10 Best Art Museums In Charleston, South Carolina

art museums in charleston
Contributing Writer
| 4 min read

In every part of Charleston, South Carolina, creativity is always a key factor. Somehow, every narrative of this place is imbued with art, making it connected to every part of Charleston’s historical past. Its preservation efforts are also very prominent, that is why a lot of artworks and artifacts can be found in the galleries and museums surrounding Charleston. In recent years, the art scene in Charleston has greatly expanded, to the point that it has its own gallery district. It’s time to explore the underrated yet rich art scene by taking a look at the best art museums in Charleston, South Carolina!

1. Gibbes Museum of Art

Source: Photo by user MCG Photography used under CC BY-SA 4.0

The Gibbes Museum of Art is a quintessential place in Charleston because it hosts American art that represents most of the city’s historical background. The museum aims to connect Charleston’s artistic past to the contemporary, to ensure that the museum is also in the know. Another important role that Gibbes Museum aims to project, is to engage Charleston locals to absorb and experience art that is of quality and allows space for discovery and enjoyment.

Gibbes Museum of Art

Address: 135 Meeting St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA

Website: Gibbes Museum of Art

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 10am - 5pm; Sun: 1pm - 5pm

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2. The Charleston Museum

Charleston Museum
Source: Photo by user ProfReader used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Established in 1773, The Charleston Museum is the first museum in America. It’s home to numerous collections that promote local history. Some displays even include skeletons of birds, small and large animals, along with other specimens. The Charleston Museum is also known for its collection that exhibits the historical evolution of South Carolina and Charleston, that zooms in to the revolutionary war and the civil war. A visit here is a promise to enhance knowledge and enlighten.

The Charleston Museum

Address: 360 Meeting St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA

Website: The Charleston Museum

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 9am - 5pm; Sun: 12pm - 5pm

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3. Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston

Halsey Institute
Source: Photo by user [Unknown] used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Looking for art that will challenge you? Head to Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art! Established in 1983, this gallery was named after Mr. William Halsey, an established artist whose works were exhibited at prestigious museums such as Museum of Modern Art, and Art Institute of Chicago. He became a studio art instructor at the College of Charleston and worked there for 20 years. When he retired, an art gallery was named after him to honor his excellence and contribution to the art scene in Charleston. See contemporary art by emerging artists every year at this lovely museum!

Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston

Address: 161 Calhoun St, Charleston, SC 29424, USA

Website: Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston

Opening hours: Mon - Wed, Fri - Sat: 11am - 4pm; Thu: 11am - 7pm (closed on Sun)

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4. Atrium Art Gallery

Situated at the heart of downtown Charleston, Atrium Art Gallery is a champion of local and contemporary art. This gallery continuously aims to veer away from conventional art, and often hold exhibits that cater to modern times. Expect to be in awe with abstract art, black and white photography, and a lot of eye-catching paintings. There are also numerous prints on exhibit, that are all worth checking out.

Atrium Art Gallery

Address: 61 Queen St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA

Website: Atrium Art Gallery

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 10am - 5pm; Fri - Sat: 10am - 6pm (closed on Sun)

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5. Corrigan Gallery LLC

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

One of the newest galleries in Charleston is Corrigan Gallery LLC. It opened its doors to the public in 2005 and is located near the French Quarter. It is a proud host to artwork that is an amalgamation of old Charleston, with a touch of the contemporary. In 2017, Corrigan Gallery moved to a new location along Broad Street, which added a garden surrounding the gallery. Some of the artists featured here are Beverly Derrick, Else Corrigan, and Lynne Riding.

Corrigan Gallery LLC

Address: 7 Broad St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA

Website: Corrigan Gallery LLC

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 5pm; Mon: 11am - 5pm (closed on Sun)

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6. Robert Lange Studios

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Get quirky with art at Robert Lange Studios. It’s an amazing space filled with diverse pieces that center on hyperrealism, surrealist narrative works, and classical landscape paintings. It’s a space that welcomes anything from casual to serious, and stays true to the motto that “art belongs to everyone.” Robert Lange Studios was voted the best art gallery in Charleston by the Charleston City Paper and has captured the hearts of art lovers since.

Robert Lange Studios

Address: 2 Queen St, Charleston, SC 29401

Website: Robert Lange Studios

Opening hours: 11am - 5pm (daily)

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7. Mary Martin Gallery

Welcoming art of all genres is Mary Martin Gallery. They call themselves an eclectic gallery that does not limit themselves to only one style of work. They’re one of the best in Charleston to represent contemporary artists, and even mentor them for national recognition. Some artists that have had exhibits here are Jean-Claude Gaugy, Jim Green, Goli Mahallati, and Judy Fuller. Visit Mary Martin to see paintings, sculptures, and even jewelry and furniture! You are surely in for a treat at this beautiful art gallery.

Mary Martin Gallery

Address: 103 Broad Street, Charleston, SC 29401

Website: Mary Martin Gallery

Opening hours: Sun - Wed: 10am - 6pm; Thu - Sat: 10am - 8pm

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8. Principle Gallery Charleston

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Principle Gallery Charleston Art Services is traveling NORTH ! In case you haven’t heard, in August we began offering...

Posted by Principle Gallery Charleston on Monday, November 16, 2020

At Principle Gallery in Charleston, expect artworks that center on the contemporary, classical realism, and a good roster of American international artists. All works that are exhibited at the gallery are diverse and feature fresh artists. It’s always a treat to spend time to view art here because they also boast a beautifully lit space, which elevates the whole vibe. If you have any questions regarding the artworks displayed, feel free to ask the staff, because they’re very accommodating.

Principle Gallery Charleston

Address: 125 Meeting St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA

Website: Principle Gallery Charleston

Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 10am - 6pm, Thu - Sat: 10am - 10pm, Sun: 11am - 6pm

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9. Charleston Artist Guild Gallery

Headed and managed by a family of artists, Charleston Artist Guild Gallery is an open invitation to be a part of their family. They run the gallery in the spirit of southern hospitality and all art lovers that come to visit share a common goal. Experience fun and excitement with art as you navigate through multiple talented artists who are featured at the gallery. It’s also a unique experience because, as you view art, music is played all throughout the gallery enhancing the overall experience.

Charleston Artist Guild Gallery

Address: 160 E Bay St #102, Charleston, SC 29401, United States

Website: Charleston Artist Guild Gallery

Opening hours: 11am – 6pm (daily)

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10. Miller Gallery, Charleston

Proudly run by women is Miller Gallery. Most of the artworks featured here are by local and international artists, both by emerging and mid-career artists that work across multiple mediums. Aside from exhibiting wonderful pieces of art, Miller Gallery also offers art services such as art advisory, corporate art loan programs, and many more. Celebrate this women-lead gallery as you enjoy multiple pieces of contemporary art!

Miller Gallery, Charleston

Address: 149 ½ E Bay St, Charleston, SC 2940, USA

Website: Miller Gallery

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 10am - 6pm; Sun: 11am - 5pm

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Art is life

Make your next vacation art-filled by heading to Charleston, South Carolina’s top galleries and museums! You don’t even have to be an artist yourself to truly appreciate the works that are featured in the attractions. There are so many to see and learn from, just by looking at beautiful pieces of art, and who knows, you might even discover more about yourself when you immerse yourself in art.

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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