The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts invites the public to view the first exhibition in a new multi-year series. This series, held in the main floor Bunzl Gallery, will highlight curated works by artists in a specific state each year. Work displayed in this year’s High Art of the Lowcountry exhibition, curated by Shelley Burian, PhD, showcases art from the Lowcountry region of South Carolina, many of which are on loan from private collections. High Art of the Lowcountry will be displayed through September 15, 2019.
The coastal regions of South Carolina and the surrounding estuaries and islands, referred to as the Lowcountry, have been a source of inspiration for a diverse range of artists for over two hundred years. The prominence of the city of Charleston as a cosmopolitan and multicultural center during the Antebellum Period led to the creation of unique artistic traditions, including the Gullah basketry techniques brought from Africa by slaves and modified to use the native Lowcountry sweetgrass. After the region recovered from the devastation of the war, artists were again drawn to its unique natural beauty, including a large number of women, some of whom gained national recognition for their work. Today, artists from the region working in a wide range of media continue to represent the Lowcountry and its people.
This exhibition aims to present an overview of this rich and complex history of artistic production from the Colonial Period to the present day. Rare 18th century artworks (including one of the earliest embroidered samplers from the Lowcountry and pieces by Charleston silversmiths) together with paintings and prints by prominent artists of the Charleston Renaissance in the early 20th century such as Alice Ravenel Huger Smith, Elizabeth O’Neill Verner, and Anna Heyward Taylor, and finally, contemporary works by nationally known artists including West Fraser, Jack Leigh, and Philip Simmons are presented thematically in order to present visitors with the opportunity to learn about the continuities which link Lowcountry artistic practice through the centuries.
The Bascom offers free admission to all exhibition gallery spaces. Guests may enjoy these exhibits during gallery hours, Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday noon – 5 p.m. The Bascom would like to thank all those that made this exhibition possible, including its 2019 Year-Round Exhibition Sponsors: Bel Canto, Cathy and Bob Fisher, Delta Air Lines, Ginger Kennedy and Kevin Naylor, Virginia and Mike Campbell, Chaparral Foundation, and Bobbie and Jon Golden, as well as exhibit sponsors Gail and Tim Hughes, Nina and Frank Burke, Martha and Michael Dupuis, and The Alma Lee, Norman and Cary Saurage Fund.
The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts is located in Highlands, North Carolina. The Bascom focuses on providing excellent free admission exhibitions, a robust education department with art classes for people of all ages, and an expansive outreach program consisting of numerous partnerships with local nonprofit organizations. For more information about The Bascom, please click HERE or call 828.526.4949. Visit us in person at 323 Franklin Road Highlands, NC 28741. The Bascom is just across the covered bridge.
Pictured at the top of the article is Philip Simmons (1912-2009), Egret, Wrought iron, 2000, Collection of George and Mary Sue McDaniel.