From Friday, June 22, to Sunday, June 24, National Sculpture Society (NSS) held its 2018 conference at Brookgreen Gardens in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. The gardens were a spectacular backdrop for the events!
Friday started with the Richard McDermott Miller Modeling Competition, which featured ten sculptors modeling from life. Other conference attendees enjoyed viewing each sculptor’s modeling process, chatted with each other, and picked up a new NSS hat! There was a real sense of fellowship and fun throughout the conference. Louise Peterson then spoke in the gardens about her “Bella and the Bug.”
That Friday evening, NSS hosted a reception for “Richard McDermott Miller & His Circle,” an exhibition of 83 works by 16 artists, including Paul Resika, Barbara Grossman, John Belardo, Richard Barnet, and Janice Mauro.
Page Kiniry, president of Brookgreen Gardens; Janice Mauro, NSS fellow; and Robin R. Salmon, vice president of collections and curator of sculptor of Brookgreen Gardens, welcomed the group to the special exhibition. Richard McDermott Miller was important to both NSS and Brookgreen Gardens.
Saturday dawned, and conference goers were treated to a presentation by Robin R. Salmon on Archer and Anna Hyatt Huntington, the founders of Brookgreen Gardens. Salmon is the leading expert on the couple, who were major philanthropists and sculpture lovers. Walter Matia spoke on the history of animal sculpture, giving an entertaining lecture that lived up to its title “No, Bugatti is not a Regional Italian Pasta.” Richard Blake, Anthony Antonios, Kent Ullberg, Janice Mauro, and Gordon Alt spoke about various works that are part of Brookgreen’s collection. The day concluded with the Honors and Awards Dinner.
On Sunday, a more relaxed day, Walter Matia spoke on his “A Fool for Love,” and Carter Jones spoke on his “First Fish.” Conference goers then started their goodbyes — both to each other and to the gardens!