Past Comments

December Issue 2008
by Tom Starland

Post Election

The voters of America have spoken. We have a new President-Elect. Now, it's time for us to start rebuilding the America the world once held as its leader - its shining example of freedom and justice for all. It's not going to be easy - sacrifices by all will be needed, but we can do it. We have to - we can't go on the way we have.

For those who suffered through my political opinions - it's over. You won't hear anything about politics again from me for some time - 4 to 8 years at least.

SC's Blockbuster Exhibition

Tickets go on sale at the Columbia Museum of Art in Columbia, SC, on Dec. 15, 2008, for the Museum's exhibition, Turner to Cézanne: Masterpieces of the Davies Collection, National Museum Wales, which opens Mar, 6, 2009 and continues through June 7, 2009. The exhibit features 53 stunning and important works of art by artists including Turner, Renoir, Monet, van Gogh and Cézanne, among others. Tickets are: $15 adults; $12 seniors, military, students; free children 5 and under. Museum members receive free entry with a reservation. Call 803/799-2810 for tickets and to reserve a date to see the exhibit. Group admission is $12 per person for 10 or more people, call 803/343-2209 for group sales and reservations.

The Other Carolina Arts - Reaching Out

Our online version of Carolina Arts, found at ( has now gone past the 300,000 hits count per month. In Oct. 08 we received 325,932 hits. This is good news for all the visual arts in the Carolinas - at least those who send us info about their visual art exhibitions. Also visitors attracted to our website and my blog - Carolina Arts Unleashed also find our links to art galleries, art museums, art centers, individual artists and other visual art related groups - offering other contact opportunities.

We post all info we receive by our deadlines online - every month. For further info go to our website and check out the section "How the Paper Works". It is something a lot of people trying to send us info need to check out first.

Visitors can spend hours, days, and weeks there without scratching the surface of our archived content posted there since 1999. There is no other resource like it covering the visual arts in the Carolinas.

10 Things To Do In An Economic Turndown

Here are a few suggestions for artists and art gallery owners to ponder during this economic downturn - recession, depression - whatever you want to call it.

1. Don't stop advertising and if you never did - start.

2. Don't start slacking off on your hours of operation and consider extending your hours.

3. Go over your client lists and make contact with them.

4. Take advantage of slow times to update and rotate your inventory.

5. Start producing small works in a smaller price range.

6. Keep having exhibitions, but cut back on their expenses.

7. Take advantage of all free publicity - you'll get something for your efforts.

8. If you have a website - make sure the info there is updated and if you don't have one - make one.

9. Start a blog. It's free and will open you up to a new audience.

10. Just don't sit there and do nothing, because nothing is what you'll get.

Over the years I have been witness to a lot of galleries and artists who seem to think all they have to do is open their door for business or produce works of art and the public will do the rest - not so. Usually they don't last long in this highly competitive business.

The artists and galleries that do survive are the hardest working people I know. They don't wait and watch their door or wait for that phone call - they are actively working all opportunities which are available to everyone who is willing to follow them.

This year we have seen a lot of galleries close their doors - don't you be one of them.

NC Pottery Center Reaches Its Fundraising Goal

Since the last issue the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, announced that it had reached it goal of raising $100,000 to keep its doors open. In fact it exceeded that goal by almost $25,000.

If you are a regular reader of Carolina Arts Unleashed, you have been following this amazing story of this community of potters and their efforts to raise this money - in tough times for raising money. If you haven't been following the story - it's all there for the reading. And, there are links to other blogs which follow the action on a weekly and sometimes daily basis.

All artists, arts organizations, and art businesses can take heart in the fact that a lot of people feel the arts are important - more important than another meal out or a new pair of shoes. While people are struggling to keep themselves ahead of the financial wolves - they are still willing to give to a good cause.

I know I take a lot of stock in that notion in that one day we may need people to care that way about us. I hope it's no time soon.


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Carolina Arts is published monthly by Shoestring Publishing Company, a subsidiary of PSMG, Inc. Copyright© 2009 by PSMG, Inc., which published Charleston Arts from July 1987 - Dec. 1994 and South Carolina Arts from Jan. 1995 - Dec. 1996. It also publishes Carolina Arts Online, Copyright© 2009 by PSMG, Inc. All rights reserved by PSMG, Inc. or by the authors of articles. Reproduction or use without written permission is strictly prohibited. Carolina Arts is available throughout North & South Carolina.