Last year we missed one of our favorite events of the year, cancelled because of Covid. This year, ArtFields returns, the first event of any kind we have attended since the pandemic began. It felt so wonderful to get away, see people, see some amazing art, and feel a little normal again.
Lake City made a huge effort to provide safety for all. Masks (optional in our state now) were mandatory and social distancing enforced so we felt safe attending.
ArtFields was started in 2013 to exhibit artists of the Southeast, while bringing fine arts to rural South Carolinians and revitalizing a small Southern town.
The competition offers over $100,000 in cash prizes. Two People’s Choice Awards are determined by the votes of people visiting ArtFields. A panel of art professionals selects all the other awards, including the $50,000 Grand Prize and $25,000 Second Place award.
While there is never a stated theme, it does seem that most of the artists’ works that are selected by the jury are comments on timely social and political issues of the day.
As one would expect, many and diverse works reflected on the pandemic that has snuffed out the lives of 575,000 Americans and turned the lives of the world upside down for over a year.
I liked this one a lot, telling the stories of some very average people in one neighborhood who answered the question, “How has the coronavirus affected you?”
This photo essay made me think about how I might have answered.
I think I would have said something about missing all the important events and milestones of my family members for over a year, grandchildren growing up, all those sweet moments I can never get back again.
There were about 300 works in the show, spread all around the town, and we spent two full days taking it all in.
I have lots more interesting things to show you, including the pieces we voted for for the People’s Choice Award, and next week, the winners. I hope you will enjoy the wonderful imaginations and the talent of these artists as much as we did!