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The South Carolina Arts Commission

The South Carolina Arts Commission, an autonomous state agency governed by a nine-member Board of Commissioners, was created by an act of the state legislature in 1967. Its mission is to build a thriving arts environment for the benefit of all South Carolinians.

For more than 40 years, the agency has worked to make it possible for every citizen in the state to enjoy and benefit from the arts, including those who do not have a lot of money or live in a large city. The Commission's programs and activities fall into three major domains of public participation and service:

  • Artist Development
  • Arts Education
  • Community Arts Development


The South Carolina Arts Commission has produced nationally recognized initiatives in arts curriculum reform, rural arts development, dance touring and audience development, community design, electronic communications, media arts, and traditional arts infrastructure development—all supported and sustained by a committed, experienced staff of field representatives and arts discipline specialists. In each of its key domains, the agency has expanded its capacity through well-established partnerships with other state agencies and institutions and private groups, extending well beyond the traditional boundaries of the arts community.

The Arts Commission's primary source of funding is state tax dollars appropriated by the S.C. General Assembly. Grants from the federal government through the National Endowment for the Arts comprise the Commission's secondary source of funding. Additional support for Arts Commission projects is provided by private foundations and community sponsors.


With a commitment to excellence across the spectrum of our state's cultures and forms of expression, the South Carolina Arts Commission pursues its public charge to develop a thriving arts environment, which is essential to quality of life, education, and economic vitality for all South Carolinians.