Announcement of artist commissioned to paint official city portrait of long-serving Clerk of Council Vanessa Turner Maybank

March 30, 2023

Please join Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg and Councilmember Keith Waring as they announce the artist who has been commissioned to paint the official city portrait of Vanessa Turner Maybank, the City of Charleston’s first Director of Tourism Management and the city’s first African American Clerk of Council. The announcement will take place at 11 a.m., Friday, March 31, 2023 in City Hall Council Chamber, located at 80 Broad Street.

A devoted member of Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Ms. Maybank has dedicated her life to uplifting others. She has served on numerous boards and commissions, including the National Trust for Historic Preservation, South Carolina African American Heritage Commission, the Historic Charleston Foundation and the Drayton Hall Property Council. Her contributions have helped make Charleston, and the State of South Carolina, a better place to live.

When completed, Ms. Maybank’s portrait will be only the third portrait of a woman and the second portrait of an African American woman to be displayed in City Hall’s Council Chamber.

Citizens who would like to contribute to the portrait fund can mail a check made out to “Maybank Portrait Fund, c/o Capers G. Barr, III” to 11 Broad Street, Charleston, SC  29401 or to P.O. Box 1037, Charleston, SC 29402.

Painting the historic portrait is Charles Edward Williams, a contemporary visual artist from South Carolina. He holds a BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in Georgia and an MFA from the University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG). Williams has attended summer artist residencies at Otis College of Art and Design (CA), SOMA (Mexico City, Mexico), the Gibbes Museum (SC), and the McColl Center for Art + Innovation (NC). Solo traveling exhibitions include “Sun + Light,” “Warm Water,” and “Swim.” “Sun + Light” has been on view at Polk Museum of Art (FL), Gibbes Museum of Art (SC), and Residency Art gallery (LA). “Warm Water” has been on view at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (MI), SECCA (NC), and Weber State University (UT). “Swim” was displayed at Morton Fine Art (DC). His work was also recently exhibited at Aqua and Scope Art Fair / Art Basel (FL) and Texas Contemporary Art Fair (TX). Group exhibitions have included the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art (CT), David C. Driskell Center of the University of Maryland (MD), Kunstraum Potsdam (Berlin, Germany), Weatherspoon Museum (NC), Barnes Foundation & Rush Arts Foundation (PA), and other domestic institutions. Works have been reviewed in local and national publications and media, including the Washington Post, NPR, and South Carolina’s ETV network (PBS affiliate). During Williams’ ongoing residency at Pike School of Art (MS), he created the project FORWARD, which the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Ruth Foundation for the Arts partly supported.

Permanent collections include the North Carolina Museum of Art (NC), the Gibbes Museum (SC), Georgia Museum of Art (GA), Knoxville Museum of Art (TN), Delaware Art Museum (DE), Mississippi Museum of Art (MS), Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University (NC), and the Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African American Art (NJ). Williams also received the Riley Institute Diversity Leadership Award from the State of South Carolina for developing enriching art programs within local communities.

To learn more about the artist, visit and