Though built only in 2011, the nonprofit Redux Contemporary Art Center’s new 12,000-square-foot facility stays bustling all year, hosting six to eight free exhibitions in two galleries. After taking in the artwork, visitors can attend numerous free events, such as artist talks, film screenings, panels, and concerts. More than 100 classes foster artistic inclinations throughout the year as local qualified instructors help students master disciplines such as painting, drawing, and printmaking.
Redux's galleries stay full thanks in part to its 22 private artist studios, which accommodate emerging and mid-career artists with up to 240 square feet of creative space. Twenty-four-hour studio passes grant access to Redux’s darkroom, print studio, and woodshop. To encourage a sense of community, artists can participate in quarterly critiques, attend visiting-artist lectures, and debate their studio neighbors on artistic controversies such as whether Michelangelo’s David is as good as the earlier one he sculpted from Play-Doh.
Havens Framemakers & Gallery traces its lineage back to 1968, when Robert Havens set up a shop full of handmade, custom-tailored frames. He passed the business to his daughter Betsy in 1985, and she, like a confused track-and-field competitor, handed the torch to current owner Jackie Vazquez. Jackie draws from the Havens family's tradition of expert craftsmanship and her own 20-year stint at the company to surround diplomas, artwork, and keepsakes with a selection of more than 5,000 mouldings collected from a range of vendors. Gilded and hand-carved pieces adorn the gallery’s seven walls, surrounding experienced designers who set to work enshrining 3-D objects in shadowboxes or protecting old photographs and celebrity potato-chip look-alikes within conservation frames.
When the Charleston Museum was founded in 1773, South Carolina was still a British colony. Today, the museum is itself a historical gem, surviving both the American Revolution and Civil War and acquiring an astounding collection of South Carolinian artifacts along the way. Nine permanent exhibits include the Armory, brimming with antique weaponry, and the Lowcountry History Hall, which chronicles the land's metamorphosis from a tribal society into an agricultural empire, telling the story with early trading goods, slave badges, and pottery. Temporary exhibits change regularly, keeping visitors on their toes in the same way changing cell phone numbers every 24 hours does.
The museum extends its history-preserving mission to two area homes: the 19th-century Joseph Manigault House, once home to a wealthy rice plantation owner, and the Heyward-Washington House, where George Washington once stayed during a weeklong visit to the city. Restored rooms, period pieces, and loudly snoring grandfather clocks await guests during scheduled tours.
As a young artist, Lynn was working at a gallery in Atlanta where the framer only showed up to work sporadically. “I started going in and cutting the frames myself,” she says. Soon, Lynn’s deft hands and expertise led her to assume leadership of her own gallery, Accent Framing & Gallery, where her painter’s eye matches matting and metal or wood edging with paintings, photographs, and miscellaneous keepsakes. “What inspires me is how someone can bring in something ordinary and we can make it look so much better,” she says, though she’s also up for tackling the out-of-the ordinary: she once framed a deer’s tail, and she has helped conserve a 200-year-old silk painting as well as a sheepskin Latin document dating back to the 1300s. With a combined three decades of experience, Lynn and her assistant are ready to transform nearly anything into an ensemble fit for the guest room all homeowners keep ready in case the Queen of England drops by.
During her years in edging others’ artwork, Lynn hasn’t neglected her own. Her brush gives life to marshes and feathered wings, and she shares her wisdom with students during art classes on painting with oils and acrylics. The gallery also has plans to help photographers learn to manipulate their camera’s shutter speed, light settings, and advanced pancake-making features.