Visit the new Art Benches around Beaufort’s Cultural District

Sit a spell on the painted benches around Beaufort’s Cultural District and immerse yourself in some amazing local art & history.

Working to integrate art into public spaces, promote creative economy and create a visual sense of the community – Beaufort’s new Art Benches have been built, designed, painted and installed throughout our downtown Cultural Arts District.

Six partner organizations were asked to work with local artists to create a design that would reflect their organization’s mission, identity, and place in the community. Each unique piece utilizes a variety of mediums including acrylic and oil paint, spray paint, oil pastels, wood, digital artwork & more. 

The bench project organized by the Beaufort Cultural Arts District Board (CDAB), began about a year-and-a-half-ago along with LowCountry Habitat for Humanity, whose carpenters built each 4-foot long bench.

Each bench had a special visit this past week by the South Carolina Arts Commission, who conducted a Canvass of the People workshop at USCB Center for the Arts. This program is ongoing and continues to beautify our community.

So next time you’re downtown and have a few minutes…take a stroll through Beaufort’s Cultural Arts District and enjoy the beauty and practicality of these one-of-a-kind Art Benches.


Find them around town…


Artists Sandy Dimke and Tom Van Steenbergh outside the Santa Elena History Center – Photo courtesy City of Beaufort

Sponsor: Santa Elena History Center

Artists: Frank Anson, Tom Van Steenbergh, Sandy Dimke, Lynne Darling

Theme: Beaufort’s earliest history and heritage

Location: Courtyard at Bay and Bladen streets

Artist Omar Patterson with his bench, Low Country Dreaming, outside the Beaufort County Black Chamber of Commerce – Photo courtesy City of Beaufort

Sponsor: Beaufort County Black Chamber of Commerce

Artist: Omar Patterson

Theme: Lowcountry Dreaming

Location: Corner of Bladen and Duke streets

From left, Habitat carpenters Rick Eastin and Ken Crooke, and artist Linda Silk Sviland. Habitat’s bench is at Waterfront Park – Photo courtesy City of Beaufort

Sponsor: Lowcountry Habitat for Humanity

Artist: Linda Silk Sviland

Theme: Seeking to put God’s love into action

Location: Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park

The bench outside USCB – University of South Carolina Beaufort Arts Center. Artists Mary Ann Ford and John Rodriguez; and master builder Greg Rawls were not able to be there.- Photo courtesy City of Beaufort

Sponsor: University of South Carolina Beaufort

Artists: Mary Ann Ford and John Rodriguez; master builder Greg Rawls

Theme: Beaufort College – Rich Heritage of Education

Location: Entrance to Center for the Arts, Carteret Street

Shelley Barratt, one of the several artists from the Digital Corridor who worked on their bench.- Photo courtesy City of Beaufort

Sponsor: Beaufort Digital Corridor

Artists: Jess O’Brien, Aaron Miller, Shawn Hill, Shelley Barratt, Brian Canada

Theme: Plug-In

Location: Corner of Carteret and North streets


Sponsor: National Reconstruction Era National Park

Artist: Ginger Wareham, Owner & Creative Director of EatStayPlayBeaufort & PickleJuice

Theme: United when the impossible suddenly became possible

Location: Beaufort Arsenal Courtyard, Craven Street