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"Hip Hop: The Last Total Art Movement"

SPHERE: ART HISTORY SERIES presents "Hip Hop: The Last Total Art Movement" with Mike Wirth + Kia O. Moore

LOCATION: Snug Harbor, 1228 Gordon St, Charlotte, NC 28205

Designer and educator, Mike Wirth, and author and nonprofit leader, Kia O. Moore, are both some of Charlotte’s most accessible and knowledgeable Hip Hop aficionados. Their interests and curiosities led them both to Hip hop, a culture that continues to influence their lives and practices today.

"Hip Hop: The Last Total Art Movement" will examine the genre and cultural movement developed in the United States by African Americans in the 1970s. Generally, Hip hop culture is defined by four key stylistic elements: MCing/rapping, DJing/scratching with turntables, breakdancing and graffiti writing. With its roots embedded in the late 20th century, the Hip hop of today continues to grow and evolve. It’s more than a global phenomena; it has become a shared, multi-generational language of both personal and communal expression. Anyone, anywhere and at anytime can participate and join in the movement.


On Monday, October 16th at Snug Harbor in Plaza Midwood, join us for The Sphere Series kick-off event, "Hip Hop: The Last Total Art Movement". Wirth and Moore will guide participants through the elemental history and the ‘Hip-hop Method’, local Djs will teach tips on the ones-and-twos, a few of Charlotte’s most live dancers will be breaking it down on the cardboard. Come dance with us, freestyle in a cypher and swap stories about Charlotte’s early Hip Hop roots.

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Mike Wirth is the Director of the Department of Art & Design at Queens University of Charlotte, an award winning designer, and an exhibiting artist/muralist. As a true armchair hip-hop historian, Wirth’s connection to Hip hop begins in New York City and Long Island of the 1980s and 90s. Contrary to his parents wishes, Wirth was a first-hand consumer of rap music, graffiti and breakdancing as a child. As a young aspiring artist, the movement was accessible, inclusive, familiar and embracing to so many youth like Wirth. As a child, he found deep inspiration riding the intricately scrawled subway cars; frequented the PopShop!, a New York city store that was devoted to the work of graffiti artist and activist Keith Haring; and would obsess over his stolen library copy of Martha Cooper & Henry Chalfant’s Subway Art, the 1984 photographic ‘bible’ of street art. The passion and love for this art and cultural movement continues to shape Wirth’s creative philosophies and methods of today.



Kia O. Moore has an innate need to create harmony and understanding between people. Hip Hop culture is the vehicle she uses to help to create this harmony. Moore serves as the Creative Director of Hip Hop University, a nonprofit focused on uplifting young scholars and their communities through Hip hop culture and mentorship. Her work with Hip Hop University led her to launch her own arts organization. Hip Hop Orchestrated blends Hip hop and Orchestral music to foster conversations between people of various backgrounds through shared musical experiences. Moore has been awarded two Knight Foundation supported fellowships, Emerging City Champions and National Art Strategies. Moore holds a B.A. in Communication Studies with a certificate in International Public Relations and a minor in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Now with her life's work aligning with her inner "WHY," she is working toward becoming the change she wants to see in the world.