Archive for December, 2010

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010


Well, the sagging economy has finally caught up with us. Well, it caught up with us a few years ago, but we just kept hoping things would get better by now and still hope they will in the near future, but for now, we are no longer printing the paper. We didn’t want to say anything about this to our readers before Christmas – we didn’t want to be a piece of coal in anyone’s stocking.

Linda and I have used every resource available to us to keep the paper going, and we want to thank all our loyal advertisers who have stood by us, those who still are, as well as Tri-State Printing, our printer, which has been at our side supporting us for a number of years. But, we just did not get enough ads to pay all the bills – so we are taking the paper online until we can get back to printing the paper – if not in its original form, in some form that best serves the Carolina visual art community and is profitable.

This was a hard decision to make, but we have dug a hole for ourselves and it will take some time to crawl out – which I hope we will with the help of people who are still willing to support our efforts. I’m also looking for a part time job.

This isn’t the first time we have suspended printing of the paper in our 23 year history. After Hurricane Hugo struck the Charleston area in 1989, we just kept on going like nothing had happened but, within a few months we found out differently – it would take almost a year for the art community to recover. When we came back we were stronger than ever. Before the end of the 90′s we had expanded throughout South Carolina and across the border into North Carolina. Eventually we went with a color cover for almost three years before the economy took a dive putting us back – in black & white. So change is always just around the corner.

But, before I move on to the future, I just want to say – if there are any individuals, groups, or angels out there who would like to help us out of that hole – please get in touch with us.

So what about the future?

Well, right off during the month of January there are going to be a lot of folks in shock when they go looking for a copy of Carolina Arts where they used to find them. For some, they will think – well, that’s the end ofCarolina Arts. A few might even think – good riddance. We’re hoping most of these folks will go to our website – where they have found our online version of the paper for over 11 years to see what’s up.

Hopefully the word will spread that Carolina Arts is not dead, but living online. Hopefully readers, artists, gallery owners, arts organizations, art museums, and all sorts of followers will be talking about our new and improved online version of the paper and reading it.

We know there are a lot of people who like to hold something in their hands when they read it, and there is a whole new generation of people who read everything in an electronic format, whether on their desktop computers, laptop computers, iPads, and smart phones. We can’t do anything about people’s habits, but online publishing has its benefits.

First off, the paper we will be presenting will be in color. It will be in a PDF format which can be enlarged to the viewer’s liking. Ads will be able to be in color, color images will be offered in some articles, from time to time we’ll add some color graphics. Because space is not as limited in the electronic form we will now be able to add reception and lecture dates back into articles and add color images into the gallery listings to break up those massive pages of text. Articles about exhibits will be featured from throughout the Carolinas – even areas not included in the past in the printed paper.

Of course with an electronic version comes reduced ad rates – so some of our regular advertisers will be able to enlarge their ads and still save money, people who have thought about advertising, but never could fit it into their budgets, probably can now, and we’ll gain new advertisers from other areas of the Carolinas. One of our goals has always been to offer an informative visual arts paper people could afford to support. Info about advertising will be posted on our website at this link (

Now, some people have asked, how will I know people are reading my articles and seeing my ads when the paper is in an electronic form only? How many people will see the paper? How big a list do you have to e-mail people the paper? Can my ad be linked so if someone clicks it they will go to my website or blog? Can I get a report on how many people see my ad or the page my ad and article are on each month? These are all questions we don’t have the answers to (yet) and I don’t think we could have answered all of them when we were in print.

We used to print 10,000 copies of the paper and distribute most in good months and about 90% in bad months (cold and hot months). It’s impossible for any publication beyond those numbers to tell you how many people read it and how many see your ad. Surveys just guess at it.

This is all new and it will take time to grow. You could run into people six months from now who didn’t even know we had stopped printing. I’ve run into to people who had articles printed in the paper who didn’t know it when talking to me and they had a vested interest in the paper, so there is a lot of mystery involved, but with electronic media – there are ways of getting some info.

We get over 300,000 hits on our website every month – sometimes 400,000. But these are people who might have spent just a few seconds on our site. We know over 50,000 viewers spend time on the site reading every month and those numbers are growing all the time, some months it jumps to 60,000. I wish I knew what got their attention in those months so I could keep up whatever attracted so many new viewers. And, these folks are spread all over the world.

I can tell you that some of our most popular pages on our site are Carolina Arts Unleashed (one of our blogs), the gallery listings (all four sets), articles about exhibits, past juried exhibit results, and a few links to articles about Winston O. Link, an amazing photographer who did nighttime photos of old trains. We offered that info in 1999, but people still like to look at the images. But we have over 22,000 elements on our website of 11 years. That’s articles, graphics and images.

What Can You Do To Help?

What we are going to need is for our readers to let our supporters know you really appreciate them supporting Carolina Arts. These are the folks who make it happen. Without their support there would be no Carolina Arts – in any form. You need to visit these supporters and tell them. You need to send them e-mails. You need to click any links we have to their sites. You just need to let them know in any way you can. It’s really important that they get that message. And, the folks who really have to do this is those who get coverage in Carolina Arts, but do not contribute financially in any way. They really better let our supporters know – their continued coverage depends on it.

I don’t know what else I can tell you, but we think the paper is going to look good, we’re going to have a lot of info in it, and we hope you’ll make a New Year’s Resolution to be a supporter and reader of Carolina Arts in 2011.

The Death of the Fruitcake

Saturday, December 25th, 2010


What ever happened to the Christmas fruitcake? If you’re a certain age – like me – born in the 40’s, 50’s or even early 60’s, you remember the Christmas fruitcake. You either liked it or hated it, but it was always there – sometimes well into Easter. I kind of liked it in moderation – as too much fruitcake was a place you never want to go. But, these days – where’s the fruitcake. I haven’t had any in years and I kind of miss it.

Now there was two kinds of fruitcakes – plain and spiked. As a child, we never got access to the spiked kind. If we did, we may have grown to like fruitcake more. But, I can understand why our parents kept it away from us – sugar and booze – a bad combination for already hyper children during the Christmas season.

The last time I had some really good fruitcake was from the wife of an old photographer friend who if you were lucky – you got on her Christmas list for fruitcake. That was almost 20 years ago. It was the best. It wasn’t the kind that you could use to change tires on your car. It was wonderful. In fact, Linda and I thought of it as happy cake – as a few portions would soon put a grin on your face. Now, I don’t even know anyone who goes to the trouble to make good fruitcake – because for years fruitcake was the subject of many a Christmas time joke. People complained about Christmas fruitcakes so much – those who use to make them gave it up. And now we have a generation or two of young folks who know nothing of fruitcake. Too bad.

I miss fruitcake!

A Trip to the Gibbes, Nina Liu and Friends, and Cone 10 Studios in Charleston, SC

Sunday, December 19th, 2010


On another bone chilling, rainy Saturday, I headed south toward Charleston, SC, this time bypassing North Charleston to head to one of the Gibbes Museum of Art’s free Community Days. Thank you, Junior League of Charleston.

You ask – don’t I have a membership at the Gibbes, or for that matter a membership at every art museum in the Carolinas? You might also ask – as a member of the press, can’t I get into every art museum in the Carolinas? – don’t they want you there? – don’t they want all the members of the media to come to their museums? Well, the answers are yes and no. You figure it out.

No, first off, getting something for free is one of the greatest feelings in the world. Most art museums in the Carolinas offer some free admission days. I like to see who comes on those days besides me. Secondly, yes, I probably could get into any art museum free, but that takes scheduling, which is hard to work out at times and I didn’t know I could make this trip until Friday evening. Thirdly, I think in our 23 years of covering the visual arts in the Carolinas I’ve earned the cost of any level of membership there is and some. And, finally, I just don’t get to go that much.

Although many people still think as an editor/publisher of an arts newspaper I get to see everything – I don’t, there is not enough time in the world. I see more than most people, but a lot less than many. But, I think lots of other folks should have an art museum membership card on them at all times. In fact they should never leave home without it.


I arrived at the Gibbes Museum of Art, located at 135 Meeting Street in downtown Charleston, just as the Blessed Sacrament School Children’s Choir was finishing and little girls were “running” everywhere keeping the security people on their toes – no running! Beside parents trying to gather their children together there seemed to be lots of couples of all ages in the galleries. There must be something about a rainy day that attracts couples to art museums. Before long the children were doing art activities and that left the art galleries to the parents, the couples and me.


In the Main Gallery was the exhibit, Art of Our Time: Selections from the Ulrich Museum of Art, which was a collection of familiar names and not-so-familiar names. On one wall was a group of what I would call the who’s who of the modern art world – Alexander Calder, Andy Warhol, Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell, Joan Miró, and Jacob Lawrence. Looking at the works I wondered what some of these parents might be thinking. A lot of the works looked like the kind of stuff you might see in a children’s art class with the exception of the Warhol. They may have works at home – on the refrigerator – that look a lot like these works. But, then I remembered something William Halsey once said in his later years (80′s) – that he was just getting back to painting child-like with no inhibitions.

Speaking of William Halsey, the Gibbes had a nice display of his works in an area which has been used as a sort of hands-on or education area. It’s now being used as an Artist Spotlight area. A lot of folks in Charleston need to be educated about who William Halsey was and the work he left us. One of the works in this display was once featured on a color cover of Carolina Arts.


On the other side of the main room were works that looked more like art you see being made today. My favorite work of the day was a set of nine large photographs hung 3 x 3 entitled, Family Tree, by Zhang Huan, a Chinese artist who did a self portrait where he had three traditional Chinese calligraphers make kanji characters on his face – all in one day. They told traditional stories – until his face was totally covered in ink – totally.

After the children’s choir cleared out of the area where they sang, I was able to view the exhibit, J. Henry Fair: Industrial Scars. This exhibit was depressing. It’s a photographic exhibit with bird’s eye views of industrial waste areas around the country and views of the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. They are of areas we would never see driving by these industrial sites. They keep this stuff hidden. Although the images themselves are interesting and often beautiful due to the unusual colors and patterns, they are disturbing and shocking when you discover that one you are looking at is in your own backyard. I mean it – one was about 20 miles from our house.

There is a coal burning power plant right across the lake from us and one of the images was of its ash spillway. It was ugly and frightening to think that this stuff was so close to the lake, but at the same time, I sure was glad that power plant had enough power to keep our home warm during the below-freezing temps of just a week ago. It’s like no one would eat meat if they visited a slaughter house every week. There are trade-offs for everything we do, but you would hope that one day we’d learn to do things better. That’s why this country needs to develop more wind and solar power – and fast.

On that note – I was out of there.

Next, I went over to Nina Liu and Friends gallery at 24 State Street. Nina Liu is celebrating her 25th anniversary in Charleston with an exhibit of her own work. They sent a press release about her exhibit which will be in our Jan. 2011 issue of Carolina Arts, but they didn’t have any images, so I wanted to see if I could get some to use.

Usually a rainy day is not the best day to do any photography, but I knew if she had a spot outside that wasn’t being rained on, the light would be nice and even – at least that was the theory. After the shooting, we talked about what’s going on in Charleston and how fast 25 years seemed to go by. She came to Charleston two years before Linda and I started our first arts newspaper. In fact, her gallery and Lowcountry Artists Ltd. in Charleston are our oldest continuous running advertisers – both since May 1988.


While I was at Nina Liu’s a man came in looking for a special kind of pottery cup, which Liu didn’t have. We both suggested he check out Charleston Crafts, just around the corner and Cone 10 Studios at 1080B Morrison Drive. But, while he was there he found a small sculpture by Aggie Zed that he liked and purchased it. Not bad for a cold rainy day in Charleston – in this economy.

On my way out of Charleston I thought I might stop by Cone 10 Studios myself. They moved during the summer from Meeting Street to this new location – twice the size of their old gallery/studio. I had not been to the new location since they opened – except very early in the morning – long before they would be open – dropping off papers, so while I was going that way – in the middle of the day – I stopped.



Their new gallery space is very airy. Good thing too – I got my best photos of the day there. I talked with Betsey Carter and got the 10 cent tour around all the artist’s stations and some of the common areas. I’m always amazed how much space and equipment it takes beyond a spinning wheel, which is all most people think it takes to make pottery. Like most forms of art, if people knew how much equipment and process is involved in making art – they would appreciate it more.


The other nice thing about their new location is that they have lots of parking spaces. When they were on Meeting Street, you might get lucky if you could find an open space within blocks from their door. Carter says they’re calling this part of Charleston NoMo – North Morrison. A few other art related busineses are also located in the area.

If you haven’t been there yet – go by and see them. Besides being a working studio for over 20 artists, it’s a gallery and a learning center. They hold pottery classes. While I was there a few excited students came by to see works that had just come out of the kiln. What a wonderful feeling to see something you made for the first time – and it looked like work you could have found in the gallery. I’m sure they all don’t turn out that way, but what I saw looked very respectable.

Well, as with all my adventures – I needed to get back home. We have a Jan. 2011 issue to get ready.

Carolina Arts Enters the World of Facebook

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

Well, like all things it had to happen eventually – we now have a page on Facebook. And, we invite all our readers out there to Like us. I always hoped you did anyway, but now this is a way of showing it – just like we all want you to feel the same about all our supporters who help make Carolina Arts, Carolina Arts Unleashed and Carolina Arts News possible.

This is all new stuff for us and it will take us some time to get everything just right, but hang in there with us, eventually we may even be Tweeting soon. After all, spreading information about what’s going on in the visual art community in the Carolinas is what we’re all about.

If you have a Facebook account – type Carolina Arts in the search field and pick the one with this image
(the one and only true Carolina Arts Facebook page).

Then Like us. Then see what we’ve posted there.

Families are Focus of Mint Museum’s New Educational Programming in Charlotte, NC

Thursday, December 16th, 2010


Here’s some news for families looking for more artistic activities for their children next year. If you want to find this news later – just remember you can now search this blog. Just type in the word Families.

New programs and amenities geared towards younger visitors are making the Mint Museums in Charlotte, NC, a welcoming destination for children and families this winter.

The Lewis Family Gallery at the Mint Museum Uptown provides a creative outlet for children to play, explore, and learn about the Museum’s collections. Featuring actual works of art, the Family Gallery offers five activity zones and a soft-play Tot Spot area for crawlers and new walkers. Visitors can pose for pictures behind a wall of ornate gold frames in the Hall of Portraits or step into a Romare Bearden-inspired collage in the interactive Memories of Mecklenburg play house. Two art-making stations, Draw the Line and Imagination Station, allow children to experiment with mark-making and create artwork to take home, while the Inspired By station offers puzzle challenges for young minds. Geared towards children up to age 12, the Lewis Family Gallery is open during regular museum hours and is free with admission.

Beginning in January, families will be able to borrow an Art Pack at the “Mint for Families” station just outside the Lewis Family Gallery for an in-depth investigation of artwork in the permanent collection galleries. Art Packs are backpacks stocked with sketching, writing, and touchable activities and games geared toward school-aged children. Also available at the family station are ARTventure scavenger hunt postcards, which encourage children and their parents to explore a new theme in the Mint Museum Uptown each month. Both of these projects are supported, in part, by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Mint will also launch two new education series for families in 2011: Art Studio Saturdays and Sunday Fun Days. In Art Studio Saturdays, children and adults can create art projects as a family using materials and themes provided by the Museum. This drop-in series will be held monthly on second Saturdays from 10am to 3pm, at the Mint Museum Randolph and is free with museum admission. The Art Studio Saturdays winter/spring schedule is:

Jan. 8, 2011 – Painting Party!: Experiment with a variety of paints and materials to create a work of art, and see a masterpiece by Impressionist Mary Cassatt in the galleries.

Feb. 12 – Dragon Puppets: Use crayon resist, markers, and embellishments to construct a dramatic dragon puppet to celebrate Chinese New Year.

Mar. 12 – Native American Pottery: Explore ancient and contemporary pottery of the Americas and use hand-building techniques to construct a clay animal or vessel to take home.

Apr. 9 – Springtime Collage Cards: Celebrate the season by cutting, tearing, and layering hand-made papers to create lovely collaged notecards, and visit the galleries to see how artists have depicted seasons throughout the ages.

May 14 – Mexican Tin Art: Draw inspiration from the bold, contemporary Maya textiles on display, and design and emboss a colorful, metal folk art plate.

Debuting in January at the Mint Museum Uptown are Sunday Fun Days. This monthly, drop-in series features family-friendly activities, including performances, artist demonstrations, craft projects, family tours, and more. Sunday Fun Days will be held monthly on third Sundays from 1 to 4pm, at the Mint Museum Uptown and are free with museum admission. The Sunday Fun Days winter/spring schedule is:

Jan. 16 – Glass Magic: Go on a family tour to view glass sculptures, make a sparkling sun catcher, and explore color and light at the Colorama Booth with Discovery Place ScienceReach specialists.

Feb. 20 – Art, Supersized: Add your touch to a supersized mural, search the galleries for large paintings, and play “giant games” with your family members.

Mar. 20 – Crafting Critters: Watch artist David Edgar morph recycled plastic into incredible sea creatures, take a guided “safari” in the galleries, and craft a critter to take home.

Apr. 17 – Earth Day Art: See a special “green” performance by the North Carolina Dance Theatre, watch a pottery demonstration by artist Greg Scott, craft a recycled creation, and go on an Earth Day family tour.

May 15 – Wonders of Wood: Watch the wood shavings fly as artist Charles Farrar demonstrates the art of woodturning on a lathe, then go on a wood-themed scavenger hunt in the galleries and do a simple wood project.

All 2010-2011 education programs for children, youth, and teachers are supported in part by a generous grant from The Hearst Foundation, Inc.

For further information call the Museum at 704/337-2000 or visit (

A Trip to the First Park Circle Studio and House Tour in North Charleston, SC

Sunday, December 12th, 2010


Sometime before Thanksgiving I received an e-mail from Madeline Dukes about the Park Circle Studio and House Tour in North Charleston, SC, sponsored by the North Charleston Artist Guild. My first question was – since when has there been a North Charleston Artist Guild? I was glad to find out that the group was newly formed and this was one of their first events.

I posted a blog about it that same day at Carolina Arts News, but as usual for us, by the time that date would have come around – tons of other events would have come across our radar and have been posted on our various blogs and catalogued into our system for future publishing. Luckily, we received a timely e-mail from Peter Scala’s wife Patricia Buckley, a great supporter of Carolina Arts, about the event and we decided to go.

The only problem was that we had already scheduled to have a yard sale that day (Dec. 11, 2010) and in the evening, dinner with a neighbor, so we had a short window of opportunity to run down to North Charleston and get back home before 6pm. The yard sale ended at 2pm. The Tour took place from 2-6pm. It was a good thing that North Charleston is not that far away from us.

So like with all tours or art walks we had to make a decision of where we would try to go – knowing that I would probably end up talking too much at someplace – or everywhere – blowing our plan up in our faces.

Peter Scala

I had never met Peter Scala, so that was number one on the list. I’ve met his wife, Pat, once at the SC Arts Commission Canvas of the People held at North Charleston City Hall – almost a year ago. She’s very active in the North Charleston arts community.

Meeting Pat was about all I can say attending that meeting was worth. Anybody see or hear any results of the great Canvas of the People?

Amelia “Mimi” Whaley

We also wanted to make sure we dropped in on Amelia “Mimi” Whaley, a fellow blogger and artist we have known for years. She keeps people informed about daily activities at the Outdoor Art Show in Marion Square each Piccolo Spoleto Festival.

So on a day that was supposed to be 60 degrees and partly sunny, we did our yard sale in the middle of a constant rain and a bone chilling 40-50 degree weather, packed it in around 1:30pm, and then cleaned up and headed to North Charleston for a cultural event. Not Charleston. As far as I know there wasn’t much going on – as far as the visual arts goes – in Charleston.

You see, North Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, Summerville, Berkeley County – they are all ugly step-children in most people’s eyes in the Charleston area. Not mine. For most others in this area, their first thought is that nothing good could ever be going on there. And, that’s too bad, as with that attitude – they often miss out by never leaving the boundaries of Charleston – unless they are going to New York City.

Don’t get me wrong – Charleston is a great cultural city. More goes on there than in most cities twice its size, but it’s not the end-all to culture. Other good events are being offered by its neighbors. People just need to venture out of their cultural safety zones to see.

OK – stepping off the soap box. We downloaded the map offered on the North Charleston Artist Guild’s website ( and headed to Park Circle, an area I drive through at least a couple times a month. And I can tell you – the area they called Old North Charleston isn’t your parents version of old North Charleston. The Navy Base has been gone for many a year now and the joints the sailors and shipyard workers used to hang out in are gone. The area is now known as Olde North Charleston Village and it offers neighborhood pubs and bistros, a film society, a theatre group and much more. East Montague Avenue is the focal point of Park Circle.

First stop, Peter Scala’s home and studio, just off East Montague Ave., near the shopping and dining district. We were greeted by Pat Buckley (who is not the artist – a little joke), and everyone visiting got to take home a free drawing by Peter Scala, who starts out every day with a drawing session. In fact, when Peter Scala pays his bill each month (for his ad in Carolina Arts) he sends it wrapped in a drawing, instead of a plain sheet of paper like most people do. So every month we get a little art and money in the mail from him.


Scala’s work is not typical to the Charleston area. Back in June of 2009 in a blog posting I did about an exhibit he had at the Charleston County Public Library I referenced his work as – a taste of old world modern art. You can read that posting at this link.


We finally got to meet Peter and a few other nice folks doing the tour and see his workspace. There was a steady flow of people coming and going – not like the hoards that do the art walks in Charleston, but during this event you could actually talk to an artist, look at their work, see the space that they work in and not joust for food with the hoard. But like always, the clock was ticking and we had to move on.

“Where To?” by Peter Scala

We said good-bye to Pat on the way out as she was greeting more visitors. I wish we had more time to talk about numerous subjects.



Next stop was the Mixson project, just off of East Montague Ave., on the other side of Park Circle. The folks at Mixson provided several artists, who didn’t have studios in the Park Circle area, including Amelia Whaley, space to show off works in a few of their model homes. This was a good partnership deal for Mixson and the North Charleston Artist Guild. It showed off the Mixson project and individual homes and the participating artists’ work at the same time. Here, you had the feeling of a neighborhood block party – music and the smell of good food was in the air.

We soon found Amelia Whaley’s location and that of J. Carol Gardener, who was partnered up with her. I made the mistake of asking Mimi if she was going to blog about this event and the conversation turned quickly to talk of computers and problems with computers. She had recently left the Dark Side and come over to the Force when she purchased her first Apple computer. Apple computers don’t have many problems.

Apple computers is one of our favorite subjects. We’ve had one since 1983. Of course we also touched on the recent problems we’re having with the robots at Facebook. I made a mistake and apparently Facebook has no humans you can send an e-mail to or talk to. But that’s another blog I hope I never have to write.

“Landscape Dream” by Amelia Whaley

We did eventually view the art, but before you know it that darn clock was calling. On the way out we had a short chat with David Springer who had a great display of metal sculpture outside. The way his works looked outside the complex, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Mixson folks purchased one before he packed them away after the event.

Work by David Springer

I also want to mention that there was a group of nice young – I don’t know if you would call them docents or tour guides who had volunteered to help the North Charleston Artist Guild during this event. That’s something the folks in Charleston could learn from – some of those galleries could use some help when it comes to crowd control.

If we had more time we would have loved to visit the studios of Arianne King-Comer and Madeline Dukes, or visited the Mixson sites where Pedro Rodriguez and Keller Lee were located. Or for that matter, discover the other artists who we did not know of, but I’m betting this Studio and House Tour will become an annual event if not more often. And, it’s a good reason to look forward to the next offering of the North Charleston Artist Guild.

The North Charleston Artist Guild is an arts organization hosted by The Olde North Charleston Merchants Association operating out of the Old Village of Park Circle North Charleston.

The purposes of the guild are to 1.) network local artists, 2.) promote their works through alliance with Park Circle area businesses, 3.) advance artist communities in the area, 4.) organize and promote events in all art disciplines, 5.) educate the public about the arts.

If you’d like to join them visit (

Some Info for Artists at Carolina Arts News

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

We just posted some info for artists from several different sources atCarolina Arts News. Info you may want to know about like:


If you’re a visual artist or a group of visual artists (no geographic requirements) and you would like an exhibit at one of the gallery spaces controlled by the Caldwell Arts Council in Lenoir, NC, in 2012 – they are now accepting proposals.


If you’re a visual artist living anywhere in NC, you can apply for the Regional Emerging Artist-in-Residence (July 2011 – January 2012) at Artspace in Raleigh, NC.


If you’re an artist living in Randolph County, NC, and you might like some money to help you do a certain project – you might be able to get a Regional Artists Grant from the Randolph Arts Guild in Asheboro, NC.

Go to Carolina Arts News at ( and see more details and links for even more details.

A Day Without Art in Salisbury, NC

Monday, December 6th, 2010


Delivering our Dec. 2010 issue of Carolina Arts was a little strange, including delivering one night when the overnight low temp was 70 degrees and then the low the next evening was 27 degrees. But when I reached Salisbury, NC, and started my route of deliveries to galleries and other stops, I really saw something unusual.

It started when I passed by a sculpture by Gretchen Lothrop, which was part of the 2010 Salisbury Sculpture Show, which is still on view through Dec. 31, 2010. As I drove past it – I could see some kind of a dark fabric draped over part of it – it reminded me the way crosses are draped during Easter. At least I thought it was a dark fabric, but it was also very dark outside – it was about 5:30am Thursday morning.

When I got to the Rowan County Library on Fisher Street I found out what was going on with Lothrop’s sculpture. The four sculptures near the library were covered by dark black shrouds and a sign announcing that this artwork was being covered in observance of World AIDS Day – A Day Without Art (Dec. 1st annually).

I knew all about Dec. 1, but this was the first time I’ve really seen an effective demonstration of the concept of a day without art – which is hard to pull off as art is such a part of our everyday lives – even if most people don’t know it. I tip my hat to the Rowan County AIDS Task Force and the artists, arts organizations and even art galleries who worked with them to get this message across.

A day later and I would have missed it all.

The Burning by Paris Alexander from Salisbury Post

Here’s a little bit of what was published in the Salisbury Post:

Local advocates are putting art under a shroud to cast a spotlight on AIDS.

For World AIDS Day today, the Rowan County AIDS Task Force is working to acknowledge those living with AIDS in Rowan County. The task force has borrowed an idea pioneered in the country’s major cities.

Hundreds of artists, designers and entertainers died of AIDS in America’s cities in the late 1980s. As a memorial, many nationally prominent museums and galleries shrouded art works on World AIDS Day for a Day Without Art.

With the cooperation of the city of Salisbury, the AIDS Task Force is planning its own statement. Art objects included in the 2010 Salisbury Sculpture Show will be shrouded — covered with black cloth — today. So will pottery, paintings and art work in or around various shops and art galleries in Salisbury. Twenty-five Blue Masque students at Catawba College will wear black Wednesday and AIDS awareness signs. The largest work of art to be shrouded will be the massive Livingstone College Bear sculpture on the school’s quadrangle.

Shrouds were placed over the works Tuesday and will be removed Thursday.

You can read the whole article in the Salisbury Post at this link.

When I got to Pottery 101 on So. Main Street I could see in through the windows that some of the displays of pottery were also covered with black shrouds. This was possible as Pottery 101 leaves lights on during the night – a good form of advertising during closed hours. You never know who will be walking or driving by at any hour.

Although for me – the whole city was under a sort of dark shroud – the demonstration was really effective and I’m sure it was just as effective for folks in Salisbury who were used to seeing a lot of art around their city.

As I think I’ve said before – they take their art seriously in Salisbury, NC.

Adding To The Carolina Clay Resource Directory

Friday, December 3rd, 2010


Although the Thanksgiving – Black Friday weekend is probably not the best time to launch a new venture, I’m happy to report that at least a few potters made it through the lists and sent us additions of individual potters and galleries showing pottery.

Since then we’ve been adding them as soon as we received most of them. Hopefully as people recover from each blockbuster weekend, presented until Christmas, more people will check the site out and send us more info to add. This is a process that we expect to be ongoing. And once the holidays are over – people will have lots of time to look at websites – all winter long.

For potters, they should also check out the active ad link for Bulldog Pottery in Seagrove, NC, to see how you can extend your presence in such a crowded field. And, we’ve just scratch the surface as far as listing Carolina potters, clay sculptors, and other creative artists using clay. You know what the say about squeaky wheels. Contact us about becoming one of them.

Just go on over to Carolina Arts and click on the Carolina Clay Resource Directory link and explore.