Wooden Boat Show Featured Artist

The Harbor Historical Association of Georgetown will present the 23nd Annual Wooden Boat Show on Saturday October 20, 2012 from 11 AM to 6 PM. They are pleased to announce the selection of artist and artwork for the eagerly anticipated annual event. A painting by Keels Culberson Swinnie, a popular local artist and an area native, has been selected as the official painting that will be showcased on the 2012 Wooden Boat Show poster.

Keels grew up on the Waccamaw Neck at her Daddy’s heels. She cherishes memories of working on boats every afternoon – with her Father and as a family– especially in cooler months when surfing wasn’t as appealing an option. Then the family would climb aboard and go rowing on the Waccamaw River. It was a routine she loved; what child wouldn’t?

The inspiration for the 2012 Wooden Boat Show’s official painting grew from Keels’ memories. In subject matter and mood, it evokes the charm of Norman Rockwell with Lowcountry subject matter. Her Dad’s long ponytail remains the same – albeit it a bit more gray. She shares his intense, ice-blue eyes. Notice surfboards hanging from the ceiling. Notice she is on tiptoe. She remembers those afternoons vividly and has recreated them in detail in this year’s Boat Show painting.

No one  in-the-know will deny Keels came by her talent honestly. Her Father, Henry Culberson, is well known and loved throughout the Lowcountry for building surfboards, crafting exquisite boats, masterminding all manner of woodworking projects, raising bees and other uncommon endeavors. He is also a former Georgetown Wooden Boat Challenge competitor – and winner.

Keels Culberson Swinnie graduated from Converse College in 2004. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design and Art History. Then she studied Studio Art at the College of Charleston, and continued her education at the Santa Reparata International School of Art in Florence, Italy. Her work is colorful, evocative and embraces a variety of subject matter. Of course, the ocean, Carolina Lowcountry and all things related frequently take center stage. A self-proclaimed travel hound, though, the landscapes of Italy, Greece and Costa Rica also influence vibrant color choices, subject matter and all the minutiae that transform art into fine art.

Keels has work displayed in galleries, private homes and businesses all over South Carolina and beyond. She serves as a board member for the Pawleys Island Festival of Music & Art and the Kathy Metts Memorial Art Scholarship committee. She is one of four founding members of the Ebb & Flow Art Co-op in Murrells Inlet. Anyone interested in seeing more of her work should visit Ebb & Flow Art and Pawleys Lifestyles on the North Causeway in Pawleys Island. Learn more at www.KeelsArt.com.


This year’s show will, as it always does, feature one of the nation’s premier wooden boat exhibits, a wooden boatbuilding competition, children’s model boatbuilding, maritime art & crafts, food and music. These events will take place on the waterfront and along Front Street in Historic Downtown Georgetown. Funds procured through sales and donations will go toward the development of the Georgetown Maritime Museum. Admission is free to the public.
For more information, visit www.WoodenBoatShow.com, call 843-527-4110 and check out the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WoodenBoatShow.
If you need accommodations during the Wooden Boat show, contact me and I’ll be happy to help you make arrangements: TroiKaz@DeBordieu.com, 843-455-4523.

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