Monday letters: Arts critical for our state, lives

June 17, 2013 

— Do you listen to music?

Do you go to the movies?

Do you surf the internet?

Do you have furniture?

Do you watch television?

Do you wear clothes?

Do you drive a car?

Do you live in a house or an apartment building?

Do you read books, newspapers, magazines, etc.?

I suspect the answer to most of these questions is a resounding “yes.” Every one of these activities and products were designed and produced by artists or those utilizing artistic concepts. Artists and businesses that create these products and services make up the creative economy, which contributes over $9.2 billion annually to our state’s economy.

The S.C. Arts Commission is the state agency responsible for ensuring that the arts are accessible to all. The staff are passionate about the arts and work to help artists and arts professionals grow personally and institutionally. In addition to giving grants to arts organizations, the commission provides access to workshops and seminars to arts professionals and artists, gives one-on-one technical assistance, supports arts education initiatives and acts as a conduit and resource for national and international cultural opportunities for S.C. artists and institutions.

The Arts Commission has fostered the growth of the state’s creative economy by providing these services, allowing the citizenry to experience the creation and presentation of all arts forms and decide on careers that will continue to grow the state’s economy. Life without the arts would be life without form, color, design or discipline. The Arts Commission ensures that our lives are complete, and provides tools necessary for the economic health of our state.

Norree Boyd-Wicks

Columbia

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