Take Part in Charleston’s Art Explosion

The Charleston area has a vibrant arts and culture scene. With dozens of theaters, galleries and events showcasing visual, performing and literary arts, the city is alive with creativity and enlightenment. These are just a few ways you can experience Charleston’s rich artistic lifestyle.


photo/David Strauss

YALLFest Literary Event

Celebrating its fifth anniversary is YALLFest, a premier festival for children’s and young adult literature, on Nov. 13-14.

It’s an impressive lineup of authors at this year’s event: New York Times bestselling authors Veronica Roth (“Divergent” trilogy), Gayle Forman (“If I Stay”), Daniel Handler aka Lemony Snicket (“A Series of Unfortunate Events”), Kody Keplinger (“The Duff”), Rick Yancey (“The Fifth Wave Series”), Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl (“Beautiful Creatures Series”), Ann Brashares (“Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” series) and Meg Cabot (“The Princess Diaries” series).

New York Times bestselling author Richelle Mead (“Vampire Academy” series) and legendary children’s book author R.L. Stine (“Goosebumps” series) will give the opening keynote. Winding out the festival will be Brandon Mull (“Fablehaven” series) and Brandon Sanderson (“Mistborn” series).

Tickets are required for keynote events. Check out the free YALLCrawl from 3-5 p.m. Nov. 13. Purchase books and get a map at Blue Bicycle Books, 420 King St., and then make your way to other venues along King Street for author signings.

Evening Art Walks

Relax on a Friday evening with a glass of wine and a stroll through some of Charleston’s finest art galleries. The Charleston Gallery Association – a group of more than 40 art galleries – will host a December art walk. Enjoy refreshments while visiting multiple galleries along lower King Street and through French Quarter from 5-8 p.m. Dec. 4.

The first Friday of each month, visit art galleries along Broad Street from 5-8 p.m. Some 15 galleries, restaurants and shops along Gallery Row open their doors to art lovers.

Free Art Exhibits

The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston School of the Arts provides a multidisciplinary laboratory for visual artists from around the world. Located at 161 Calhoun St., Halsey is open to public with free admission.

Exhibits include Jiha Moon (through Dec. 5), who harvests cultural elements native to Korea, Japan and China and then unites them with Western elements to investigate the multi-faceted nature of our current global identity as influenced by popular culture, technology, racial perceptions and folklore. Also featured at the gallery is Susan Klein (through Dec. 5), whose paintings explore questions of time, of accumulation and losses, of spaces that become layered by history. She often combines imagery from separate places and times into one image.

Holy Trinity AME Church by Betty Anglin Smith

Holy Trinity AME Church by Betty Anglin Smith

Healing Power of Art

As Charlestonians continue to heal from the tragic shooting of nine people at Emanuel AME Church over the summer, a new exhibit will use art to celebrate Charleston’s strength and unity during such a difficult time. More than 90 artists will come together for Artists for Emanuel: Straight from the Heart, an exhibition, reception and silent auction, on Nov. 11. Auction proceeds will benefit the Lowcountry Unity Fund. An exhibition of the artwork is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 10-11 with the auction and reception from 6-9 p.m.  Nov. 11 at the Cigar Factory on East Bay Street.

Musical Sensations


The Gaillard Center, completely renovated and re-opened this fall, has a packed schedule of concerts, shows and dance performances. Enjoy the new world-class performance hall for everything from classical to country.

The Charleston Music Hall hosts a number of entertainers throughout the year from national to local performers. Upcoming shows include Rick Springfield, Judy Collins, Edwin McCain, and Shovels and Rope.

For more art/culture events:

Charleston Regional Alliance for the Arts

League of Charleston Theaters