MEET OUR ARTISTS
Columbia, S.C., native and resident David Yaghjian has exhibited across the Carolinas, including Blue Spiral I Gallery in Asheville, N.C., the Florence (S.C.) Museum of Art, Gallery 80808 and Morris Gallery in Columbia and Hampton III Gallery in Greenville, S.C. In Atlanta, where he used to live, Yaghjian has shown in the Spruill Center Gallery, the Right Brain Gallery and other venues. He also painted two murals in the Georgia capital. Yaghjian holds a BA from Massachussetts’ Amherst College and studied in New York City at the Art Students League and the School of Visual Art. Among his instructors were Fairfield Porter, Leonard Baskin, Will Barnett and Chaim Koppelman.
Eileen Blyth is a Columbia artist known for her paintings, sculptures and installations of found objects. Originally from Charleston, she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Charleston and studied graphic design at The University of South Carolina. Eileen's work is represented by The Camilla Art Gallery in Hilton Head, Carol Saunders Gallery in Columbia and Art & Light Gallery in Greenville, South Carolina.
With over a hundred awards to his name at the regional and national levels, Gerard Erley has had over four dozen solo exhibits throughout the United States and exhibited in over 300 juried shows. The artist’s work has hung in museums and galleries from New York to California, and can be found in museum, corporate and private collections both in the United States and abroad. Recent awards of note: eighth grant from the South Carolina Arts Commission; Best of Show at the SC State Fair Professional Exhibition; First Place in the portrait competition at ArtFields in Lake City, SC; two First Place awards in the Oil Painters of America Plein Air Paint Out in Winnsboro, SC.
Having worked as a professional artist and teacher for over 40 years, her approach to art-making and teaching are well honed. Both are influenced by her enthusiastic passion for travel, her quest to understand her nighttime dreams and her longing to find the quiet in the roar. Her art and her teaching are intuitive expressions of the universal search for meaning. This quest has taken her across the world studying spiritual rituals in India and Bali, Mexican death traditions, Jungian Dream psychology, Tibetan mandalas, and expressive writing.
For a decade, Kirkland Smith has been creating contemporary assemblages using everyday disposable materials as an evocative way to drive home the message of the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling. Through her work she challenges viewers to consider their consumer habits and believes “what we throw away says a lot about who we are, but what we choose to cherish and protect says even more.”
Michel specializes in portraits, landscapes, and works in series. She enjoys painting realistically with an interpretive style. In her portraits, she strives to create figures that are realistic and uses symbolism to reflect the personality of her model. Constantly inspired by the life and beauty found in everyday surroundings, McNinch conveys that inspiration onto the canvas and seeks to connect with her viewers in the resulting images.
In Pat’s early years and through her teens she grew up in Atlanta, GA, and West Palm Beach, FL. Next it was off to college for several years at Georgia State University and the University of Kansas, where she eventually earned a Ph.D. in geography and cartography. She then moved to Victoria, British Columbia, where she accepted her first teaching position in cartography at the University of Victoria, B.C. After teaching there for four years, she joined the Department of Geography at the University of South Carolina where she continued to teach cartography. Finally she retired and turned her full attention to art, a lifelong interest of hers. She continues to find great satisfaction in her work in ceramic sculpture and, occasionally, other media.
Sharon is a graduate of Agnes Scott College with a B.A. in Art and Political Science, and USC with a Masters of Media Arts. A sculptor of both realistic and abstract form, Sharon works in a variety of media: stone, bronze, clay, and formed stone. Her sculptures are in numerous private and corporate collections as she has shown in many parts of the country. When not in the studio, she can usually be found teaching statewide as a "Visiting Artist" for the SC Arts Commission.
Stephen Chesly was born in Schenectady New York in 1952. He ehibited a natural proclivity for drawing and art almost as soon as he could hold pastel and pencil which were often Christmas gifts from his family.Growing up in Virginia Beach in the late 1950’s he was exposed to the ‘Beat Generation’ of musicians, artist, and writers when Virgina Beach was still a seasonal seaside resort. Self motivated, he continued with his drawing and small paintings along with exposure to local artist.
The work of Malik Greene depicts his personal history through intimate oil portraits of family, moments, and memories that convey his experience as a Black Man and artist. The subjects within his art convey a specific power that does not rely on systemic pain, trauma, or past offenses to propel his artistic vision. Nevertheless, these figures covertly convey the residual effects of their environment and how this may innately influence one's identity.
The School of Visual Art and Design at the University of South Carolina occupies an off-campus studio space inside of Stormwater Studios. We’ve designed our studio to be an ideal working environment for artists to test new ideas and experiment with materials. The SVAD Studio provides essential space for students and faculty, both emerging and established artists, and community members to develop new work, lead workshops, give educational talks, and host exhibitions. Our studio space joins the flexibility of a workspace with the simplicity of a gallery to also meet our exhibition needs. The SVAD Studio is also where bright thoughts and ideas are communicated to listeners and visitors during workshops, seminars, and lectures.