s winning sculptors:

Rosen First Place Award: Bob Doster (Lancaster, SC), “A Memorial”, 2014-2018

Rosen Second Place Award: Glenn Zweygardt (Alfred Station, NY), “Adam Meets Eve”, 2018

Rosen Third Place Award: Derek Chalfant (Elmira, NY), “Back Home Again”, 2016

Please join the staff at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts, the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts and everyone involved with An Appalachian Summer Festival in congratulating this year’s winners.

These works will be on view throughout the Appalachian State campus through May 31, 2020.

For further information call the Center at 828/262-3017 or visit (www.turchincenter.org).

Arts Council of York County in Rock Hill, SC, Announces Winners of “30th Annual Juried Competition”

July 21, 2019

The Arts Council of York County announced the awards for the “30th Annual Juried Competition” at a free, public reception at the Center for the Arts, 121 E. Main St., Rock Hill, SC, on Thursday, July 11, 2019 at 5:30pm. Works accepted to the “Juried Competition” are on exhibition in the Dalton Gallery at the Center for the Arts from June 14 – July 28, 2019.

Each year, the “Annual Juried Competition” is open internationally to artists 18 and older. Only original work, created in the last two (2) years, and not previously shown in the Dalton Gallery at the Center for the Arts is accepted. All forms of media are eligible, including video.

This year’s juror was Amy Herman is an artist based in Charlotte, NC. She received her MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago, and her BFA in Fine Art from Michigan State University. Her photographs have been shown on the international level and are included in the permanent collections of the Kiyosota Museum of Photography, Cassilhaus, and The Museum of Fine Arts Houston. She teaches photography at Central Piedmont Community College and co-directs Goodyear Arts.

There were 196 entries by 89 artists from 40 cities and 8 states. Of those entries, Herman selected 35 works to be displayed in the “30th Annual Juried Competition” exhibition in the Dalton Gallery at the Center for the Arts.


Work by Lila Shull

Awards were presented to:

Gerald and Barbara Schapiro Best of Show – “Bright Edges” by Lila Shull of Knoxville, TN
1st Place – “801” by Dana Jones of Greenville, SC
2nd Place – “Since III” by J. Michael Simpson of Rock Hill, SC
3rd Place – “Body” by Rebecca Lipps of Charlotte, NC
Honorable Mention – “Dark Matter” by Todd McDonald of Seneca, SC
Honorable Mention – “Man with Handcrafted Polyhedron” by Orion Wertz of Pineville, NC
Honorable Mention – “And Then There Were Five” by Brianna Wilson of Kingstree, SC

1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place Awards are sponsored by Kathy and Larry Wilson.

O’Darby’s Fine Wine & Spirits is the presenting sponsor of the “30th Annual Juried Competition”.

The Arts Council is headquartered in downtown Rock Hill, a state-recognized cultural district.

For more information on Arts Council events, contact the Arts Council of York County at 803/328-2787, e-mail to (arts@yorkcountyarts.org), or visit (www.yorkcountyarts.org).

SC Artist Lee Malerich Wins Art Award in Galesburg, IL

March 18, 2019

On Mar. 8, 2019, over 200 people attended the opening reception for the “53rd GALEX Competition & Exhibition” at the Galesburg Civic Art Center. Local SC artist, Lee Malerich of Neeses, SC, was among 74 artists chosen for her wood sculpture, “Dreamgirl”, from a field of 255 artists. Malerich was also given the Rob Reed Memorial Sculpture Award – just one of six prizes available. This exhibition is sponsored by First Mid Bank & Trust and will be on display through Apr. 6, 2019 in the Joanne R. Goudie Gallery.


Dreamgirl by Lee Malerich

“GALEX” is an annual national juried exhibition that is one of the longest continuously running competition and exhibitions in the country. Expanded nationally in 1967, it has been a mainstay for the Art Center’s exhibition calendar. This year, 74 artists from 22 states were selected to participate, submitting 75 individual pieces of art that represents a variety of media, including oil, watercolor, acrylic, collage, photography and sculpture.

The Juror, Harlow Blum, professor emeritus of art at Monmouth College (1959-1999) awarded over $2,500 in prizes. He has continued to create collage paintings from his studio in Monmouth. Harlow B. Blum received his BFA (Painting) from the University of Illinois (1956), MA (Painting) Michigan State University (1959), and MFA (Printmaking) Syracuse University (1966).

“GALEX” and other programs of the Art Center are sponsored in part by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency which receives support from the State of Illinois and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Galesburg Civic Art Center is located at 114 E. Main St. in Galesburg, IL. Art Center hours are Tuesday through Friday 10:30am to 4:30pm and Saturday 10:30am to 3pm. Admission is free.

For more information about exhibitions, workshops and events, please contact the Art Center at 309/342-7415 or visit (www.galesburgarts.org).

SC Arts Commission in Columbia, SC, to Honor Nine Recipients with 2019 Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts

March 18, 2019

Nine South Carolinians are to be honored by the South Carolina Arts Commission with the 2019 Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts—the state’s highest arts honor.

The following recipients from their respective categories are being recognized for outstanding achievement and contributions to the arts in South Carolina:

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT Cecil Williams, Orangeburg

ARTIST Tyrone Geter, Columbia

INDIVIDUAL Kathleen (Kathi) P. Bateson, Hilton Head Island

ARTS IN EDUCATION Simeon Warren, Charleston (Individual) and S.C. African American Heritage Commission, Hartsville (Organization)

BUSINESS Hampton III Gallery, Taylors

GOVERNMENT Florence County Museum, Florence

ORGANIZATION Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston and Columbia Stage Society (Town Theatre), Columbia (Special Award)

Further info about these receipients can be found at (https://www.dropbox.com/sh/plf40ffa55oxh5g/AAAksiSWeKNQxxytp5yBM8DQa?dl=0).

Tyrone Geter One of Neema Fine Art Gallery’s Artists in Charleston, SC, is Awarded Residency to Yaddo in Saratoga Springs, NY

January 28, 2019

Neema Fine Art Gallery artist, illustrator and educator, Tyrone Geter has accepted an invitation from The Corporation of Yaddo to participate in a 3 week residency at the prestigious Yaddo in Saratoga Springs, NY, from Feb. 21-Mar. 13, 2019. In accepting the invitation, Geter will join the ranks of some of the world’s most accomplished and iconic artists in both 20th and 21st centuries who have taken up residency at Yaddo. American novelist and short story writer, John Cheever, wrote that the “forty or so acres on which the principal buildings of Yaddo stand have seen more distinguished activity in the arts than any other piece of ground in the English-speaking community and perhaps the world.”

Collectively, Yaddo artists have won 74 Pulitzer Prizes, 29 MacArthur Fellowships, 68 National Book Awards, and a Nobel Prize. Notable Yaddo artists through the turn of the millennium include James Baldwin, Jacob Lawrence, Langston Hughes, Leonard Bernstein, Truman Capote, Aaron Copland, Philip Guston, Patricia Highsmith, Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, Martin Puryear, Katherine Anne Porter, Amy Sillman, Clyfford Still, and David Foster Wallace. More recent guests include Terry Adkins, Laurie Anderson, Jeffrey Eugenides, Sheri Fink, and Matthew Weiner. Yaddo currently welcomes approximately 220 guests a year from all over the world. Though much has changed since 1900, Yaddo’s mission has remained constant. In recent years the Board of Directors has reasserted Yaddo’s commitment to aesthetic daring, social egalitarianism and internationalism, and the support of artists at political risk.

In a career that spans across two continents, Tyrone Geter has built an international reputation as a world-class artist, painter, sculptor, illustrator and teacher. The recently retired Associate Professor of Art at Benedict College in Columbia, SC, grew up in Anniston, AL, during a time defined by strict segregation laws and social injustice. With a population of less that 25,000, Anniston was a site of numerous acts of racial violence during the Civil Rights Era. The immediacy of these events and an inherited legacy of spiritual strength and fortitude against all the odds inform and shape Geter’s work.

Geter received his Master’s of Fine Art from Ohio University in 1978 with an emphasis on painting and drawing. In 1979, Geter relocated to his beloved and deceased wife’s home country of Zaria, Nigeria, a move that proved to be a turning point in his development and growth as an artist. For seven years he lived, drew and painted among the Fulani and local people of Northern Nigeria. During this period he created numerous paintings that captured the richness and depth of the cultures of Northern Nigeria. He describes the experience as an experience that taught him ”to understand the nature of life in a society where life was nature and sometimes both hard and cruel.” Those seven years in Nigeria proved to be the most important influence in his life and art. He returned to the United States in 1987 and a teaching position at the University of Akron where he transformed his experience in Nigeria into the most powerful work of his career.

His work has been exhibited at the Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, SC, Florence Museum of Art, Florence, SC, City Gallery at Waterfront Park, Charleston, SC, Center for Afro-American Artists, Boston, MA; Butler Institute for American Art, Youngstown, OH; Hampton Institute College Museum, Hampton, VA; Museum of Fine Art, Boston, MA, to name a few. His honors include first place, MOJA Arts Festival, Charleston, SC; first place Robert Duncanson Award from Taft Museum, Cincinnati, OH; artist fellowship grant from Foundation for the Arts and Humanities, Boston, MA and grant from Columbus, Ohio Arts Council.

Edmund Barry Gaither, director and curator of the Museum of the National Center of Afro-American Artists, and consultant at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston is quoted as saying, “Geter has distinguished himself as a consummate realist able to render in spirit and form a world of peoples–especially black people. His eyes, honed over decades, miss no characteristic gestures, nor do they overlook any hidden features of peculiar interest. His grasp of color allows him to express skin tones with unmatched radiance and accuracy. His hands deftly outline with elegance and power the physical features of his subjects.” Gaither goes on to say, “It cannot be questioned that he knows how to construct space, and fill it with figures and artifacts whether drawn or painted, of exceptional beauty and grace. In short, Geter is a fully developed wizard of his media, endowed with enormous psychological perception and intellectual wit, and he has shown repeatedly that he can coral these powers in the production of his art.” Gaither concludes that, “Tyrone Geter creates compositions that indisputably speak of black realities from black perspectives, while they are also profoundly American. Through pathos, humor and acidic commentary, Geter’s art presents a new visual vocabulary for America’s intractable problems of racial justice, social acceptance, and collective healing.”

Will South, chief curator of the Columbia Museum of Art said, “Geter explores through his art the thorny issue of uniting different ethnicities in America and understanding each other without stereotypes. Tyrone takes that on,” South said. “He’s not a politician, and yet he is. By default, he makes statements that people listen to, and that’s powerful.”

Geter himself said, “My work is not supposed to allow you to walk past and not feel. I believe that one of our problems in society is that we’ve learned not to care. We see something happening to someone, we say ‘oh, wow, that’s too bad,’ and you go on about your business and that keeps happening. Mine was to make us feel like we are one with the human race.”

Geter is represented by Neema Fine Art Gallery, Charleston, SC’s newest art gallery featuring original works of art by both established and standout emerging African-American artists who are from or who currently reside in South Carolina. Located at 3 Broad St., Ste. 100, and positioned at the start of Charleston’s Historic Gallery Row, ironically Neema Fine Art Gallery is located in the former home of Walkers, Evans and Cogswell, printers of lithograph copies of the Articles of Secession and Confederate money and bonds. It is rumored that the basement of 3 Broad was also part of the Underground Railroad.

Gallery owner, Meisha Johnson says she, “can’t think of a better artist on which to bestow the honor of a residency at Yaddo upon at this critical point in history than artist, illustrator and educator Tyrone Geter. Tyrone consistently and unequivocally produces groundbreaking work that affirms, uplifts, challenges and reveals, consequently creating a path to racial and social healing. We look forward to seeing what works Tyrone is inspired to create as a result of his experience at Yaddo.”

For additional information, contact Meisha Johnson, Owner, Curator & Gallery Director at Neema Fine Art a Gallery at (neemagallery@gmail.com), call 843/353-8079 or visit (www.neemagallery.com).

West Main Artists Co-op in Spartanburg, SC, Receives 2018 ‘Business Supporter of the Year’ Award from SC Art Education Association

December 27, 2018

West Main Artists Co-op in Spartanburg, SC, received the 2018 “Business Supporter of the Year” award from the South Carolina Art Education Association. The award was presented to Co-op Chairperson Beth Regula on Dec. 1, 2018, in Greenville by Cindy Riddle, the Association’s President-Elect and Assistant Superintendent of Visual & Performing Arts for Spartanburg School District 1.

“On behalf of West Main Artists Co-op, I want to thank everyone who has worked to make this recognition possible,” Regula said. “I want to especially thank Jane Nodine and Susanne Gunter for taking the initiative to write the letters of recommendation. Most importantly, I want to thank the member artists of West Main Artists Co-op because they are the ones who are out in the community and here in our studios and galleries finding creative ways for the Co-op to be involved and relevant. There is indeed a business side to art, and West Main Artists Co-op works very hard to be an active – and creative – member of the business community.”

In her letter of support, Distinguished Professor Emerita of the University of South Carolina Upstate Nodine said: “USC Upstate Art has maintained studio space at WMAC and offered that as an annual award to a deserving student. We have sponsored and partnered with WMAC in workshops and group exhibitions, and USC Upstate students have worked at the Co-op in internships that earn them academic credit and give them valuable field experience.”

Dr. Gunter, the chair for Art and Design at Converse College, said in her letter, “WMAC is a true partner to area schools, colleges, and universities. This fall, students in the Converse Arts Management program will be working to help with the first annual multi-state juried exhibition, providing students with a unique opportunity to assist with all levels of administrative tasks to put on a major exhibition. WMAC provides ‘work residencies’ to help struggling artists to provide a studio and membership. This is critical to the success of many young artist, in particular.”

South Carolina Art Education Foundation (Association) is a chapter of the National Art Education Association (NAEA), which advances visual arts education to fulfill human potential and promote global understanding. NAEA is dedicated to providing you with connectivity, resources, and opportunities to enrich your classroom, enhance your career, and inspire your creativity. Connect to a worldwide network of like-minded artists and educators representing K-12 art educators and administrators, college and university professors, preservice students studying art education, researchers and scholars, museum educators, teaching artists, and more.

The mission of West Main Artists Cooperative is to create a community of artists wherein members mentor and support one another; to provide affordable studio, display, and performance space to established and emerging artists living in and around Spartanburg, South Carolina; and to provide the public with opportunities to view original art and to interact with the artists.

To learn more about WMAC, please visit online at (www.WestMainArtists.org).

Fletcher Williams III of North Charleston, SC, Wins Award from The Griffith/Reyburn Visual Arts Fund

December 14, 2018

Fletcher Williams III of North Charleston, SC, is the 2018 recipient of the Lowcountry Artist of the Year Award from The Griffith/Reyburn Visual Arts Fund.

“With this award, I was able to utilize an array of materials collected over several years and craft them into a 7ft house-like structure indicative of vernacular architecture and agricultural practices unique to the lowcountry,” says Williams.


Homestead by Fletcher Williams III

“Throughout the past two years, I’ve dedicated a significant portion of my practice to exploring, collecting, and documenting communities within the lowcountry that are representative of African American entrepreneurship and ingenuity. It is common for me to scour my familiar urban terrain but just recently I began venturing into rural South Carolina where I’ve come across vestiges of master craftsmanship, agricultural expertise, and architectural beauty. Homestead is an assemblage of the most iconic fragments collected during those explorations.”

“The overall design of Homestead was inspired by a multi-use barn near the outskirts of Walterboro, SC,” adds Williams. “It is a grand structure that housed grain, hogs, cauldrons, and farming tools. It is an elegant matrix of rafters and raw timber columns enclosed by dull corrugated tin. I’ve mimicked these fixtures in Homestead by creating an intricate exposed rafter system using weathered picket-fence and wrapping the core structure with rusted tin roofing recovered from a Freedman’s Cottage located on upper Meeting Street in Charleston, SC. The haint-blue concave section of the structure is comprised of tongue-and-groove siding taken from a small vacated home located only a few miles from the barn. And to represent the barn’s agricultural component, the sculpture is decorated with a series of rusted rebar hooks identical to those used to aid farmers in the butchering of livestock.”


Fletcher Williams’ studio in North Charleston, SC

Fletcher Williams III (b. 1987) is a North Charleston, SC, based interdisciplinary artist whose theoretical and conceptual art making practice is rooted in southern vernacular. Williams studied drawing, painting, print making, graphic design, and sculpture at The Cooper Union, where he received a BFA in 2010 and worked for several years thereafter as a freelance graphic designer. While the core of Williams’ education focused on the visual arts, a significant portion of his education was dedicated to studying ritual theory through the lenses of anthropology and sociology. These concepts play an important role in his later works. In 2013, he returned to Charleston and began creating multimedia objects and installations that incorporate historical and contemporary narratives of culture and utility that are unique to the lowcountry. Currently, Williams works out of his single car garage located in the Park Circle neighborhood of North Charleston.


View of an exhibition of works by Fletcher Williams III at 701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC

The Griffith/Reyburn Visual Arts Fund was created in 2003 by Michael Griffith and Donna Reyburn as an endowment with Coastal Community Foundation. The endowment provides the annual “Lowcountry Artist of the Year Award” to support the creation of a work of visual art that represents an aspect of the South Carolina Lowcountry’s unique life, culture, or environment— its “look and feel.” The award is intended to assist the artist during creation of an original work of art which is then the personal property of the artist, to keep, show or sell at his or her discretion.

For further info visit (www.fletcher3.com).