South Carolina Arts Commission

Creativity + Public Health

Crossing sectors:

Arts and culture bolster public health messaging.

Finding new ways to strategically use arts and culture in community development, The Art of Community: Rural SC initiative of the S.C. Arts Commission found a way to practice what it preaches with the creation of a series of posters that began in March 2020, at the onset of the pandemic. The SCAC collaborated with South Carolina artist Amiri Farris to create a series of five posters that were designed and released over time, including the most recent poster with the theme “Plan Your Vaccine.”

The artwork and the messaging, offered in both English and Spanish versions, illustrate the nexus of public health, safety and community wellbeing.

The poster series/La serie de carteles

Please feel free to print these posters for use in your workplaces, schools, and communities. Spanish versions are available thanks to the SCAC’s partnership with Art Pot Multicultural Center in Berkeley County and its artistic director Maribel Acosta.

Addressing challenges, celebrating assets

The Art of Community: Rural SC initiative’s purpose is to address community challenges and celebrate local assets; and to use creativity to learn, advance and connect with one another. Just as participants (link to brochure) in the initiative demonstrate the impact of creativity to engage, foster social cohesion and build local partnerships, the Arts Commission has likewise demonstrated the power of arts and culture to convey vital information within a public health crisis. In addition to Farris, its artist partner, the Arts Commission works with health partners that include the South Carolina Office of Rural Health and the Department of Health and Environmental Control.

La serie de carteles

No dude en imprimir estos carteles para usarlos en sus lugares de trabajo, escuelas y comunidades. Las versiones en español están disponibles gracias a la asociación de SCAC con el Centro Multicultural Art Pot en el condado de Berkeley y su directora artística Maribel Acosta.

Abordando desafíos, celebrando los logros

El propósito de la iniciativa en The Art of Community: Rural SC  es abordar los desafíos de la comunidad y celebrar los resultados locales; utilizar la creatividad para aprender, avanzar y conectarse unos con otros. Así como los participantes (enlace al folleto) en la iniciativa demuestran el impacto de la creatividad para participar, fomentar la cohesión social y construir asociaciones locales, la Comisión de las Artes también ha demostrado el poder de las artes y la cultura para transmitir información vital dentro de una crisis de salud pública. Además de asociarse con el artista Farris, la Comisión de las Artes también trabaja con socios en el sector de la salud, que incluyen la Oficina Salud Rural de Carolina del Sur y el Departamento de Salud y Control Ambiental.

About multi-disciplinary artist Amiri Geuka Farris

With a motto that “art is everything,” Amiri Farris uses a wide range of visual design and expressions to examine issues including nature, culture, memory and perception. His work includes painting, drawing, video, performance and installation.

A resident of Bluffton, Farris is a professor at Savannah College of Art and Design, where he teaches foundation studies and fine arts. He is a community-engaged teaching artist especially active in Beaufort, Hampton and Jasper counties as part of the South Carolina Arts Commission program The Art of Community: Rural SC, which looks at ways arts and culture can be used strategically to address community challenges. Case in point is a new poster commissioned as part of that initiative to be used as a reminder to help stop the spread of infection related to the recent outbreak of the coronavirus. In addition, he has previously supported other public health campaigns that include awareness posters on drunk driving prevention for the Department of Motor Vehicles in Florida; and on the prevention of HIV/Aids for Chatham County, Georgia.

Farris’ artistic work is far-reaching. It has been featured in more than 100 exhibitions in the states, including the National African American Museum of History and Culture in Washington, DC., and internationally. Learn more at