If there's one thing that we've learned from Wes Anderson films, it's that reality would be a heckuva lot better if every moment was as beautifully composed as a painting, and better yet, a framed one, with cursive writing along the bottom. If you're looking to get your art on this summer, head to these cool galleries.
Cone 10 Studios
This working clay studio cooperative offers not just a gallery where you can browse finished pieces, but also the chance to see the studio's potters and sculptors at work. Visitors are welcome throughout the entire space, and can even request tours to learn about the artist's process from raw clay to kiln.
French Quarter Galleries
The French Quarter, which is the area roughly bordered by Market and Broad streets to the north and south and East Bay and King streets to the east and west, is home to more galleries than you could visit in an entire weekend — but you can always try. Some of our favorites are Corrigan Gallery, Principle Gallery, Ella Walton Richardson Gallery, and Robert Lange Studios. Many of the galleries belong to the French Quarter Gallery Association, so check their website for a list and a map of the area.
Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
The city's most forward-thinking haven for contemporary art, the Halsey puts on three to four world-class exhibitions per year, all of which are free and open to the public. This summer, you can see sculptor Alyson Shotz' Force of Nature (through July 11) and folk artist Lonnie Holley's Something to Take My Place (opening in August).
Redux is one of the best places in town to develop your own artistic inclinations, as they've got a full calendar of classes in a wide variety of mediums year-round. Kid or adult, beginner or expert, screen-printer or classical oil painter — no matter what group you fit in, you can find something to suit your tastes.
This boutique hotel, which locals will know as the former, completely overhauled Vendue Inn, has the distinction of being Charleston's first and only art hotel, which means that contemporary art is integral to every aspect of the space. And not the boring, emotionless hotel kind. The Vendue's rotating art collection is curated by Robert and Megan Lange of Robert Lange Studios, and they bring in fine works from around the world, as well as right here in Charleston.