Gallery Openings this Weekend!

Opening this weekend are several highly anticipated gallery exhibits. There are a ton of great shows still up from the first rush in May (Remnants at Robert Lange, Neighbors at 4th Wall) but you’ll definitely want to head to these openings this weekend to mingle with the artists and savor the last weekend before the summer tourists come and take away all of our weekend event parking.

FRIDAY UNTIL 4 : “Toonin’ In” at The Charleston Library Society 


FRIDAY 6-8 : “The Talking Cure” by Melissa Stern at Redux Studios


FRIDAY 6:30-8 : “Rational Exuberance” by Erwin Redl at The Halsey 


SATURDAY 6-9 : “Listing” by Tim Hussey at T.Hussey Studio

Graduation Weekend/Mother’s Day

What with Lowcountry Giving Day, Star Wars Day, Cinco De Mayo, College of Charleston’s Graduation, and now Mother’s Day we’ve all had quite a busy week! We’ve got some GREAT things happening in the arts this weekend to entertain all your out-of-town friends, in-laws, and most importantly, Moms. Click on some of the images below to take you directly to their details page to buy tickets!

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Barnes and Noble Fundraiser

We are so excited to be teaming up with our friends at Barnes and Noble in West Ashley to raise money for the Alliance! Come out tomorrow between 9 and 6 and paint a piano, join in for sing-a-longs, make some art, and buy books; a portion of the proceeds will go to helping us continue to support the arts in Charleston! If you can’t make it, no worries, just use the code 11828720 at ANY Barnes and Noble location or online at checkout and a portion of your purchase will go directly to The Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts.

So go ahead and get that Mother’s Day gift (yes, it’s coming up!), stock up your summer reading library, or just pop in and say hi and join in the fun!


Piccolo Lineup Announced!

This morning, Piccolo Spoleto announced their 2016 program calendar and poster and this year looks particularly exciting! Their Program Guide is gorgeous (shoutout to our friends at Annex Studios!) and packed full of classic Piccolo events, new shows, park openings, and more.

Check out the full lineup here!


Support the Arts on Giving Day!

The Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts is participating again this year in Lowcountry Giving Day! Lowcountry Giving Day is a day-long challenge to the community to show their support for the nonprofits that provide essential services.brand_stamp_3d

The Charleston Arts Alliance is an essential piece of the Lowcountry Arts puzzle. By providing a comprehensive arts calendar, business development workshops, our Lowcountry Arts Fund, and more we are able to support the entire network of nonprofit arts in Charleston.

By supporting the Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts, your donation gets stretched even farther out into the arts community.

Check out our “Arts Matter” video below and see what your donation goes to support!

H O W  T O  G I V E

  • Text: Text ARTSMATTER to 33923
  • Online: Visit (click on schedule donation and search for Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts)
  • Mail: Please make a check out to The Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts and send to 293 East Bay Street Charleston, SC 29401

All donations must be received by May 3, 2016. 


Questions? Email or give us a call at 843.577.5288

Upcoming workshop: Selling Without Selling Out

The Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts is teaming up with 4th Wall for a fantastic workshop on April 27. Selling Without Selling Out is the perfect place for artists looking to enter the business, or those looking to enhance their brand.

Space is limited, so sign up soon! For details, click here.

ECM seeking director of development

Our ECM-5.5x8.5-front-661x1024friends at Engaging Creative Minds are currently taking applications for the open position of Director of Development and Communications. ECM does great work in our community, integrating the arts and education “to inspire the creative and innovative potential of all students to achieve academically and become imaginative, adaptable, and productive adults resulting in stronger communities and an increasingly competitive South Carolina workforce.”

For more information on ECM, visit their website.

Congratulations to the Best of Charleston!

city paperThe Charleston City Paper’s Best of Charleston 2016 is out, and the Alliance is thrilled to see so many members representing the Holy City. Among the winners:

Readers’ picks:

Best Building Dock Street Theatre (third year in a row); Runner-up: Galliard Center

Best FestivalSpoleto Festival USA (second year in a row)

Non-Piccolo or Spoleto Play of 2015 – Grey GardensVillage Repertory Co.; Runner-up: Always … Patsy Cline, Midtown Productions

Cultural Event Spoleto Festival USA (fourth year in a row); Runner-up: Piccolo Spoleto

MuseumGibbes Museum of Art; Runner-up: Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

Best Jazz Band Charleston Jazz Orchestra (fourth year in a row)

Best GalleryThe Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art

Critics’ Picks

Yarn BombEnough Pie project at St. Julian Devine Community Center

Place to Hear Vocal HarmoniesGaillard Center

Best New MuralEnough Pie‘s mural at John. L. Dart Library

Congratulations again to all the winners!

“Bent” at Threshold Repertory

Threshold Repertory Theatre is proud to present Bent, a Pulitzer Prize nominated play, opening March 17th. Directed by Jay Danner, Charleston Theatre’s Best Director of 2015. Set in 1930s, Nazi Germany, Bent peers into the depths of homosexual persecution and spotlights a time we wish we could forget. “Bent,” was a word used across Europe referring to a gay person. Now a show hailed as, “powerful and courageous” by the New York Times. Centered around ill-fated love this captivating performance teaches us how to both give and accept love. 

March 17-April 20
Thursday-Saturday @ 8pm
Last two Sundays @ 3pm
Tickets: Adults $25/Seniors $20/Students/Military $15

Friday Fiver: Deane Valentine Bowers

ImageYour trash is Deane Valentine Bowers’s treasure. Or, at least, it could be soon. Deane is an environmental folk artist, and her creations are crafted from items she finds strewn about. She finds dual inspiration from the beauty of the Lowcountry and her desire to clean up the community.

“Inspiration is always found in the beauty and simplicity of the South Carolina coast. For this reason, I am passionate about being an environmentally conscientious artist and I make it my mission to create eco friendly art. Using mostly discarded, abandoned, and reclaimed materials, my ‘recycled folk art’ celebrates these forgotten things,” she said.

Originally from Richmond, Va., Deane now lives on Seabrook Island. Her mixed media sculptures are colorful and vibrant, and each is a fun exploration to discover how she has repurposed the items she has collected to create her art. And the fact that she’s working to clean up litter is a tremendous added bonus.

“That shattered, busted and cracked piece of metal or wood lying in the streets or on the beach is the focal point of my mixed media, found object sculptures. Items that otherwise would end up in landfills and waterways are given new and important value in my “recycled folk art.” I am constantly amazed at the abundance of materials I find and rescue within just a few city blocks. Great pride is taken in cleaning up my surroundings with the hopes of keeping the coastline beautiful and pristine,” she said.

We chatted with Deane for this week’s Friday Fiver.
When/what was your first work of art done from recycled materials?IMG_7349

My first piece created from found objects and recycled materials was in 2005. It was a very simple “bird shack” made from cardboard, tissue paper, salvaged wood, wire, bottle caps and sticks. I will never part with it because it is a great reminder of how far I have come in working with reclaimed items. Before working with recycled materials, I primarily focused on clay and paint. I hand built ceramic pieces for many years and sold them in many retail locations throughout the Southeast. I was growing tired of working with ceramics and the level of detail and precision it required. You have to be a perfectionist when hand building pieces to ensure they will make it through two kiln firings and not develop hairline cracks or air bubbles. It is also a very expensive medium to work in between the cost of the clay and glazes, not to mention the power needed to fire up the kiln.

On a girls weekend to the beach with a fellow artist and best friend, our beach plans got rained out and we had no back up plan. We both had brought minimal art supplies with us and decided to be creative until the rain stopped, which it never did! We had to be industrious in finding more items to work with. I began walking the beach and the neighborhoods around the beach house looking for things to use. I was amazed and delighted at what I found and how freeing working with rescued materials was. No kiln firings to worry about, no expensive art supplies to purchase and no right or wrong way to create with them. Plus, there was the added satisfaction that I was cleaning up my surroundings and picking up materials that could potentially be harmful. And these things were free, plentiful and right out the front door!IMG_7362

Your art is crafted from scrap items you find, often on the street. What is your most exciting find that you’ve put to use?

Metal scraps are always my most favorite finds. Especially when they are so street worn they have developed holes in places and have a wonderful rusted color to them. There is no telling how long they have been in lying in the streets or where else they have been. I respect and adore these pieces and always put them in a central spot on my found object sculptures. And I am fortunate to find these metal scraps frequently abandoned in the streets or parking lots.

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in creating art from recycled materials?

Go for it and have fun. There is no right or wrong way to work with them. Give them a purpose that is totally different from their original use. Take a walk around the neighborhood and collect whatever you see discarded and go from there. I always clean my materials in very hot water and Simple Green, an Ecofriendly cleaning solution before I get started. Oh, and make sure your tetanus shot is up to date, just in case you have a mishap!

What was the last thing you were listening to on your car radio?

Pandora radio on the Nashville station!Image_2

If you could wave a magic wand over Charleston, what one thing would instantly happen?

One thing I wish would magically happen in Charleston: I would love to see more trash and recycle bins placed throughout the city, especially in the busiest areas of the city and in the city parks. I am disheartened when I see people littering and not taking pride in keeping Charleston beautiful. The amount of rescued materials I collect from the streets, parking lots and beaches of Charleston is staggering. And when I look around, I notice there are no trash or recycling receptacles for people to put their trash in, so no wonder! And if there are trash containers available, they are often overflowing.