Archive for the ‘Art Awards’ Category

Arts Council of Henderson County, NC, Announces Awards for “15th annual Bring Us Your Best Art Exhibition”

September 30, 2018

The Arts Council of Henderson County has announced the winning artists for its current exhibition, “Bring Us Your Best XV”. Winners were announced at the opening reception for the exhibition on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018. “Bring Us Your Best XV” was on display in the Blue Ridge Conference Hall of the TEDC Building on the Blue Ridge Community College campus through Friday, Sept. 17, 2018.

The awards were announced by Arts Council Board Chair, Pat McAfee, and presented by Joan Jackson, who represents the Wax Family Memorial Funds, a sponsor of the awards. The following artists received awards:

1st Place/2-dimensional – Hamed Mahmoodi, “Veil in Glass”
1st Place/3-dimensional – Bonnie Joy Bardos, “Gaia: Mother Earth”
1st Place/Photography – Phyllis Peterson, “A Drink of Blue”
1st Place/Fine Craft – Holland Van Gores, “Accent”
2nd Place/2-dimensional – Barb Zimmerman, “Enchanted Woods”
2nd Place/3-dimensional – Janet Hickey, “Santos of the Repurposed Book”
2nd Place/Photography – Walter Arnold, “So Little Time”
2nd Place/Fine Craft – David Adler, “Diamond Ball”
3rd Place/2-dimensional – Jill Hsieh, “Woman in a Scarf”
3rd Place/3-dimensional – Ed Foster, “Waiting”
3rd Place/Photography – Ken Weaver, “How to Run a Train”
3rd Place/Fine Craft – Karen-Eve Bayne, “Umbrella Magnolia”

First place winners received $250, 2nd place winners received $150, and 3rd place winners received $100.

In addition to the above awards, Jan Partin, President of the Board of Directors for the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville, presented a special award of $250 to Catherine Langsdorf for her painting titled “You are not Alone.” This “One Planet, One World” award was selected based on how well the artwork is representative of a world community recognizing the inherent worth and dignity of all beings, the oneness and interdependence of all life. The award is sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville.

The Starving Artist Fine Art Supplies and Custom Framing Shop awarded ten Honorable Mention awards. $25 gift cards for the Starving Artist Shop were awarded to the following artists: Suzanne Ball, Karen Eve Bayne, Lucy Clark (fine craft), Lucy Clark (photography), Maureen Chapman, Tina Duncan, Two Silversmiths – Jerry & Linda Hunter, Al Junek, Claire DeLong Taylor, and Cynthia Wilson.

Henderson County photographer, Walter Arnold, and John Patrick McAfee, author, sponsored the “Artist’s Choice” award, which was selected and announced during the opening reception. Artists who have artwork in the exhibit voted for their choice to win the Artist’s Choice award at opening reception. Connie Poulnot won the $300 cash prize for her oil painting titled “Memories.”

The People’s Choice Award, based on the votes of all gallery visitors, has yet to be awarded. The winner will receive a $250 gift certificate from The Starving Artist Fine Art Supply & Custom Framing Shop, and will be announced after the last day of the exhibition, Sept. 17, 2018. The public is invited to visit the exhibition and cast their ballots for the People’s Choice Award.

For more information contact the Arts Council of Henderson County at 828/693-8504 or (acofhc@bellsouth.net). Visit our website at (www.acofhc.org).

In addition to The Wax Family Memorial Funds, “Bring Us Your Best XV” is also sponsored by The Starving Artist Fine Art Supplies and Custom Framing Shop, the Dr. Minor F. Watts Fund at the Community Foundation of Henderson County, and the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville.

The Arts Council of Henderson County is a community organization that promotes, advocates for, and nurtures the arts in Henderson County and Western North Carolina. Its office is located at 401 N. Main Street, 3rd floor Hendersonville, NC 28792 (entrance on Fourth Avenue West).

The Arts Council is supported in part by the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources; several funds administered by the Community Foundation of Henderson County, Henderson County Government, and Henderson County Travel and Tourism.

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Leo Twiggs, Represented by Hampton III Gallery in Taylors, SC, Wins 1858 Prize for Contemporary Southern Art

August 11, 2018

Orangeburg, SC, artist Leo Twiggs, represented by Hampton III Gallery in Taylors, SC, wins the1858 Prize for Contemporary Southern Art, sponsored by Society 1858 and the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC.


“Requiem for Mother Emanuel #5”, 2016, by Leo Twiggs; batik; 30 x 24 inches; courtesy of the artist.

Born in the Lowcountry town of St. Stephen, SC, in 1934, Leo Twiggs studied art at Claflin College in Orangeburg and went on to earn a Masters degree from New York University and a doctorate in art education from the University of Georgia. In 1964 he began his thirty-four year teaching career at South Carolina State University. A year later he began experimenting with batik, a wax-resist method of dyeing textiles. He was attracted to the medium for its rich tradition and improvisational nature.

Much of Twiggs’ work explores family history, cultural heritage, and how the past is manifest in contemporary life. His series titled “Requiem for Mother Emanuel” recently traveled throughout the southeast, earning acclaim as a powerful tribute to the nine church members slain during the horrific shooting at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston.

A reception will be held for Twiggs at the Gibbes Museum of Art on Sept. 19, beginning at 7pm.

Hampton III Gallery is located at 3110 Wade Hampton Blvd., Suite 10, in Taylors, SC, 29687.

For further information call 864/268-2771.

701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC, Calls for Applications for the 701 CCA Prize – Deadline Sept. 1, 2018

July 29, 2018

701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC, announces the fourth installment of the 701 CCA Prize, a biennial, juried art competition and exhibition for professional South Carolina artists 40 years and younger. Share this information with all SC artists who may be eligible. The project takes place this year with a juried process resulting in an November – December exhibition for the competition’s three finalists and an award celebration announcing the winner. This exhibition will then travel to Lake City, SC, for a second January – February exhibition.

The project’s purpose is to identify and recognize artists 40 years and younger whose work is exemplary in its originality, shows awareness of artistic developments and is of high artistic merit. The winner is selected by a panel of three art professionals. The jurors for the 701 CCA Prize 2018 will be announced at a later date. The 701 CCA Prize will be awarded to one young professional South Carolina artist for outstanding art production since Jan. 1, 2019. Aside from the age requirement, eligible artists must currently live in South Carolina. They also must fulfill several practical requirements outlined in the application guidelines. The application fee is $25.

Eligible artists are invited to apply for the 701 CCA Prize 2019 by completing and submitting the application package by Sept. 1, 2018. The application guidelines can be found at (www.701cca.org/701-cca-prize). You can apply directly through Submittable at this link (https://701centerforcontemporaryart.submittable.com/submit).

The 701 CCA Prize winner will receive:
A six-week, paid residency at 701 CCA;
A solo exhibition at 701 CCA;
An ad in a national art publication concurrent with the solo exhibition.

South Carolina Watermedia Society Announces Spring Digital Show Winners

May 31, 2018

The South Carolina Watermedia Society is pleased to announce the winners for its Inaugural Spring Digital Show. The show includes artwork by 56 SCWS members.

Congratulations to:

Best of Show – Jackie Wukela


Work by Jackie Wukela

2nd Place – Lynda English

3rd Place – Gary Johnson

Honorable Mention: Denise Greer, Lynne Hardwick, Anne Hightower Patterson, Kathy Kitz and Steven Nisbet.

Toni Elkins, an artist from Columbia, SC, judged the show. She is a signature member of 18 elected societies including NWS, Watercolor USA Honor Society, and Nautilus Fellowship of International Society of Experimental Artists. She has won over 160 national awards including Best-of-Show San Diego Watercolor. In 1999, Governor Jim Hodges awarded her The Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Award for her contributions to SC art. She also won the award for contributions to SCWS. The work of Elkins has been selected as juried into over 300 national exhibitions the latest being selected to represent Missouri Watercolor in China in 2018.

You can either click here (scwatermedia.com/2018-spring-digital-show-2) to view the entire digital show, or copy the link and paste into your browser.

Thank you to everyone who participated.

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

HotWorks Announces Professional Artist Award Winners at Asheville Fine Art Show in May 19 & 20, 2018

May 31, 2018

Hot Works’ 2nd annual Asheville Fine Art Show held May 19 & 20, 2018 indoors at the WNC Ag Center’s David Event Center in Fletcher, NC, brought professional artists to showcase and sell their art in all forms of disciplines including: painting, sculpture, clay, glass, wood, fiber, digital, jewelry, photography and more. This fine art and fine craft show was juried by art professionals with an art education and/or art show experience. Many artists were in North Carolina for their very first time. All artwork was original and personally handmade by the artists who participated in the show. There was something for everyone, in all price ranges.

The Asheville Fine Art Show is sponsored by Hot Works, a professionally produced fine art fair with an outstanding national reputation for producing top-notch art shows. Hot Works has four other established quality juried fine art and fine craft shows in Fort Myers and Boca Raton, Florida and West Bloomfield, Michigan – all voted top 100 art shows in the nation. Institute for the Arts & Education is the associated 501(c)3 non-profit organization which focuses on visual arts, cultural diversity, community enrichment and fostering art education among youth.

As part of our commitment to bring art education into the community, the Youth Art Competition for students in grades K-8 or ages 5-13 was integrated into the art fair. This year included 22 entries from 9 schools and one home-schooled. Sponsored by Institute for the Arts & Education, there were four prizes with $250 in Youth Art awards. This program exposed students to the entrepreneurship of doing something they love for a living, which is creating their art. It also brought families to the art show who may not have otherwise attended, and exposed them to great art.

In order to recognize exceptionally talented artists in the show, there were seventeen Professional Artist Awards. Constance “Connie” Vlahoulis, a resident of Mills River and painter with 30+ years’ experience, was the “Artist Judge”. On Saturday, she judged the artists, with criteria centered on technique/execution, originality, and booth appearance.

Following the selection of awards, a “Prize Patrol” team distributed the awards. Included were:
· Constance “Connie” Vlahoulis, Artist Judge
· Mayor Rod Whiteside, Town of Fletcher
· Patty Narozny, Executive Producer, Hot Works Asheville Fine Art Show

Each of the 17 winning artists were met and greeted by the “Prize Patrol” team and provided with a beautiful two-foot long ribbon that they displayed in his/her booth for the remainder of the art show. It was a very positive experience for the artists to meet Mayor Whiteside, who took the time to attend the art show, be there to distribute ribbons, and to congratulate the winning artists in the show. On behalf of Hot Works and the artists in the show, we are very grateful to have had Mayor Whiteside present at the show; we look forward to returning to the WNC Ag Center for many more years to come.

May 2018 Asheville Fine Art Show Professional Artist award winners were:

Two – Best of Show – $500 Award Winners: Lily Engebretsen, Wood, Fort Mill, SC, and Kent Epler, Sculpture, New Albany, IN

Five – $100 Awards of Excellence: Amy Brandenburg, Jewelry, Asheville, NC; Michael Brennan, Mixed Media, Tallahassee, FL; Scott Deming, Wood, Butler, TN; Tanya Gerard & Rob Thomas, Wood, Beach Mountain, TN; and David Goldhagen, Glass, Hayesville, NC

Ten – Awards of Distinction – Non-Monetary: Derrick Crossland, Wood, Islamorada, FL; Holly Sue Foss, Printmaking, Minneapolis, MN; Raul Hernandez, Mixed Media, Hialeah, FL; Bill Hickman, Sculpture, Raleigh, NC; Craig Kassan, Wood, Franklinton, NC; Don McCoy, Jewelry, Salida, CO; Steve Miller, Wood, Black Mountain, NC; Sheree & Ken Sorrells, Fiber, Waynesville, NC; Kim Thompson, Jewelry, Waynesville, NC; and Kathleen Weir-West, Fiber, Hendersonville, NC

Save the Dates
Hot Works’ bi-annual Asheville Fine Art Shows
October 27 & 28, 2018 – outdoors at Pack Square Park, Asheville
May 18 & 19, 2019 – indoors at WNC Ag Center, Fletcher

For more info visit (www.hotworks.org).

City of North Charleston, SC, Announces “2018 North Charleston Arts Fest Judged Fine Art & Photography” Competition Winners

May 31, 2018

Fine artists and amateur and professional photographers from across the state were invited to participate in the “2018 Judged Fine Art and Judged Photography Competitions & Exhibitions”, organized annually by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department and presented May 2-6 as a component of the 2018 North Charleston Arts Fest. A total of 343 fine art entries were accepted in the categories of oil, acrylic, watercolor, drawing, printmaking, pastel, and 2D mixed media. Cash awards totaling $6,350 were made at the sole discretion of the judge, Zinnia Willits. Willits is Director of Collections and Operations at the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC. She received her MA in Public History from the University of South Carolina and has worked at the Gibbes since 2003, where she manages the museum’s permanent collection and oversees museum operations as well as logistics for its active exhibition and loan programs.

A total of 169 entries were accepted in photography, which were split into the divisions of Professional/Advanced and Amateur and categorized as color or monochrome. Cash awards totaling $1,450 were made at the sole discretion of the judge, David “Sully” Sullivan. A native of Charleston, SC, Sullivan has lived and worked in New York and California, and currently resides in Charleston, where he maintains a studio when not on location. He regularly shoots on film and his work runs the gamut of fashion, portrait, lifestyle, travel, editorial, and product photography. Recent clients include Volvo, Oscar de la Renta, and The Wall Street Journal.

In addition to awards given by the judges, five pieces were selected for City of North Charleston Purchase Awards. These selections will be added to the City of North Charleston’s Permanent Public Art Collection, which is on display within North Charleston City Hall throughout most of the year.

Congratulations to the winners:
Best in Show – Fine Art
“Tranquilo” (oil) by Gretchen Trees (Charleston, SC)

Outstanding Merit – Fine Art
“After A Long Day” (mixed media) by Susanne Frenzel (Mt. Pleasant, SC)

Mayor’s Choice – Fine Art
“Spring I” (acrylic) by Amanda Richards (Charleston, SC)

Best Oil – Fine Art
“Landscape Looking Glass” (oil) by Rick Austin (Folly Beach, SC)

Best Acrylic – Fine Art
“I Saw You in a Dream” (acrylic) by Christine Blythe (Charleston, SC)

Best Drawing – Fine Art
“I’ve Heard A 1000 Stories” (drawing) by Bob Graham (Mt. Pleasant, SC)

Best Pastel – Fine Art
“Sugar & Spice & Everything Nice” (pastel) by Laura Cody (Summerville, SC)

Best Watercolor – Fine Art
“Main Street” (watercolor) by Victoria Ellis (Summerville, SC)

Best Mixed Media – Fine Art
“Gold Rush” (mixed media) by Deborah Kinnard Barrineau (Johns Island, SC)

Best Printmaking – Fine Art
“Moon” (printmaking) by Katherine Martinez (Goose Creek, SC)

Best Portrait/Figure – Fine Art
“Smiling at Dede” (drawing) by Dorthea Gerber (Summerville, SC)

Best Landscape – Fine Art
“Spin Drift” (oil) by Faye Sullivan (Mt. Pleasant, SC)

Best Still Life/Interior – Fine Art
“Ceiling-East Bay St. III” (watercolor) by Lynn Mizell (Johns Island, SC)

Best Animal/Wildlife – Fine Art
“Elephant Charging” (oil) by Robert Maniscalco (North Charleston, SC)

Best Abstract/Experimental – Fine Art
“Rowan” (oil) by Caroline McLeod Self (Summerville, SC)

Honorable Mentions – Fine Art – “Praise Dance” (oil) by Marvin Youngblood (Charleston, SC); “Designer Pets, Designer People” (acrylic) by Meyriel J. Edge (Summerville, SC); “Flying Home” (acrylic) by Sally Accetta (Goose Creek, SC); “Tempestuous” (acrylic) by Tracy Gransraw (Mt. Pleasant, SC); “Porch Pup” (drawing) by Kirsten Kelly (North Charleston, SC); “Model Figure” (pastel) by Peggy Howe (Mt. Pleasant, SC); “Three’s Company” (watercolor) by Suzanna Wolfe (Mt. Pleasant, SC); “Overflow” (mixed media) by Sage Jadrnick (Chester, SC); “The Fleet” (acrylic) by Sean Patrick (North Charleston, SC); and “Fest” (acrylic) by Pedro Rodriguez (Goose Creek, SC)

Professional Photography – Color
1st place – “The Look” by Jennifer Hunt (Andrews, SC)
2nd place – “Egret Eye” by Raymond C. Murray (Charleston, SC)
3rd place – “After the Rain” by Matthew Krausmann (Summerville, SC)
Honorable Mentions – “Morning in the Marsh” by Kathy Hare (Charleston, SC); “Early Morning Beach Walk” by Vanessa Kauffman (Charleston, SC); “Below the Milky Way” by Robert Loe (North Charleston, SC); “Oh, the Places You’ll Go” by Pamela Oliveras (Hanahan, SC); “Three Black Hats” by Sonny Regal (Mount Pleasant, SC); and “Universal Love” by Jim Miller (Mount Pleasant, SC)

Professional Photography – Monochrome
1st place – “The Boys Watching the Girls” by Jim Miller (Mount Pleasant, SC)
2nd place – “Washed Out” by Sean Hartman (Summerville, SC)
3rd place – “Distinguished” by Angie Bridges (Summerville, SC)

Amateur Photography – Color
1st place – “Naomi” by Olga Terechova (Charleston, SC)
2nd place – “A Maine Daybreak” by Rick Dandridge (Summerville, SC)
3rd place – “Flowers and Vegetable Garden” by V. Kirsten Colquitt (Charleston, SC)
Honorable Mentions – “The Two of Us” by Phillip W. Ravenel (Goose Creek, SC) and “Believe” by Heike Helbig (Summerville, SC)

Amateur Photography – Monochrome
1st place – “Park Knight” by Paul Bryant (Summerville, SC)
2nd place – “Making Memories” by Scott Lynch (North Charleston, SC)
3rd place – “Feminine Youth” by Renee Porcu (Goose Creek, SC)
Honorable Mentions – “Resurrection” by Paul Bryant (Summerville, SC); “Sign of Experience” by Paul Bryant (Summerville, SC); “Mere Appearance” by Francis McLeod (Charleston, SC); and “M- powered” by Christopher Cross (Moncks Corner, SC)

For information about additional exhibition opportunities offered by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, call 843/740-5854, e-mail to (culturalarts@northcharleston.org), or the Arts & Culture section of (www.northcharleston.org). For details on the North Charleston Arts Fest, visit (www.NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com).

City of North Charleston, SC, Announces 2018 “SC Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition” Winners

May 31, 2018

Fine craft artists and artisans from across South Carolina were invited to participate in the “17th Annual South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition”, the state’s only juried fine craft competition and exhibition. Organized annually by the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, in North Charleston, SC, the show was presented May 2-6 as a component of the 2018 North Charleston Arts Fest.

Following an extensive pre-jury process, 42 applicants were asked to participate and 81 entries were submitted in the categories of clay, fiber, metal, glass, wood, and 3D mixed media. Cash awards totaling $6,500 were made at the sole discretion of the juror, Rachel Reese, Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at Telfair Museums in Savannah, GA. After making her selections, Reese stated, “The quality of artwork submitted is a testament to the ongoing value that visual artists contribute to material culture, and this presentation of artworks exemplifies the vibrancy, imagination, energy, and great talent of South Carolina artists working today.”

After awarding ribbons, Reese also selected pieces from the show to assemble a “South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Traveling Exhibition”, which will be available to tour the state through the South Carolina State Museum’s 2018/2019 Traveling Exhibitions Program. The Traveling Exhibitions Program gives galleries, museums, and art centers across South Carolina the opportunity to request the exhibit to tour their facilities, thus providing additional exposure for the selected artists.

In addition to awards given by the juror, four pieces were selected for City of North Charleston Purchase Awards. These selections will be added to the City of North Charleston’s Permanent Public Art Collection, which is on display within North Charleston City Hall throughout most of the year.


“A Lively Live Oak” (fiber) by Peg Weschke (Hilton Head Island, SC) – Best of Show

Congratulations to the winners of the 2018 “SC Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition”:

Best of Show – “A Lively Live Oak” (fiber) by Peg Weschke (Hilton Head Island, SC)

Outstanding Merit – “Sashay” (clay) by Gary Huntoon (Travelers Rest, SC)

Outstanding Merit – “Mosaic Cherry Bowl” (wood) by Dale Fort (Charleston, SC)

City of North Charleston Purchase Awards – “Rising Waters” (encaustic) by Marty Biernbaum (Charleston, SC); “Spot On: Chartreuse Raku #1” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton, SC); “Summertime Tea Time” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville, SC); and “A Small Disturbance in the House of Pluto” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant, SC)

Honorable Mention – “Summertime Delight” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville, SC); “Charleston Box #66” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant, SC); “Refraction” (fiber) by Connie Lippert (Seneca, SC)
“Segmented Bowl” (wood) by Kenny Teague (Charleston, SC); “A Little Birdie Told Me…” (mixed media) by Bob Thames (North Charleston, SC); “A Farewell to Arms” (wood) by Robb Helm Kant (North Charleston, SC); “Featherweight” (stoneware) by Justin Guy (Trenton, SC); “Swirls III” (fiber) by Beth Andrews (Greer, SC); “Three Stone Necklace” (mixed media) by Rachel Weiss (Charleston, SC); “Melting Point” (porcelain) by Annie Rhodes Lee (Folly Beach, SC)’ “Lean on Me” (clay) by Sherrie Nesbitt (Summerville, SC); and “Spot On: Chartreuse Raku #1” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton, SC)

SC Palmetto Hands Traveling Exhibition Selections:
“Summertime Delight” (clay) by Marsha Nordyke (Summerville, SC)
“A Lively Live Oak” (fiber) by Peg Weschke (Hilton Head Island, SC)
“Go Ask Alice” (embroidery on canvas) by Liz Holt (Conway, SC)
“Green Vessel” (felted fiber vessel) by Pam Shanley (Summerville, SC)
“Ivy Relief” (wood) by Ben Pendarvis (St. Helena Island, SC)
“Old School” (mixed media) by Patz Fowle (Hartsville, SC)
“Charleston Box #66” (mixed media) by Robin Howard (Mount Pleasant, SC)
“Segmented Bowl” (wood) by Kenny Teague (Charleston, SC)
“Solution” (metal and wood) by Robb Helmkamp (North Charleston, SC)
“Dr. Seuss Teapot” (clay) by Mark Vail (Charleston, SC)
“Petting Zoo” (fiber) by Evelyn Beck (Anderson, SC)
“Shawl Spring Sunrise” (textiles) by Iryna Toney (Summerville, SC)
“Mosaic Cherry Bowl” (wood) by Dale Fort (Charleston, SC)
“Three Stone Necklace” (mixed media) by Rachel Weiss (Charleston, SC)
“Lean on Me” (clay) by Sherrie Nesbitt (Summerville, SC)
“Spot On: Lapio Raku #2 and Denim #3” (clay) by Nancy Waterhouse (Bluffton, SC)
“Sashay” (clay) by Gary Huntoon (Travelers Rest, SC)

For more information about the “South Carolina Palmetto Hands Fine Craft Competition & Exhibition” and other exhibition opportunities, contact the City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at 843/740-5854, e-mail to (culturalarts@northcharleston.org), or visit (NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com). Organizations interested in hosting the traveling exhibition should contact the South Carolina State Museum Traveling Exhibits Program at 803/737-4159 or e-mail to (tep@scmuseum.org).

Outer Banks Community Names People’s Choice Artist – Daniel Pullen

February 27, 2018

After tallying over 200 nominations, Dare County Arts Council announces that Daniel Pullen has been selected as the 2018 People’s Choice artist. Pullen is an award-winning, internationally published documentary photographer. His life and work centers around pursuing the art of the photograph. The Hatteras Island native began pursing photography in his teens and gained notoriety for his unique style: a marriage of art, surf, and documentary photography by his early 20s. Today, Pullen teaches photography workshops at his studio in Buxton and photographs surfing, wildlife, weddings, portraits and everything in between. He is set to publish his first book, “The Independent Waterman” later this year.


Daniel Pullen. Photo courtesy of Daniel Pullen Photography.

“I feel really honored to receive this award, especially since I’m in the company of so many great artists in Dare County,” said Daniel Pullen. “Thank you to everyone who voted!”

Dare County Arts Council’s People’s Choice exhibit featuring Pullen’s photography will be on display in DCAC’s Gallery in downtown Manteo Nov. 2-30. An opening reception will be held on Friday, Nov. 2, at 6pm, where the community will be able to meet Daniel and view his work, while enjoying hors d’oeuvres and live music. The solo exhibition of Pullen’s photography in November is the anchor of DCAC’s 2018 exhibition schedule.

The idea for the People’s Choice exhibit came about as a way to engage the Outer Banks community’s enthusiasm for the arts, and to build awareness of both established and emerging artists in Dare County.

“We were hoping that our community would respond to our call for input, but I had no idea we’d get the kind of response that we did,” said Dare County Arts Council Executive Director Chris Sawin. “Our thanks go out everyone who voiced their opinion; the feedback was tremendous.”
Dare County Arts Council plans to use the list of People’s Choice nominations to help in the selection for their 2018 Emerging Artist Series, which is a program DCAC created with TowneBank in 2017.

Dare County Arts Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization dedicated to encouraging the arts in Dare County through advocacy, enrichment and opportunity.

For more information about the People’s Choice exhibit, visit (www.DareArts.org/peopleschoice) or call 252/473-5558.

Awards Announced at Opening of “2018 Pee Dee Regional Art Competition” at Florence County Museum in Florence, SC

January 31, 2018

Thursday evening, Jan. 25, 2018, marked the formal opening of the “2018 Pee Dee Regional Art Competition” at the Florence County Museum’s Waters Gallery in downtown Florence, SC.

This year’s competition juror was contemporary South Carolina artist Hollis Brown Thornton, of Aiken. The “Pee Dee Regional” has been presented annually since 1954 and is one of the longest-running competitive art exhibitions in the state.

Attendees at the reception were welcomed by Jumana Swindler, chair of the Florence County Museum Board, followed by remarks from Blake Pate, representing corporate sponsor Chick-fil-A, who announced the winning selections, congratulating the artists with a presentation of the cash awards.

The $1000 First Place cash prize was awarded to competition newcomer Kevin Spaulding, for his oil painting, “Hearth”. The painting is one of two works by Spaulding in the exhibit. Spaulding, who recently relocated to Florence County, has been an accomplished artist for over 20 years. He received a degree in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University before living and working in New York.


Kevin Spaulding standing by his work “Hearth”.

“Spaulding’s entries are rich, darkly-toned, and technically proficient,” said museum curator Stephen W. Motte. “His subject matter is rendered within a natural environment, but avoids being landscape painting, it appears isolated in place and time, like classical still life. The two works in the competition are photo-realistic in detail, yet minimal in composition. The result is something both traditional and contemporary. I look forward to seeing more from this artist in the future.”

A Second Place award of $600 was given to Haley Ard, also of Florence County, for her large mixed media work, “The Kitchen Sink”. Although perhaps the youngest artist in the exhibition, Ard is no stranger to high-profile competitions, and is currently exhibiting work in Spartanburg, SC.

In 2017, she received due attention for her assemblage-portrait “Made-Up”, composed of cosmetics and accessories. The work, exhibited at ArtFields in Lake City, was intended to raise questions about the purpose of wearing makeup, and whether it is used to enhance beauty, or cover to it up.

“Like ‘Made-Up’, Ard’s collage ‘The Kitchen Sink’ is an excellent example of the relationship between media and message,” Motte said. “This is one of the most difficult lines to walk for a lot of artists, and Ard is showing a lot of maturity in her handling of concept with craftsmanship.”

Third Place ($250) went to Treelee MacAnn, a veteran printmaker, for her serigraph “Congaree Forest Ribbon”. MacAnn has received numerous honors in past Pee Dee Regional exhibitions for her works on paper, which often originate in photographic imagery before being reinterpreted in print.

The Honorable Mention ($100) this year went to Alexandra Knox, of Loris, SC, for her sculptural mixed media wall piece, “Five to Nine”. The work, created from wax casts of the artist’s hands held together with horse hair, is one of two by Knox in this year’s exhibition.

About Knox, competition juror Hollis Brown Thornton had this to say, “… stunning to see in person. Incredibly organic and visceral. It is difficult to add humanity and vulnerability to an object using technique and materials, and Knox’s ‘hands’ have done that beautifully.”

Thornton is a professional artist and native of Aiken, South Carolina. He received his BFA from the University of South Carolina and has been working professionally since 2000. His work has been exhibited in France, Germany and Japan, and has appeared in “Elle” magazine and “The New Yorker”.

Thornton became Gallery Director at Mongerson Gallery in Chicago in 2001 where he also worked for two years as an art preparator. Returning to South Carolina in August 2005, Thornton and his wife opened the clothing boutique Threads, in downtown Aiken.

Thornton’s recent large scale drawings often examine the malleable nature of memory in both personal experience and popular culture. His colorful compositions are carefully rendered with photo-realistic effect, at times using only permanent marker, a medium which alludes to the concepts at play beyond the artworks’ surfaces.

When asked about his approach to making art, he says, “Everything I do works with the balance between precision and the inherent limitations of making something by hand.”

Thornton’s recent works will be the subject of a solo exhibition at the Florence County Museum Waters Gallery in the fall of 2018.

As in previous years, the “2018 Pee Dee Regional” was opened to submissions of contemporary art created within the last two years by all artists within the state’s northeastern Pee Dee region.

The exhibition is comprised of 30 works selected from nearly 200 submissions in multiple media. “We have seen a notable increase in entries this year, a lot of which are coming from artists new to this competition,” Motte commented.

“I hope that, with this annual competition, the Florence County Museum can continue to engage with contemporary artists, and encourage the creative intelligence in the state. Artists should know that they are a part of something outside the studio… that the physical works they create are assets that give intangible value to the world around them.”

The reception was organized and catered with refreshments prepared by museum volunteers. Flower arrangements were provided by Consider the Lillies, of Florence.

The exhibit is now open to the public and will remain on display through March 30, 2018 in the FCM Waters Gallery, 135 South Dargan St. Visitors are invited to join the awards selection by casting their ballots for the Jo Ann Fender Scarborough People’s Choice Award. Voting for the People’s Choice Award is open through Friday, March 23. The winner will be announced Monday, March 26.

The exhibit can be viewed at the Florence County Museum Waters Gallery, Monday – Friday: 10am – 5pm, now through March 30, 2018.

For more information about the “Pee Dee Regional Art Competition” and other upcoming exhibits and events, please contact the Florence County Museum at 843/676-1200 or visit the website at (www.flocomuseum.org).

Oconee County Arts & Historical Ambassador Award Was Awarded to Martha File in Upstate, SC

January 31, 2018

The Oconee County Arts & Historical Commission announces Martha File as the recipient of the 2017 Arts and Historical Ambassador Award. File is the inaugural winner of the Ambassador Award, created to recognize a volunteer with “Outstanding Contributions” in the fields of Art, History or Culture in Oconee County. The Ambassador Award honors achievements that extend beyond the expected and make a difference in our community.

Martha File, a founding member of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail (UHQT), has worked diligently to educate and grow the efforts of South Carolina’s first quilt trail. Oconee County was the first County in South Carolina to embrace the quilt trail concept and there are now over 200 quilts on display across Oconee, Anderson and Pickens Counties. File has coordinated trail expansion, recruited numerous volunteers and as a result, the trail now has a studio in each of the three counties. In addition, she has worked with other counties across South Carolina and neighboring states to introduce and provide resources for additional quilt trails.

Mari Noorai, chairperson of the arts and historical commission says, “Martha’s service to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail has promoted Oconee County and its heritage. Her dedication and unwavering initiative make Martha the 2017 Arts & Historical Ambassador. Many thanks to Martha and all our exemplary volunteers that help us to ‘Celebrate Oconee.'”

Phil Shirley, director of parks, recreation and tourism for Oconee County says, “I remember Martha’s very first pitch to me about the idea of a quilt trail in 2009. I never imagined it growing to over 200 quilts and spreading across the Upstate. File’s dedication and leadership bring a shining light to our community and we congratulate her on being named the 2017 Oconee County Arts and Historical Ambassador of the Year.”

File says, “On behalf of the all the volunteers of the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail we are honored to have been selected for this award. Helping preserve and promote the history of the Upstate through quilts and sharing the stories of those who made them is a very rewarding experience for us. We would like to thank the many people who have helped us on the journey and we look forward to the new adventures that await us.”

File will be recognized and presented an engraved plaque at the Spring Arts and Historical reception. In addition, a donation will be made in her honor to the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail.

For more information on the Upstate Heritage Quilt Trail, visit (www.uhqt.org).