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We are continuously inspired by local, regional, and national companies who take an active role in supporting nonprofit initiatives and the communities in which they operate their business. This November we have partnered with The Halsey for a screening of the newly release documentary, Watermark, revleaing the powerful connection between water and human existance. We caught up with the Halsey Team to chat more about the film, Charleston and our community’s connection to art:  

1.The Halsey was founded on the idea of creating “meaningful interactions between adventurous artists and diverse communities,” can you tell us how you cultivate these interactions? Why are they important to Charleston’s culture? 

 The great thing about contemporary art is that it is constantly evolving in the present moment. The works are reflections of our current culture and the shadow we cast – it is the art of our time. We feel contemporary art has the ability to resonate within a society. We focus on adventurous and under-recognized artists, people making fascinating and awe inspiring works that the general public may have never heard of. Sometimes these artists are “from off” and add balance to the voices in our local art scene. When we as a community interact with and meet these artists and their ideas, we all benefit from the diversification of thought.

 By connecting our community to artists that possess the ability to distill our shared human experiences, we are connecting our community to their voice. In Charleston, we are steeped in history, certainly ours, but also the history of our nation’s founding. Our history is rich and deep, and through the herculean efforts of local organizations, it will be preserved for years to come. This history is only part of our city’s identity. It is important for us to connect to contemporary issues and expressions so that, as a community, we can truly know ourselves.

2.Tell us a little bit more about why you decided to show Watermark

We had a show of the Edward Burtynsky’s photographs, No Man’s Land: Contemporary Photographers and Fragile Ecologies, in 2004. He is a friend of the Halsey Institute and among the world’s most significant ecologically-minded artists. In addition to the film’s stunning visual imagery, there is an over-arching message of reverence for this precious resource an the need to respect its power – it supports our very existence on this planet. Art has a way of communicating ideas in a way that language cannot. Words have different meanings and impact for different people. With art, we are given a visual representation to connect with. Our hope is that folks will attend the film, learn about Charleston Waterkeeper and their efforts and programming, then become good stewards of our environment.

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We need healthy oceans. We need clean rivers. Water doesn’t need us, we need water.

3. In your own words, why is clean water vital to a healthy community, such as Charleston?

It’s a matter of geography! Our city is surrounded by water and our early economic development is tied to our beautiful matrix of waterways. Not only are we interested in clean water for the sake of our boating and swimming activities, but we must also care for the plants and animals affected by our activity on the water. It’s wonderful that Charleston has an organization like Charleston Waterkeeper to help us monitor our waterways with clear, trackable data that can be accessed by any citizen. We are surrounded by natural beauty and the capability to maintain this healthy, vibrant environment. It is our responsibility to be good stewards of the land and water we inhabit because, we are really only borrowing it, caring for it while our children grow up.

Thank you, Halsey Team, for all of your support! We hope to see everyone next Wednesday at the Charleston Music Hall!

Click here for details about the screening.

Click here to view the movie trailer.

A few more images from The Halsey

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