Leave your mark on Charleston’s art scene Help Redux beat the heat

Artist Paula McInerny works on a palette knife painting in her studio at Redux Contemporary Art Center. The center, which serves an array of roles in Charleston’s arts community, will hold a fundraiser Saturday.

There’s no other place in Charleston quite like Redux Contemporary Art Center, or Redux as it’s commonly known.

Formed in 2002 by a group of College of Charleston graduates, this nonprofit organization serves the artistic community of Charleston as well as the greater Charleston community of budding artists. Fittingly, it’s unusual name was taken from the Latin word “reducere” which translates to “brought back” or “restored,” with the goal to redesign the art community and, by extension, community engagement with the arts. But, as it turns out, some things can’t be restored. Some things just have to be replaced outright.

In a cruel twist of fate that most Charlestonians can relate to, one of Redux’s air conditioning systems has pumped out it’s last blast of cold air. So, what better way for a nonprofit artistic community to raise funds to replace it than with an art-themed fundraiser?

“It definitely was not part of our plan to replace an HVAC unit,” said Stacy Huggins, executive director at Redux. “We’ve all been dying in the space because it’s been so hot. And now we’re trying to recoup the expense and it has been brutal.”

As a community arts space, Redux provides studio space for working local artists. Additionally, the nonprofit is home to the city’s only public print studio and darkroom. But Redux doesn’t just provide exhibitions and workspace for local artists; the organization also supports arts education and outreach programs. In fact, some of the events in the pipeline at Redux are aimed at art education: art camps for kids and a continuation of their Inspirations Pathways program.

Saturday’s Redux Revival fundraiser offers more than it’s fair share of prizes, food, and live music. And since Redux is committed to supporting local artists in Charleston, nearly all of the art, food and drink, and prizes are from locals, Creole Food Truck, King of Pops, D’Allesandro’s Pizza, and Holy City Brewing to name a few. Come for the food, stay for the incredible local art. Redux will be raffling off original art from Redux artists, prints by Shepard Fairey and Dos Bandidos, and gift certificates to local businesses. Handmade screen-printed posters and new Redux T-shirts will be available for purchase.

The biggest draw of the event is that Redux is also selling squares of outside wall space and providing painting and tagging supplies for locals to make their mark on the building. Squares are $50.

Local Redux artist Todd Anderson has been the catalyst for the fundraiser.

“He’s the energy and the driving force behind it,” Huggins said of Anderson. And even if the challenges of running a community art space sometimes seem insurmountable, the camaraderie is well worth the setbacks.

“If you’re not in a community like Redux, it can be very isolated and lonely for artists. And it’s such a tight community we have at Redux,” Huggins said. “I’m sure I’ll get teary at the event while thanking everyone.”

The Redux Revival fundraiser will be 6-9 p.m. Saturday at 136 Philip St. This event is free and open to the public. Visit www.facebook.com/events/1500488563574718 for details.