“We like to think we are on the move!” exclaims Kathleen Carland, executive director of the South County Art Association. The nonprofit art organization has been a fixture in the coastal arts community since the late 1920s, when an informal exhibit between friends turned into tradition. Today, they’re home to diverse art shows, art instruction, community programming – and a new look.
The makeover began in 2016, Carland explains, when they launched a campaign to paint the outside of their two historic buildings and renovate their print studio. In 2018, they debuted a new website and logo designed by students at Johnson & Wales to match. They posted colorful outdoor signage to make them “easier to spot in sleepy, historic Kingston.” They saw record sales at this past Holiday Sale. And, in January, they wrapped up phase one of gallery renovations, including painting the ceilings and walls and refinishing the floors – just in time to offer a fresh backdrop for their spring events: their Annual Photography Exhibit (through March 14), Spring Classes Preview Open House (March 7), RISCA Fellowship Exhibition (opening March 20), and Annual Earthworks Exhibit (opening April 30).
“The gallery experience is really at the core of the organization,” says Carland, and “more enhancements are on the way.” The second phase of reno will include working with an architect to restructure the gallery and move windows to create more space for displaying art. “The vision for the future is making progress!”