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Always Here

Past, Present, and Future of Catawba Art
Beaded Patch - Caitlin Rogers.jpg
Center for the Arts
121 E. Main St. Rock Hill, SC
ʔyare iswą -Woman of the River - Nicole Braswell.jpg


Oct. 13 - Nov. 18, 2023


Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023

7 PM via Zoom



Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2023
5:30 - 7:30 PM


O'Darby's Fine Wine & Spirits

Rock Hill Coca-Cola Bottling Company


Tanake niitemp. Ye katabare. Ye isware. Art is a difficult word to translate into the Catawba language. While Catawbas have always made beautiful objects and performances that we would label as art today and valued the aesthetic properties of their works and honed their skills to their preferences, it’s not clear from the linguistic record that Catawbas ever thought of their works in the way that we think of as art. 


Through a display of contemporary Catawba pottery, painting, photography, digital art, and installation art, we invite our community, neighbors, and visitors to consider Catawba aesthetic traditions and innovations. 


  • Performance of a traditional song by DeLesslin "Roo" George-Warren.

  • Catawba-made cookies and sorbet will be served.



This unique exhibit features work from Catawba artists spanning from traditional to contemporary art forms. Works of Catawba master potters are on display alongside works of contemporary potters, painters, weavers, textile artists, photographers, and digital artists. Always Here is a living demonstration of how the creative spirit of the Catawba Nation is multigenerational as well as the perseverance of the Catawba Indian Nation. They have been and will be Always Here in their home along the Catawba River.





The Catawba have been making baskets for thousands of years. They use materials native to their ancestral lands such as rivercane, and long leaf pine needles. Their use was mainly agricultural in nature. A considerable amount of time and work is put into the making of a basket. Our artists gather and prepare their materials all by hand. Colors in the past were also made by hand using natural plant dies like black walnut and yellow root. Basketry for the Catawba has seen a major revival within the last year. Through a cultural grant they’ve been able to learn how to use river cane for basket weaving and are now growing it to be harvested by tribal members.



Historically beads were used as symbols of rank and social status. Through European influence the use of beads in Catawba culture evolved into being used for trade and incorporated into their clothing. The Catawba often wove shell or glass beads, and bits of metal called tinklers into their clothing and personal belongings. It soon became a way of showing their ethnic identity. Today, beadwork has become a way to display their Native American heritage. It can most often be found on regalia, in jewelry, and seen at powwows.



Perhaps the Catawba Indian Nation’s greatest legacy is its pottery. An unbroken chain of pottery tradition and heritage has helped the Catawba revitalize their culture and become the only federally recognized Native American tribe in South Carolina. Catawba pottery is distinct in that our potters do not use pottery wheels; everything is made by hand. A variety of tools are used in the making process such as rubbing stones, elk antlers, seashells, or even a spoon! Recurring themes of nature, such as turtles, frogs and sunflowers can be seen in much of their pottery. The clay used is sourced from ancestral clay holes along the banks of the Catawba River, and when fired it gains the distinctive black and tan mottled patterns for which it is known.

listen & learn
Snake Bowl - Teresa Dunlap.jpg

Listen & Learn

Join Catawba Nation's Artist Development Specialist, Joanna Henry, and Arts Council of York County's Gallery Manager, Devann Gardner, as they discuss the current display of Catawba Art in the Dalton Gallery at the Center for the Arts.



7 PM

Online via Zoom


Free, registration required



Children's Fall Art Show

works by Rock Hill School District 3's 4K - 5th Grade Students

October 20 - November 18
, 2023
RECEPTION | Thursday, November 9, 2023 | 5:30 - 6:30 PM​


Website |

Instagram |


The Arts Council is pleased to host the Children’s Fall Art Show in the Edmund D. Lewandowski Classroom Gallery. Works created by children in grades 4K – 5 attending Rock Hill elementary schools comprise this exhibit.


Ebenezer Avenue Elementary School

Ebinport Elementary School

Independence Elementary School

India Hook Elementary School

Lesslie Elementary School

Mount Gallant Elementary School

Mount Holly Elementary School

Northside Elementary School of the Arts

Oakdale Elementary School

Old Pointe Elementary School

Richmond Drive Elementary School

Sunset Park Center for Accelerated Studies

York Road Elementary School


For private viewings, call
(803) 328-2787

For inquiries, contact:
Devann Gardner
Gallery Manager

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