During the year, the Coastal Discovery Museum hosts between 6 and 8 temporary exhibits in the Discovery House’s Temporary Exhibit Gallery. The exhibits vary in theme and subject matter related to Lowcountry history, natural history and art. Visiting the Coastal Discovery Museum’s exhibitions will introduce you to the many facets of Hilton Head Island.

Depending upon the exhibition, there are often demonstrations, talks and workshops offered during the year. Some artists will paint in the gallery or ‘plein air’ on site during their show while others will present workshops about how to take nature photographs. For our younger visitors, several of the exhibitions feature ‘scavenger hunts’ or other activities.

Many exhibitions have ‘artist coffees,’ demonstrations or classes offered during their installation. Here you can meet the many of the exhibiting artists at gallery walks and coffees. It is a great opportunity to get to know the artists, their methods and vision for their works.

Please contact the Museum or check the event calendar for more information.


Escape Artists – Presented by The Art Beyond Tradition Group

September 2 – October 29 (Reception October 5th  – 5 – 7 PM)

The 12 artists of the ART BEYOND TRADITION group, which has been exhibiting here since 2006 will present their biennial exhibit of abstract art — art that grows out of the best art traditions of both western and eastern art, but which aims at pushing boundaries of the expected in unique ways.

This year the exhibit, entitled “Escape Artists,” will open September 2nd in the beautiful gallery at the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn, 70 Honey Horn Drive, Hilton Head Island.  Exhibiting in a range of media — painting, collage, encaustic, sculpture, mixed media, and ink, the 12 recognized regional artists in the group are Earline Allen, Cindy Chiappetta, Margaret Crawford, Jo Dye, Vickie Jourdan, Mark Larkin, Mary Lester, Sharon Collings Licata, Lynne Riding, Mary Sullivan, Donna Varner, and Arla Crumlick Wible.

A Reception with refreshments will be held Thursday, October 5th, from 5 – 7 pm.  The exhibit will last until October 29, 2017. Artists will also be on hand every Thursday (9/7, 9/14, 9/21, 9/28, 10/5, 10/12, 10/19, 10/26) between noon and 2 pm to chat about the work and help viewers with questions about any of the artists.  Gallery hours every day are Monday through Saturday 9 – 4:30 and Sunday 11 – 3.

Mark your calendar so you will not miss this exceptional visual journey — a golden opportunity to experience something new, to be puzzled, charmed, delighted, soothed; to be invited into the mysterious realm of the power  of  line,  color,  form,  texture,  and to experience  a body of work of not just one abstract artist but that of 12 top-notch explorers.  And they are explorers — and experimenters — seeking to transform our vision, to uplift, to inspire, to engage us in a participative endeavor. This is art which calls for involvement and which cannot be absorbed in a single glance.  Get up close.  Move back.  Pay attention to where your eye travels and to your feelings.  Ask questions of the artists.  Share your reactions.  The artists are excited to show their latest work.  Come, be excited with them.


Pirates, Privateers, and Buccaneers

November 2017 – February 2018

Pirates, Privateers and Buccaneers the South Carolina State Museum’s traveling exhibit will make patrons avast (that’s stop in pirate lingo) and gasp as the world of pirates comes alive in, opening in early November.

The story of Blackbeard, who blockaded Charleston Harbor in 1718 prior to his death in North Carolina can be found in this traveling exhibit, along with the stories of many other pirates.

The exhibit will thrill those who have always been fascinated by these desperadoes of the seas and dispel a number of popular myths about pirates, such as that they made their victims walk the plank, and used phrases such as ‘arrr,’ and ‘matey,’ which are fictions of Hollywood. Find out more about the problem of modern piracy dispelling another popular myth that pirates disappeared a long time ago.

This exhibit was developed by the South Carolina State Museum with research, collaboration, and assistance from the North Carolina Museum of History, the Queen Anne’s Revenge Project of the North Carolina Office of State Archaeology, and the North Carolina Maritime Museum. Pirates, Privateers, and Buccaneers of the Carolinas is a part of the South Carolina State Museum’s Traveling Exhibitions Program.