Just over one year ago, The Technical College of the Lowcountry Foundation announced the creation of the TCL Teaching Collection, a unique assortment of fine art, antiques, artifacts and memorabilia donated to the College to facilitate student learning, faculty instruction, research and curriculum development.
After gathering a wide variety of pieces over the last year, the Foundation will host the Collection’s inaugural exhibition, “An Exhibition of Acquisitions 2010-2011,” Thursday, May 19 and Friday, May 20 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the TCL New River Campus in Bluffton. The event is free and open to the public.
“This is an exciting opportunity to acknowledge the generosity of those who contributed these fascinating works of art, antiques, artifacts and objects of distinction,” Executive Director of the TCL Foundation Dianne Garnett said. “We believe through the study of objects we gain an understanding of societies past and present.”
Each object, also referred to as realia, will be described in the exhibition catalogue prepared by Collections Manager, Charles McCracken, a professional fine art appraiser who believes paintings, rare books and other collectibles can only be properly valued when viewed in their historical and cultural context.
“The underlying premise of the TCL Teaching Collection is – we create realia, it defines us, it tells our story. As we investigate objects thoroughly, we contribute to the exciting and interdisciplinary academic field of material culture studies,” McCracken said.
Displays in the exhibition include expensive art works that one might expect to see featured in a museum, such as a contemporary “soft painting” by Calman Shemi circa 1990 and an antique portrait painting circa 1850 of a young girl in her garden.
Additionally, there are more common-place items, such as old tools, a replica of Antonie van Leeuwenhoek’s first microscope, and a 1930s vintage American Streamlined aluminum office chair – each important pieces of the Collection.
“When studying material culture, we consider objects from all time periods, all walks of life, all levels of a society,” McCracken said.
The TCL Foundation establishes private sector support to further enhance the College’s teaching and educational capabilities while supporting TCL’s vision to provide innovative workforce solutions. In addition, the Foundation has awarded more than $1.7 million in scholarship funds since its founding in 1983.
For more information, please call 843.525.8294 or visit www.tcl.edu/foundation/teaching-collection.
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