Beaufort News

Art group's new home offers more visibility, space for classes

The Beaufort Art Association Gallery is on the move this week to a new spot on Bay Street that members say will make it more visible and provide room for on-site classes.

For about six years, the association has operated its gallery in the historic Elliott House at the corner of Bay and Charles streets.

"It's a beautiful house with gorgeous architecture," association member and photographer Sandy Dimke said. "But so many people didn't know our store was there because the space was up a whole flight of stairs. ... Realistically, for our exhibiting and sales -- which really is the bottom line -- it's nice that we now have an actual storefront."

The new location is in the heart of downtown at 913 Bay St., the former location of De Ja Vu Upscale Resale and, before that, the Cat's Meow.

The new location offers enough space to show between 100 and 150 pieces.

"We have everything from three-dimensional baskets and pottery, to oil paintings and photography," Dimke said.

The new location also will feature a space for art workshops, unlike the Elliott House, Dimke said.

The gallery shut down earlier this month and will reopen at the new space on Friday with a reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. featuring the art of Arlene Peck.

Created in 1957, the Beaufort Art Association is a nonprofit organization with about 200 members, 70 of whom display their work at the gallery, Dimke said.

Every six weeks, the gallery features one artist and changes its displays, she said.

In a news release, the association said gallery members are "excited because this new space provides great windows for display and barrier-free access for walk-in traffic."

The gallery will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.


Other recent business openings, closings and changes in the area:

  • The Smokey Chef Restaurant on Lady's Island closed recently after it was unable to renegotiate a lease with the building's owner, according to the restaurant's voicemail.
  • Attempts to reach Chris Mixson, owner and chef and who also operated Smokey Chef Catering from the space, were unsuccessful.

    Smokey Chef Catering will move to a new location while options for a future restaurant space are sought, according to the voicemail.

    "I would like to thank all of our loyal restaurant customers from the bottom of my heart," it said. "I hope to reconnect with you in the future."