Charles Street Gallery's Annual Invitational opens with an Artist Reception on Friday, December 18th, 5:30-9:30pm, and runs through January 9th.

The colors of the Lowcountry shine in the morning, shimmer across the water, vine tightly through the neighborhoods, and settle onto the canvases of artists of this resplendent region. In this 5th annual invitational, the tones are bold, the hues are vivid, and each artist's imagination is drenched in ROY G BIV. Working in pastels, watercolors, oils, film, and more media, Charles Street Gallery's invited artists are at their spectrum-filling best for this holiday show, including Karen Peluso, Sharon DeAlexandris, Benton Lutz, Lynn Brown, Sharon Hardy, Joan Templer, Carol Henry, and a few others who will bring their purple perspectives, red renditions, and orange homages to fill the tall walls of a "locals' favorite" gallery. The public is invited to the reception and to browse the gallery through January the 9th to experience the colors these select artists have chosen:
     "I stopped in the gallery to talk with Georgia one day," artist Sharon Hardy mentioned, "and I noticed in the yard a tree covered with beautiful blue morning glories." The Charles Street Gallery has a thoughtful garden that heartily displays Lowcountry flora. "I was so taken with them that I asked Georgia if I could have a few, and I took them home. I took a lot of photos of them, and have composed a contemporary painting of just four, in a very graphic, modified way, using the essence of the morning glories. They just kind of pop out, on a little 10X10 sheet paper. I think it's quite nice, abstract, graphic and blue."
     “Black is a color," explained photographer Karen Peluso. "White, though technically defined as the absence of color, is a color too. Since I specialize in black and white images, at first the theme “Lowcountry Colors” challenged me. I’ve chosen to exhibit a porch scene, architectural vignette, of one of Beaufort's Bay Street homes. It's titled, "All Stirred Up." In reality, the shutters are painted “Charleston Green,” but to me, they are just black—sometimes with a greenish cast and sometimes not.”
    "One of the fascinating things about the scenic quality of the Lowcountry," said Jim Rothnie, "is that much of its visual appeal comes from its grasses, including most famously the spartina grass of our tidal marshes. The color and texture of our grasses change with the seasons. For the 2009 Invitational, I have done paintings of autumn grasses, the yellow-orange of "Grassy Rice Dike in Fall" and the rosy hues of "Sweet Grass in Fall".
     Find – and name – your Lowcountry colors at  the Charles Street Gallery, an established source for Lowcountry and international art, presented within a carefully renovated house surrounded by a lush garden in the middle of Beaufort's historic district. 914 Charles Street 29902, 843-521-9054, .