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A Long Range Plan for the Arts in South Carolina,

Canvas of the People 2010



Here's a summary of all comments heard from the public:


What is one thing that is working in the arts, either in your community, the state or elsewhere?


  • Collaborations, partnerships, and networking
  • Many opportunities to participate – great accessibility and inclusiveness
  • Good participation
  • Technology and innovation in communications
  • Arts education – all levels – arts ARE basic in many schools (ABC Project)
  • Growth and development new and exciting programs and organizations – even during recession
  • Arts as an asset to economic development
  • There is an expanding, more inclusive definition of arts and arts participation – traditional, YAMS, VSA, immigrant cultures, informal, in churches, etc.
  • Arts as builder of community
  • National recognition of artists and arts event, arts towns in S.C.
  • Artist-driven events/ projects – crawls, guilds, collaborations
  • New arts facilities – catalysts for downtown development/revival
  • Heritage corridors and trails
  • Support from many sectors
  • Good statewide advocacy


What is one of the biggest challenges facing the arts?


  • Making arts relevant to people’s lives/ interests
  • Drawing diverse participation – including age, race, economic, social, cultural
  • Pressures on arts education due to limited resources
  • Urban vs. rural/ geographic challenges
  • Limited capacity in rural areas
  • Lack of access, awareness, inclination to participate
  • Need more support for art as a career choice for young people
  • Difficulty of sustaining a career as an artist in S.C.
  • Securing funding and other support from limited resources
  • Consolidation/ coordination of information on the arts
  • Recognizing and engaging informal, amateur sectors as part of the larger arts “ecosystem”—there is major growth in “do-it-yourself” arts
  • Recognizing and supporting traditional arts – individual, indigenous, immigrant
  • Need to include for-profit arts business in our thinking and programming
  • Image of arts in S.C.  What is our “brand”?  What artists or institutions are recognized outside S.C. and identified with S.C.?
  • Organizational health, sustainability, and capacity
  • Board and staff development
  • Participation
  • Communication/marketing/messages
  • Articulating the value of arts and arts education
  • No unified voice for arts
  • Missed opportunities due to competition, lack of leadership, not being inclusive, lack of planning
  • Lack of public policy to support arts
  • Keeping up with technology – figuring how to harness it.  Is it the competition?
  • So much going on – how do the arts break through (sports, other)?


What is a great opportunity for the arts in our state?


  • Use technology to our advantage
  • Take advantage of existing resources – weather, e.g., long “outdoor” season; potential arts spaces in former mill towns
  • Collaborations/partnerships – sharing resources, maximizing efficiencies, wise use of resources
  • Develop partnerships with Departments of Commerce and PRT, linking arts with other “high value” efforts like business development and tourism
  • Tell the good stories – marketing – enhance SC’s image
  • Communicate public value/make the case – data, assessment
  • SCAC = unified voice
  • Take advantage of research capacity of colleges and universities
  • Explore affiliation with Pew Charitable Trust’s Cultural Data Project
  • Develop the next generation of arts leaders
  • Tap capacity-building resources like SCANPO, experts from commercial sector for arts groups
  • Two arts management programs in SC universities
  • Pre-professional training in the business side of arts for undergrads and grad students
  • Education for current leaders – civic, policy, (advocacy)
  • Teach advocacy to arts orgs and artists – encourage more
  • Make arts relevant to communities
  • Diversity of media for artists – new methods of expression
  • More arts education