Arts

Public Art In Charlotte

May 11, 2015
Tanner Latham

Charlotte hasn’t always had an easy relationship with public art but here and in cities around the country public art is being added to make places more vibrant. These works can tell the stories of cities and neighborhoods and people while giving more local artists opportunities to participate and have their work showcased. We learn more about what’s happening here with regard to public art from some of the people making it happen.

pinkmartini.com

The band Pink Martini defies labels. The Portland-based group has an eclectic repertoire including standards from the Great American Songbook, original material with that classic feel, and songs from throughout the world, sung in their original languages.

The 12-member ensemble plays with the Charlotte Symphony Friday and Saturday nights in Belk Theater. WFAE’s Duncan McFadyen talked with Pink Martini’s lead singer, China Forbes.

If you’ve been to Gettysburg, you may have seen the Cyclorama – a massive painting that colorfully and dramatically depicts battlefield scenes including the decisive event known as Pickett’s Charge. The work on display at Gettysburg is one of four similar pieces produced in the late 1800s under the direction of French painter Paul Philippoteaux. Two of those versions have been lost – but a surviving cyclorama is in North Carolina. And, it’s for sale – all 6 tons of it.   

The sprawling painting, when assembled, is 386 feet long by 22 feet high. The cyclorama’s three current owners showed the piece to potential buyers this week. The painting was rolled out on a floor at a warehouse in Wake County. One of the owners, Billy Ray Powell, spoke this week with WFAE's Mark Rumsey.


Sarah Delia

Doing what you love and getting paid to do it—for many creative types finding that right balance can feel like an impossible challenge. For one Charlotte transplant being an artist isn’t just a hobby it’s how he makes a living. So what does it take to be a full time artist and survive? 


Sarah Delia / 90.7 WFAE

Saturday is a sort of national holiday for record collectors:  it’s Record Store Day. First held eight years ago, Record Store Day was created to boost traffic in local record stores with the release of special, limited items. The sorts of things record collectors geek out about, like different colored vinyl or reissues of obscure albums. WFAE’s resident record geeks, Marshall Terry and Sarah Delia stopped by Lunchbox Records in Charlotte to see how it’s preparing for the big day.


Charlotte Symphony

Friday and Saturday the Charlotte Symphony is trying something new. The symphony will perform its KnightSounds Series concert, A Night In New York inside the Knight Theater but also for the public outside. 

Courtesy of the Mint Museum

Art museums are usually home to oil paintings or marble sculptures. But the Mint Museum in uptown Charlotte has a new exhibit in a very different form. The ‘Body Embellishment’ show pulls a variety of body piercings, tattoos, clothing design and even nail art into one exhibit.


Meg Whalen

A new venue for the arts is popping up this week in Charlotte. Unlike most theaters or performance halls this particular space will be on the go. 

Greg Lacour

Sisters Trish Bowen and Maureen King recently spent their Friday night and Saturday morning at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center. Their 87-year-old mother had fallen and cut her head.

Sean Busher

After 20 years as president of the Levine Museum of the New South, Emily Zimmern has decided to retire. She spoke with WFAE’s Sarah Delia about her tenure at one of Charlotte’s major arts institutions. She is scheduled to retire on November 1, 2015.


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