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Chapman Cultural Center Awards First Quarter Community Grants

August 03, 2018 | Features

Chapman Cultural Center is committed to broadening and strengthening Spartanburg's Cultural community. Because of this commitment, a major part of the work we do is centered around funding Spartanburg's arts and cultural community. 

One of Chapman Cultural Center's major funding opportunities comes in the form of our quarterly Community Grants Program. The Community Grants Program awards up to $5,000 per application and is open to both individual artists and non-profits/government agencies.

Mediums supported include performing, visual, literary, crafts, and folk arts. The grants are awarded quarterly and are funded in part by the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John and Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina. 

We're proud to announce we've awarded the following artists and organization a Community Grant for our Quarter 1, 2018-2019, grants cycle! Learn more about their projects and programs below! 


Anthony Modesto

The goal of Anthony's project is to tell the stories of people living and working within our community. His project is a continuation of work he began in 2013 and has told the stories of over 300 individuals. The project's current phase will focus more on individuals within different marginalized communities with a concentration on individuals with DACA (Deferred action for childhood arrivals) status. This phase will also include the stories of people within LGBT, African American, single parent, economically distressed, and previously incarcerated communities throughout the Spartanburg Community. 


BirthMatters project focused on promoting pelvic and womb health to the Spartanburg community. To accomplish this, BirthMatters facilitated conversation promoting awareness about womb and pelvic health; while eating lunch at the Nest artlet on Spartanburg's Northside. As part of their programming, they opened with artists' spoken word that awakened thoughts about one's vulva, womb and/or pelvis. Also included was a myth-busting informational session to expose truths surrounding vulva, womb and pelvic wellness. Guest facilitator and speaker Chauncey Beaty also participated by giving a talk on pelvic health. An artwork session was included in the programming. The art session consisted of participants creating art from the prompt "what is or was your womb". This allowed the participates to leave with an awakened sense of self and understanding about their bodies.

Corey McDaniels

Corey McDaniels is a Spartanburg native, local musician, and bass guitarist of 17 years. While he's played electric bass with a variety of groups around the Carolinas in different musical disciplines, he hasn't had the opportunity to participate in Jazz and Classical music. This is because he has not been able to afford an upright or "double" bass. Even at their least expensive, the size of the instrument still makes the bass considerably more expensive than other string instruments. Corey plans to purchase the bass from a local business such as Fountain Inn based Gencarelli Bass Works to support local business. Once purchased, he plans to use the double bass in different Spartanburg and Upstate based musical groups. He intends to not only use the instrument in his own music but also to contribute towards progressing the Jazz scene in Spartanburg.

Crystal Irby

The goal of Crystal's book and multimedia project, Bible Belt Black: Ars Poetica from a Simple Girl From South Carolina, is to explore the multifaceted identities of Black women in the South. She wants to lift this community from the flat existence they have occupied in the arts and reveal their complex layers. As a Black womanist creative raising free Black children in an unfree space, it led her to explore giving birth to Black children and Black motherhood as acts of resistance. This theoretical connection has led to incorporating a deeper examination of the Black woman's body, it's relationship with America, and the southern land they occupy in her writing. While completing her manuscript, she'd like to travel throughout South Carolina during the summer of 2018 to gain a deeper understanding of the land by exploring landscapes such as plantations and visiting landmarks like an angel oak within the state. While traveling, she plans to write, photograph, and video to incorporate what she discovers in her poetry. Crystal plans to submit her book to agents and publishers in the final quarter of 2019.

Tim Giles

Tim's project, Scrappy Shakespeare, used funding for a production of Romeo & Juliet throughout two weekends of performances (8 shows in total) in public spaces in Spartanburg. Scrappy Shakespeare shows are designed to be accessible. Economically, this means they always guarantee that shows are free and open to the public. They also focus on accessibility in their aesthetic and presentation. The Scrappy Shakespeare team does not believe that audience members need a prior love or even knowledge of Shakespeare's work to enjoy their productions. This is because their performances focus on being high energy, entertaining, and immediate in the works. The company rehearses extensively to create a show that is flexible, creating the ability to respond with ease to their particular audience. This year's production of Romeo & Juliet was their most immersive and interactive. It created low demand opportunities for the audience to move beyond simply being recipients of the story and to become a part of the storytelling.

If you would like to more information or have questions about community grants, the application process, or other grant opportunities, please contact Grants Administrator Sam Veremchuck at 

To continue to fund projects that support the Spartanburg arts community, we ask that you consider supporting local artists by donating to the Chapman Cultural Center today. 

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