The city of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs presents South Arts’ 2021 Southern Prize and State Fellowships Exhibition, on view July 15 – August 28, 2022 at City Gallery.
South Arts’ 2021 Southern Prize and State Fellowships Exhibition is a touring exhibition of the award and fellowship recipients. South Arts, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is a nonprofit regional arts organization with a mission to empower artists, organizations and committees as well as increase access to arts and culture. Since 2017, its Southern Prize & State Fellowship Program has recognized and awarded direct financial support to some of the top contemporary artists in the region. A State Fellowship is awarded to an artist from the nine Southern states (Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida and South Carolina), and a second jury selects the Southern Prize finalists and winner.
This is the third year that South Arts has established a touring exhibition for the program, and the late Wim Roefs, acted as curator for this year’s exhibition. A noted curator and visual arts professional in South Carolina, Roefs was co-founder and board member of 701 Center for Contemporary Art and owner of if ART Gallery, both in Columbia, South Carolina.
The 2021 South Arts State Fellowship cohort includes: Tameca Cole, Alabama; Raheleh Filsoofi, Tennessee; Joyce Garner, Kentucky; Myra Greene, Georgia; Jewel Ham, North Carolina; Ming Ying Hong, Mississippi; Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick, Louisiana; Marielle Plaisir, Florida; and Fletcher Williams III, South Carolina. Marielle Plaisir was the winner of the 2021 Southern Prize. For more information on these artists, including their biographies and artist’s statements, please visit https://citygalleryatwaterfrontpark.com/coming-soon/.
The 2022 cohort of State Fellows has been announced, and the Southern Prize for 2022 will be announced on September 1, 2022 at the Bo Bartlett Center of Columbus State University. For more information on South Arts and the State Fellows program, please visit www.southarts.org. Southern Prize & State Fellowships | South Arts
Words from Wim Roefs:
Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick speak of “dignity, beauty, and strength.” Tameca Cole aims for “a better future,” and Marielle Plaisir thinks of her “imagined ideal of utopia without oppression.” Raheleh Filsoofi’s challenge of how we view “others” and Ming Ying Hong’s of stereotypes related to the body imply hope. Joyce Garner’s “allegory of people coming together around a table” does, too, as does the confidence that exudes from Myra Greene’s rhapsody on the “beautiful blend of complex information” that is the color brown. Fletcher Williams III focuses on “our desire to establish a home and self” within the South, while Jewel Ham sees her reclaiming of African Americans’ “time, spaces and histories” as an “act of resistance…”
As in previous years, few of this year’s Southern Prize artists are concerned with specific “Southern” issues. Only Williams explicitly engages the American South. Cole’s starting points are experiences in her native South, as are those of Calhoun and McCormick. But the issues they address aren’t strictly regional, which is true as well for native Southerners Ham and Garner. The other artists are not native Southerners. As a group, the 2021 South Arts Fellows bring multiple identities to the table, individually and combined.
Please visit our website at www.charleston-sc.gov/citygallery or call the gallery at (843) 958-6484 during normal business hours for additional information regarding Covid concerns.
About City Gallery:
City Gallery, located at Joe Riley Waterfront Park, is owned by the city of Charleston and operated by the city of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs, presenting an annual program of exhibitions and events featuring the finest contemporary art from local, regional, national and international artists, with a focus on the Lowcountry. City Gallery is located at 34 Prioleau St. in downtown Charleston, and gallery hours of operation are noon until 5 p.m., Thursday through Sunday. For more information and holiday closures, visit www.charleston-sc.gov/citygallery or call 843-958-6484.