I.P. Stanback Museum & Planetarium Reopens Featuring Works from Leo Twiggs

Thursday, October 26, 2017

ORANGEBURG, S.C. – After a two-year hiatus, the South Carolina State University I. P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium is back online. A grand reopening and dedication ceremony will be held on Thursday, Oct. 26, at 5 p.m. The unique facility is a one-of-a-kind complex that strategically combines the arts and sciences.

The grand reopening of the museum will feature the facility’s first director and renowned artist, Leo Twiggs. On Thursday, Oct. 26, at 6:30 p.m., the nationally noted artist will briefly discuss his experiences as an independent artist and professor. He will also offer commentary pertaining to works from the exhibition, “Requiem for Mother Emanuel,” which portrays the artist’s response to the tragic Charleston church shooting of 2015.

The reopening of the museum was made possible through the generosity of SC State’s class of 1962. The donation provided an opportunity to bring the facility back online for the campus and greater community engagement. Additionally, as a result of the collective efforts by the classes of 1952, 1957, 1962 and 1972, the planetarium will be enhanced with a digital 360-degree full-dome projection system to allow viewing of digital planetarium shows and other 360-degree content.

Frank Martin, interim director of the I. P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium, is excited about the reopening and the beneficial opportunities.

He said, “The I. P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium is well on its way to fully re-implementing its diverse exhibitions and community programs.”

Martin credits the university’s administration, especially President James Clark, for leading the effort to resurrect the facility.

“With the support of the university administration, spear-headed by President Clark, the museum and planetarium has devised a proactive strategy to re-introduce the local community to its services, collections and programs,” Martin continued.

The museum and planetarium were open for Clark’s official installation in March. The pre-opening event served as an opportunity to showcase the facility and its potential use. The event kick-started the effort to raise funds to support reopening the museum.

“I am grateful and appreciative to the class of 1962 for the support they provided in ensuring that SC State is operating at its optimum level. The museum and planetarium is quite the jewel and an engagement facility for campus and community use,” said Clark.

“I cannot thank alumni, Joseph Sanders and Evia Thomas, enough for leading the gift effort on behalf of the class of 1962,” Clark continued.

Sanders is also credited with donating five works from his private collection. The color lithographic prints by the late, nationally noted artist, Selma Burke of North Carolina, will be on display during the grand reopening.

Sufficient funding to sustain and develop compelling museum activities remains an on-going challenge. However, the university is confident that by carefully cultivating, and re-developing audiences through membership and program initiatives, there will be greater engagement and interaction with the local Orangeburg community, constituencies across the state of South Carolina, as well as national and international audiences.

For additional information about The I.P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium, please contact Brenda Miller at (803) 536-7174 or Davion Petty, program coordinator and manager at (803) 516-4599.