Mission: The mission of the Association is to encourage artists, by promoting interest and advancement in the visual and ceramic arts. Membership is open to anyone interested in furthering these aims as an artist or supporter of the arts.
History: The South County Art Association's first exhibition was held in 1927, in the Wickford studio of artist John W. Dawson. He became its first President when the Association was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1929. Since 1944, it has been located in the historic Helme House (c 1802), 2587 Kingstown Rd, in Kingston, RI. The Annex building, at 2579 Kingstown Rd., dating to 1759, is home to the Pottery Workshop as well as to drawing, painting, and printmaking studios. The newly renovated "red barn" is now home to our beautiful stone carving studio.
Membership: New members are always welcome. Currently over 250 members belong to the South County Art Association. The annual Membership fee is $65. Members receive discounts on classes and may participate in all membership activities. Each member receives a bi-monthly newsletter, invitations to all classes and exhibition openings, as well as opportunities to exhibit their work in the Member's Annual and Artist Member Invitational Exhibits. Members are also able to participate in the annual Holiday Pottery and Affordable Art sale. Each August there is a Dinner Under the Trees meal in which Members are able to gather together and celebrate a year of art and accomplishment. Members are encouraged to participate in a variety of volunteer positions which include, among others, helping with exhibitions, hospitality, fundraising, and gallery work.
Pottery Studio: Pottery studio facilities are available to current SCAA members who purchase a studio-use package. Members must have taken Pottery I & II or an advanced class (5 weeks or more) at SCAA within the last 3 years to join the pottery studio, The studio may be used each day from 8 am to 10 pm, during non class times. The studio is equipped with 2 electric kilns, 1 gas kiln, 12 potter’s wheels, and the necessary equipment needed to make a wide variety of ceramic work. A part time studio manager is on staff to fire all work and make glazes. Work produced must be of an educational nature only, as production/commercial work is not permitted by the non - profit regulations of our facility. Studio use fees: are $550/year, $350/6 months. A wide assortment of clay is available through SCAA at $33/25#, and includes firing and glazing fees. Clay purchased outside of SCAA is not permitted in the studio. Members and students may fire up to 30#'s of bone dry clay per month. Pieces which take up 75% or more of two horizontal kiln shelves are limited to one per month. Please visit our office to get more information.
$65 Associate Member Fee for the Pottery Workshop allows any SCAA member to purchase up to 400 lbs. of clay per year (no more than 100 lbs a month), as well as glaze and tools from our pottery shop. Glazes will be mixed to order by our studio manager. You may also purchase a gas fire package for $65 which will enable you to fire a load of your work in our gas fire kiln. Gas fire glaze fee $25
Print Making Studio: Print making facilities are available to current members who purchase a studio-use package. Members must have taken or taught an advanced print making class at SCAA within the last 3 years to join the print making studio. The studio is a green facility, using only non toxic printing methods. We have a new Whelan Express etching press with a 23” x 50” bed. Work produced must be of an educational nature only, as production/commercial work is not permitted by the non - profit regulations of our facility. Studio use fees are $325/year. Please visit our office to get more information.
Stone Carving Studio: Stone Carving facilities are available to current members who purchase a stone carving package. Members must have taken or taught a stone carving class at SCAA within the last 3 years to join the stone carving studio. The studio is equipped with 6 stone carving benches, running water, and a vaccum to clean up the stone dust. Work produced must be of an educational nature only, as production/commercial work is not permitted by the non-profit regulations of our facility. Studio use fees are $225/year. Please visit our office to get more information.
Painting Studios: The Helme House has 9 studios for members to rent on the 2nd and 3rd floors of this historic building. Studios have great windows, hard wood floors, shared bathrooms, a small kitchenette, and easy parking. Working hours are seven days a week, 8 am - 11 pm. The studios vary in size from
10’ x 12’ to 15’ x 18’, and range in price from $175 to $250 per month (utilities included). Smoking is not permitted. Please call for availability, and to schedule a guided tour of our beautiful spaces.
Programs: Members run an active and varied exhibition program, open to the public five days a week, in the Helme House galleries. Each new exhibition begins with an opening reception, giving artists and the public a chance to be together and enjoy the show. SCAA offers classes and workshops in drawing, painting, sculpture, photography and clay along with several informative lectures on working as a professional artist.
- Opening receptions are held the first Thursday of each exhibition from 7 to 9 pm.
- Cash prizes are awarded in open juried shows and in the Members Annual show.
- SCAA collects a commission on works sold, 30% for Members and 35% for Non-members.
- Entry fees for juried shows are $14 for Members and $17 for Non-members for each artwork submitted.
- Credit cards / checks gladly accepted