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Southern Exposures to open 2016 gallery season
High Morning Mist
High Morning Mist by Helen Smith Warren - photo by FAC

The Fine Arts Center of Kershaw County (FAC) will open the 2016 Bassett Gallery exhibition season with a new exhibition beginning Jan. 28. The exhibition titled "Southern Exposures: From the Mountains to the Sea" features the works of landscape artists Helen Smith Warren and Mary Deas Boykin Wortley, both of whom have strong ties to the Camden area through family, friends and the equestrian world. The opening reception will take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28 and will be catered by The Mill Pond Steakhouse. Camden Community Theatre’s Little Shop of Horrors will open immediately following at 8 p.m. This exhibition, which runs through March 4, is sponsored by Marty Daniels, Harriet and John DuBose, Di DuBose, Edie DuBose, Molly and Billy Nettles, Mark Price, and Kitty and Henry Beard.

Helen Smith Warren was born and educated in Charleston, South Carolina where she still lives with her husband. She has spent her life raising three children, riding and training horses, as well as teaching horseback riding. Growing up, Helen spent many years in Camden participating in various equestrian events.

Warren only recently began her venture into the world of painting landscapes in oils.

"My first foray into painting in 2001 was pure serendipity," she said. "An accomplished artist and dear friend set up an easel next to mine and put a brush in my hand. It was magic. Time disappeared and in that moment, my world changed and I have been in love with the process ever since."

She has exhibited her work in several galleries in North and South Carolina including a juried exhibition at Piccolo Spoleto in 2008, and most recently at the 2014 Confederate Home Tour of Studios in Charleston.

Mary Deas Boykin Wortley, a descendant of the Camden Boykins, has won several awards at the Middletown Art Center in her hometown of Middletown, Ohio. She, along with several family members, still own the well-known Boykin property, Mulberry Plantation, in Camden.

Mary Deas graduated from Sweet Briar College in Virginia where she studied psychology and art history. She worked as an elementary school teacher in Washington, DC and as a social worker for abused and neglected children in Butler County, Ohio. She has also taught stoneware sculpture at the Middletown Art Center in Ohio. Wortley studied painting with Arlene Klafter and Laura Livingston at the Middletown Art Center and sculpture with Mike Heiber. Mary Deas has exhibited at the Middletown Art Center and at the Atrium Center Gallery in Ohio. This is her first exhibition in South Carolina.

For more information call 803-425-7676, ext. 310 or visit the FAC website at The FAC is at 810 Lyttleton Street, Camden. Office hours are Monday through Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. and Thursday 10 a.m.- 6 p.m.

The Fine Arts Center is a 501c3 organization funded in part by the Frederick S. Upton Foundation and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding provided by the City of Camden, Kershaw County, and BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina along with donations from businesses and individuals.