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2018 Public Art Exhibition Runs Through January

Michael Gonzalez



May 9 5 minutes read

If you’re thinking that you might miss the biennial public art exhibition on Hilton Head because you are caught up in the bustle of the holiday season, hold that thought. The fact is, you’ve still got time. The exhibition will run through January 31, 2019 (usually runs October through December).

So, if you don’t get to the exhibition before the New Year is about to arrive, put it on your list of January to-dos. Meanwhile, here are some fast facts that are helpful to know before you go.

The exhibition showcases 20 sculptures. 

As has been the case in the past, the outdoor exhibition features 20 giant sculptures created by artists who hail from various parts of the country, including two from Hilton Head. You’ll find all but one of the works of art installed along Coastal Discovery Museum’s picturesque pathway, creatively placed in open fields and amid centuries-old oak trees, pristine marshes and camellia gardens.

One sculpture is installed at Hilton Head Island Airport. 

New this year, one of the pieces is placed at a venue outside of the Coastal Discovery Museum. It’s entitled “You are (on) an island” and it’s a neon work that greets visitors at HHI airport with an animated play on words that nudges them to think about the world and the place they have in it. When going to the airport to view it, park in the short-term lot to get two hours of free parking. 

You can download an exhibition app this year. 

Another one of the new things this year is the availability of an app for the exhibition. It includes an interactive map and narratives recorded by each of the artists. You can listen to them talk about their works and the inspiration that lead to their creation. The app is available on the iTunes app store (Apple) and Google Play (Android). 

You get to vote for your favorite piece. 

People’s Choice Award winners will be announced two days prior to the close of the exhibition. If the artist that you vote for is among the top three whose sculpture earns the most votes, he/she will receive a cash award. You have three ways to vote: by paper ballot at Coastal Discovery Museum, on the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry website or on their Facebook page.

There’s a contest with a grant award as a prize. 

If you do go to view the exhibition before the year is done, note that if you take a photo with one of the 20 sculptures and upload it to the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry Facebook page, you’ll be automatically entered into a random drawing. Win the contest and you get to pick a local arts organization to receive a $5000 grant from the Foundation. The contest ends December 31.

Admission is FREE for self-guided tours. 

If you’re one who likes to stroll through art exhibitions at your own pace, you have that as an option. Get a map onsite or by clicking here (PDF). Admission to the Coastal Discovery Museum grounds is FREE and hours are 9am-4:30pm weekdays and 11am-3pm Sundays (Hours for the airport installation coincide with the airport). Call 843.689.6767 for museum holiday hours.

Docent-led tours are available if you prefer.

Those wanting to take a deeper dive of the exhibition can do so on Friday afternoons at 1pm. Docents will be on hand at the museum at that time to lead tours. There is a small fee associated with these tours. The cost is $10 per adult and $5 per child (5-12). Reservations are requested and a good idea. Call 843.689.6767 ext. 223 to see if there are spaces available.

Enjoy your journey through this exhibit of fanciful sculptures. And, stay tuned to local news and the exhibition web page to see which one of the pieces will have the honor of joining Hilton Head’s permanent art collection on display throughout the island, helping to make it even more beautiful and idyllic than it already naturally is.

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