7:00 – 8:00 PM: Panel & Discussion
UNCC Center City Building, lecture hall
320 E 9th St, Charlotte, NC 28202
8:00 – 9:00 PM: Reception
Projective Eye Gallery, UNCC Center City Building
RSVP for free parking: https://coaa.uncc.edu/calendar/panel-reception-why-are-walls-talking
Moderator Adam Justice, UNC Charlotte’s Director of Galleries, will lead a panel discussion with four muralists from our Charlotte community – Garden of Journey, Dammit Wesley and Arko & Owl. Sponsors UNC Charlotte and Sphere Series are hosting this event as a programming kick-off to the much anticipated Talking Walls Mural Festival October 10th-13th, organized by Southern Tiger Collective.
Talking Walls offers the community an opportunity to consider unique ways mural and graffiti artists convert public space into creative enterprises, as well as the evolving definition of what art is. What used to be dismissed as disposable street art is now considered legitimate artwork. The panel will debate how this changes the way we contemplate graffiti and murals and how it changes the expectation for the artists. How does the ephemeral nature of the medium undermine any long-term attempt to institutionalize it?
More importantly, mural art offers another view of our constantly evolving visual culture. How do artists use visual language to communicate in non-institutional settings? How do they construct an image to reach a broad, diverse public that changes dynamically and organically? How does their artwork on the street impact, enhance and or bring together communities? Do mural festivals, and an infusion of public art, do more than just beautify cities?
The panel discussion will be followed by a reception in the Projective Eye Gallery for the gallery’s newest exhibition Talking Walls: Obso & Dammit Wesley.
ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:
Garden of Journey — Georgie Nakima is a multidisciplinary artist based out of Charlotte, NC. After honing in on her artistry at Northwest School of the Arts, she attended Winston-Salem State University with intention to explore the natural world. Her studies in Life Sciences have fueled her insight in environment preservation and philosophy, and transcends through her work’s subject matter. Georgie’s work pays homage to the African and Indigenous diaspora while highlighting nature and biodiversity. She casts a heroic vibe to her subjects that represents the resilience and triumph that builds into the essence of women, people of color, and wildlife. Her aim is to use public art as a platform to collaborate with the community while also fusing techniques in art therapy. @gardenofjourney
Dammit Wesley — Dammit Wesley a.k.a Kim Jong Ill, the self proclaimed North Korea of Charlotte is a multi-disciplinary artist who uses a variety mediums to create large scale works that dissect themes of Race and American Consumerism. The Black Tyler Durden can be located at his studio BLK MKT in historic Camp North End. @dammit_wesley / @blkmrktclt
Arko & Owl — Owl was born in Bogota, Colombia where she spent a lot of her time in the families print warehouse. She immigrated to the U.S. in 2001 and spent time working in her parents print shop through her teens. This constant exposure led to her current interest in printmaking and abstraction. She began developing the complexity of her ecosystems and currently applies her love for abstraction to her drawings, body painting, murals, and screen-printing projects. She currently makes her home in Charlotte, NC with her husband who is also an artist and often collaborates with him. Arko was born in Charlotte, the child of an American and Colombian. Arko has been painting and drawing since childhood. He graduated from UNCG in 2005 with a BFA with concentrations in design and sculpture. Personal conflict and a serious look at life choices in 2013 spawned the creation of Arko as he now known. Wanting to spread a message of hope and positivity, as well as cultivate an appreciation of street art in his community, he began dropping free works of art in public locations around the city. Using social media, Arko participates in a game of hide and seek with Instagram followers to get them to explore their own city. He aims to promote positivity, street art, murals, graffiti, and art culture wherever they paint. @owl.clt / @arko83art