Artist Harrison to speak at ACA

On Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m., the Aiken Center for the Arts will host Harrison in the galleries. He will be available to talk with the public and sign Celebrate Aiken posters.

Harrison’s exhibitions, “Jim Harrison: A Retrospective” and “Glimpses of Aiken,” will be on display in the galleries through May 8. “Glimpses of Aiken” is part of the Celebrate Aiken 175th birthday celebration.

Harrison is well known for his realistic work featuring the Augusta National Golf course, Sage Valley Golf course, natural landscapes and Coca-Cola barns.

Harrison, of Denmark, is being honored in a major exhibition of his life’s work, “Jim Harrison: A Retrospective.” He is known for his passion for preserving a part of America that is beginning to disappear; his paintings of landscapes and seascapes, old buildings and barns bring back special memories. “The Retrospective” demonstrates Harrison’s progression over the years.

The “Glimpses of Aiken” collection reflects Harrison’s own impressions of Aiken. Each painting hones in on an aspect of Aiken which he feels is representative of the city or iconic to the area.

He said “Glimpses of Aiken” is done in what he calls a compositional study style – a loose kind of painting followed by carbon pencil he uses to sometimes draw into the paint or around the paint.

He feels the essence of Aiken includes a lot of trees and shade, flowers and white picket fences. The official Celebrate Aiken poster was created as a part of the exhibition and is available for purchase.

For more information on the event, call the Aiken Center for the Arts at 641-9094.

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Catch ‘Glimpses of Aiken’ at ACA exhibit

Two new exhibitions at the Aiken Center for the Arts (ACA) include the work of local artist Jim Harrison.

“Jim Harrison: Glimpses of Aiken” and “Jim Harrison: A Retrospective” and a collection of 20 new Harrison paintings will open Thursday and run through May 8.

An opening reception will be held on Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the ACA. The reception serves as the kickoff for the second quarter of Celebrate Aiken events based on the theme of arts, education and entertainment.

For more information on the reception, call the ACA at 641-9094 or visit

The beginning

“When I was 14, I went to work for an elderly sign painter. I asked him about a summer job. I began scraping signs and painting backgrounds. He took a liking to me and taught me how to letter for the Denmark Coca-Cola Bottling Co.,” Harrison said.

Harrison had an interest in drawing in high school and took art classes at the University of Carolina where he studied education. After college, Harrison became a teacher and a coach for 11 years. During the summers as a teacher, he began taking art classes in Allendale.

“Gradually, through Ms. Melon’s encouragement and what I had learned, I decided to take a year off and see if I couldn’t make it as an artist,” said Harrison. “That would have been in the summer of 1969. I was an artist, and I didn’t know what to do. I lived in Denmark and had never spoken with an artist who made their living from the sale of their work, but I was a little bit familiar with Greenwich sidewalk shows. I decided to go that fall to the Greenwich sidewalk sale. I got a space and I exhibited on the sidewalk. I sold one painting for $85. Full Story….

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Art show to feature equine, sports theme

Equine and sporting artwork from artists throughout the country will be on display for the Aiken County chapter of the American Red Cross’ Sporting Life Art Show and Sale.

The event will be held at the Aiken Center for the Arts on Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The event is free to attend. The proceeds from the show will benefit the local Red Cross.

Suzanne Jackson, executive director of the Aiken County Red Cross, said the Aiken Center for the Arts and Beresford Gallery in Unionville, Pa., and Saratoga Springs, N.Y., have partnered with the Red Cross to put together the event.

“This show is very important to the Red Cross to support local disaster preparedness,” Jackson said.

Elizabeth Beer with Beresford Gallery of Unionville, Pa., said the two-day show will feature sculptures, bronzes, wall hangings, oil paintings, watercolors, pastels and some photography. There will also be several works from international artists, as well as those who are well established or developing.

“We tried to bring good pieces that are well priced,” she said.

Janet Harkins, the co-chairman of the event, said the show will offer a good representation of Aiken’s equestrian and sporting interests in the works being displayed.

Full details……

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Annual Heart of Aiken show, sale coming Feb. 5-7

The 11th annual Antiques in the Heart of Aiken Show and Sale will be held from Feb. 5-7 at the Aiken Center for the Arts.

The show offers an opportunity to view and purchase fine antique furnishings presented by 23 specialized dealers from across the Southeast, while supporting fine arts activities and programs.

During the three-day antique show, a variety of special events will be held. Aiken has served as the winter home for some of America’s greatest antique collectors of the 20th century with names like Vanderbilt, Whitney and Hitchcock.

There will be a preview party, on Thursday, Feb. 4 from 7 to 9 p.m. The party allows attendees to view and purchase items in advance of the show and is also held at the ACA. Tickets to the preview party are $60 and include a weekend show pass. Tickets can be purchased by calling 641-9094.

Full details….

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Aiken’s birthday subject of exhibition

Celebrate Aiken’s anniversary and submit your artwork to a juried exhibition.

This year the Aiken Center for the Arts is celebrating Aiken by holding their fifth juried exhibition titled “Aiken: Retrospective, 175 years.” The exhibition will be displayed in the main galleries at the art center on Jan. 6-29 with an awards ceremony and opening reception on Jan. 7 at 6 p.m.

“This year the subject matter can include anything pertaining to the rich 175-year history of the City of Aiken. The title of the works of art should provide the relationship to the 175 Year focus of the exhibition,” said Kristin Brown, executive director of the ACA. “The exhibition is open to the Aiken Artist Guild members and other artists. Although an artist’s statement is required, there is no guarantee it will be framed beside the artwork.”

All participants in the contest must be at least 18 years of age. Judging will be conducted by Dorothy Fletcher of the Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art with a strong focus on quality. Cash prizes will be awarded during the awards and opening reception.

All submissions (up to two entries per person) must be framed or gallery wrapped, for sale, ready to hang, two-dimensional works should not exceed 60 inches by 60 inches (three-dimensional work should not exceed 15 inches by 15 inches by 30 inches), be a new piece (created within the last two years) and not previously exhibited at Aiken Center for the Arts.

All entries must be delivered to the ACA for consideration on Saturday, Jan. 2 between 10 a.m. and noon. The artwork will be juried on Jan. 4 and hung.

Artists will be notified if their work is not accepted into the show on Jan. 5 by 5 p.m. and must be picked up on Jan. 6. Artwork accepted into the show must be picked up on Jan. 30 between 10 a.m. and noon.

Completed contracts, identification paperwork and artist’s statements must be completed upon drop-off. For more information, e-mail or call 641-9094.

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Painting workshop offered at art center

A plein-air workshop will paint the town.

Join other artists who take inspiration from their environment for a day of painting in the sunshine under a professional instructor.

Charleston artist Rick Reinert is teaching a one-day painting workshop at the Aiken Center for the Arts (ACA) on Saturday, Nov. 21. The plein-air workshop is open to oil and acrylic artists.

Reinart studied at Western Kentucky University and has won numerous awards for his work. His art hangs in both private and corporate collections around the world. His work will be on exhibit at the center in the main galleries during the month of November. His work shows a passion for expressing light and shadow in nature as well as pure color.

The workshop will last from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and is $112.50 for members and $125 for nonmembers.

Pre-registration is required for the workshop by contacting Cathy Rumble at 641-9094.

Registration may also be completed online at

A limited number of need based scholarships are available for this workshop.

In case of inclement weather, the workshop will be held indoors at the Aiken Center for the Arts.

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Meet the artists of Center’s new exhibition

The Aiken Center for the Arts (ACA) will hold an opening reception for its November exhibitions on Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The new exhibitions include Sandra Etherington Tucker and Dick Dunlap, Rick Reinert and the “T’is the Season Invitational” exhibition by ACA members. The exhibition will be on display from Wednesday through Dec. 30 in the main galleries. During November, the artwork of Marsha Shelburn will be on exhibition in the Aiken Artists’ Guild Gallery.

Tucker, a Hitchcock Woods Foundation trustee, and Dunlap, a retired physician, are showing together for the first time as both friends and teacher/student. Tucker has studied under Dunlap and considers sharing an exhibition with him a high honor. Both are plein air painters and enthusiasts of their local natural environments, which have been the inspiration of their numerous paintings.

As a youth, Tucker began drawing and painting animals. After college where she majored in art, she painted many of the top equine hunter-jumpers. After a hiatus from her art in the 1990s, she returned to focus on landscapes in oils and watercolors. It is at this time she first met and began training under Dunlap.¬† Full Details…

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ACA seeks members to feature artwork

A two-dimensional art show is coming to Aiken and needs local artists to feature.

The Aiken Center for the Arts has launched a call to ACA members for entries into its “T’is the Season.” The exhibit will be featured in the main galleries and/or the Brooks Gallery of the ACA from Wednesday through Dec. 30.

The theme of the artwork is not required to be seasonal; however, the price point should be $300 or less. The artist call is open to all ACA members 18 or older. Two entries are permitted per member, and all artwork must be for sale, framed, ready to hang, not to exceed 24-by-24 inches framed or gallery wrapped and a new piece created within the last two years that has not been previously exhibited at the ACA.

The commission on sales will be 60 percent for the artist and 40 percent for the ACA. Sold artwork may be taken by the purchaser and replaced by the artist with the same size work.

Artwork should be delivered to the ACA on Saturday between 10 a.m. and noon. Required forms and information are available at the center’s front desk or at

Membership is also available at the ACA front desk or by calling 641-9094.

Contact Rachel Johnson at

Want to participate?

What? “T’is the Season” exhibition

When? Drop-off Saturday between 10 a.m. and noon

Where? Aiken Center for the Arts

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Taste of Wine, Art event set for Thursday

The ever popular Taste of Wine and Art at Aiken Center for the Arts is scheduled for Thursday.

Always a sellout, the evening features fine art from local artists, delectable cuisine from local restaurants and caterers plus the opportunity to sample sumptuous offerings of select wines and unique beers. Live music enhances this special¬ evening with friends and tickets are available for $50 at the center.

The event is a fundraiser for general operations of the Aiken Center for the Arts.

This year the Taste of Wine & Art fundraiser will be a top 10, and the artwork created for the print material used by the event is also a top 10.

After a trip to France visiting museums and galleries, Kimberly Guillermo returned to Aiken inspired.

She used that inspiration to paint an acrylic painting that represents the theme and excitement of the Taste of Wine and Art event.

An image of the painting has been used for the invitations and posters.

Guillermo has generously donated the painting to be in the benefit’s silent auction. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in bidding for original art and gifts, mountain, lake and beach vacations, dinner and cocktail parties and all-inclusive golf packages.¬† Full Story…

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Sign up for weekend workshops at Aiken Center for the Arts

This fall the Aiken Center for the Arts will offer weekend workshops in watercolors, fused glass, painting a still life and plein air painting under the guidance of guest teachers.
Michael Pearson, a Beaufort artist, will teach a watercolor workshop called “No Fear” on Friday and Saturday. Color, composition, washes, wet into wet and dry brush are just a few of the techniques she will cover in her “No Fear” watercolor workshop. Tuition is $180 for the two-day workshop.
Charleston glass artist, Mike Heister, will teach students how to create a colorful, fused-glass panel, perfect for your own home or to give as a gift. The class is open to anyone; no previous experience is necessary. The workshop is Saturday, Oct. 17 from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., and tuition is $85.
On Oct. 24, John Radeck of Aiken will teach a still life workshop. This workshop is open to all levels; no drawing ability is needed. The class meets from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., and tuition is $125.
Charleston artist Rick Reinert will teach a plein air workshop on Saturday, Nov. 21 from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. His paintings combine a dramatic use of natural light and shadow with pure colors and brush strokes. The cost for the one-day workshop is $125.
A limited number of need-based scholarships are available to qualified seniors. Arts Center members receive a 10 percent discount on all classes and workshops. For more information or to register, call 641-9094 or visit online at

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