Dr. Pecou explains his background and how he went from a student who was focused on being an animator to becoming a renowned fine artist. He speaks about the differences in being a fine artist as opposed to a graphic artist.
I ask him to share his advice for young people who desire to follow their art, but who receive push back due to a lack of knowledge in our community about the “business” of art. He mentions the School of Art at Grambling State where students have been persuaded not to pursue art due to our community’s lack of understanding about careers in the art world. He talks about curators, museum directors, collectors and other professions around the world of art.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
The Halsey Institute presents a double feature of films by director Olympia Stone, Double Take: The Art of Elizabeth King and The Original Richard McMahan. Double Take engages the viewer in the work of sculptor and stop-action filmmaker Elizabeth King, who embarks on each new project by posing a single question to herself: “Can this physically be done?” The other film focuses on the multitalented outsider artist Richard McMahan and his quest to painstakingly re-create thousands of famous and not-so-famous paintings and artifacts in miniature.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
Nikky Finney knew she was going to write about the slaughter in Charleston, and she kept trying to find a way into the horror.
“I had been trying to write about the Emanuel Church murders for two years, but I didn’t want to come in through the front door,” said Finney, 61, speaking from the sunny confines of the Agnes Scott College campus.
A National Book Award-winner, Finney is one of three notables appearing this week at Agnes Scott as part of the school’s Writers’ Festival.
The shootings at the black church had been “talked about and talked about,” she said. “I wanted to come in through a window.”
That opportunity came when she was commissioned by the Southbound Project to respond to some of the project’s photographs of the “new South.”
(The Southbound enterprise, a photography collection and exhibit, is curated by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art in Charleston.)READ THE FULL STORY [+]
Organizing “the largest exhibition of photographs of and about the American South in the 21st century” is no small objective. The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art’s sizeable ambition is nearly matched by the physical heft of the catalogue accompanying the exhibition, Southbound. Fifty-six contemporary photographers are represented, each with five, full-page reproductions. Additional images are then shared on a companion website.
In their Introduction, curators Mark Sloan and Mark Long seek to delineate how their chosen artists challenge, reframe, and move beyond entrenched and often problematic ways of depicting the South. While emphasizing the necessarily incomplete, open-ended nature of their project, they do nonetheless provide some conceptual frameworks.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
The Kiawah Island Art and House Tour is sponsored by Arts, etc., an organization whose philanthropic focus is to bring visual, performing and literary arts to the students on Johns and Wadmalaw Islands. Proceeds from this year’s tour which is scheduled for Friday, April 5 will support the following organizations:
The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
With the assistance of a professional visiting artist, the program will be an immersive educational opportunity for students at Haut Gap Middle School. Students will research the changing landscape and economics of Johns and Wadmalaw Islands through a series of workshops. This will culminate in the creation of a communal art piece for display at the school using basic printmaking techniques.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston has been open for 34 years. And for every one of those years, they’ve made time for an exhibit called Young Contemporaries, a collection of multi-discipline art created entirely by CofC students. Every year, one can see an array of paintings, sculptures, photos and other pieces all created by students — and they don’t have to be art majors to participate.
“Any student enrolled for this academic year, not just studio art majors, can submit work,” says Brian Watson Granger, the manager of exhibits and programs. “So it’s a great experience seeing the work done by students who aren’t art majors. To be able to see how, for example, a computer science major or a chemistry major might do work that’s informed by their majors, I think that’s really fascinating.”READ THE FULL STORY [+]
Aldwyth, a South Carolina-based visual artist, is the recipient of the annual award bestowed by the Eben Demarest Fund, a Pittsburgh Foundation fund.
Aldwyth’s art ranges from large murals created with found images to assemblage sculptures. Her work has been recognized through solo exhibitions and prestigious awards including the 2015 South Carolina Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts. Aldwyth said she will use the $20,000 grant that comes with the award to hire workshop assistants to help finish a series of three collages that she has been unable to complete on her own, due to difficulties she now experiences when using scissors.
She earned her first solo exhibition through Mark Sloan, the director and chief curator of the College of Charleston’s Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art. Sloan was first exposed to Aldwyth’s work when a colleague at the South Carolina Arts Commission told him about an unusual application he received.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
Nikky Finney, the John H. Bennett, Jr. Endowed Professor of Creative Writing and Southern Letters, was commissioned to write poems based on photographs in the “SOUTHBOUND” exhibit at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston. The result is an electrifying dialogue—powerful poetic meditations on southern visual history.
As Professor Finney describes this “once-in-a-lifetime project”:
When the organizers of SOUTHBOUND contacted me about composing one ekphrastic poem for the exhibit, I wasn’t sure I had time to do it. Then they sent me the photographs to peruse…The images hit me like a ton of bricks. The photographs rocked me, hugged me, made me sit up straight, lean forward. The southern landscape being photographed was my land and I had never seen it so naked, so revealed, so revelatory. Art does this to us. The power of revelation and candor was on every page. I ended up submitting 4 poems instead of one and I could have submitted 12.READ THE FULL STORY [+]
Visiting Charleston doesn’t have to break the bank—you can get a great sense of the city while saving your vacation budget to spend on fried chicken, she-crab soup, and craft cocktails.
Enjoy culture at Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
The art department at the College of Charleston devotes a generous portion of its ground floor on Calhoun Street to gallery space. Rotating exhibits of art and film are mounted here, as are free lectures. Recent exhibits included a wide-ranging photography show about all aspects of life in the South. This is serious art curation—many of the Halsey’s exhibits go on to tour galleries around the country. (See what’s on right now by checking Halsey’s website.)READ THE FULL STORY [+]
On our final day of posts for Southbound: Photographs of and about the New South, we feature a selection of the co-curators Mark Sloan and Mark Long’s essay on emplacing the new south. I think that there is no better text to summarize the exploration of Southern identity and culture that we’ve featured throughout the week, so without further adieu…
Emplacing the New South- Mark Sloan and Mark Long
Each component of this project’s title—Southbound: Photographs of and about the New South—lends itself to scrutiny. Southbound refers to the twin ideas of heading south and the lingering effects of charged stereotypes that limit our ability to see the region clearly. Photographs refers to documentary and fine art images but, in this case, does not include constructed or fabricated photographs. New and, particularly, South are perhaps the most slippery elements of the title. South because, like all regions, it is necessarily a function of how we define the parameters—climatological, historical, cultural, and so on. New for the many instances that adjective has qualified developments in the South, often purportedly definitive in terms of change, and always to create distance from lesser and sometimes unsavory moments in the region’s history. Indeed, we considered calling the exhibition New South2, then cubed, and might have settled on New Southn, if it weren’t too cryptic to be clever.READ THE FULL STORY [+]