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Mt. Pleasant women raise awareness, funds for school art
By Jessica Johnson
The Post and Courier
Thursday, March 20, 2008
While volunteering in area schools, Liz Ryan saw how important art is to children.
The loan originator for the Bank of South Carolina in Mount Pleasant also noticed that a lot of schools lack needed art supplies. A conversation that Ryan and friend Kari Kim had about the arts and passions led the Mount Pleasant women to dream up a traveling arts show, Bloom'in Art, that would raise awareness of local artists and funds so that area schools could buy art supplies.
"The premise of Bloom'in Art is growing local arts," Kim said. "It's been a lot of fun."
The women hold shows in area homes, donating a portion of proceeds from art sales to area schools.
"Public schools acknowledge how important art is," Ryan said, "but there is a lack of funding to get supplies there."
Kim said they choose schools in need, those that parents don't have the means to support.
Ryan, whose parents were both artists, finds a lot of truth in Pablo Picasso's quote: "Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."
"All children love to create and draw," Ryan said. "It's just a great outlet; for some children, it's a stress reliever."
Bloom'in Art's first show opened in a Charleston home in November. A second opened in a model home at Hibben in Belle Hall Plantation. Ryan and Kim donated a portion of proceeds from both shows to Mary Ford Elementary in North Charleston recently. The art teacher there had just run out of paint.
Local artists benefit from the shows as well. Some artists sold their art for the first time, and show attendants gain a greater appreciation for the art around them, another of Bloom'in Art's goals.
"There are so many great craftsmen and artisans in town who people don't even know about because they are so busy shopping" at discount stores, Kim said. "You can buy candles from the lady who lives around the corner."
Reach Jessica Johnson at 937-5921 or email@example.com.
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