For the next several weeks, the public can view the proposed artwork for the Charlotte Area Transit System LYNX Blue Line extension at an exhibit hosted by UNC Charlotte.
The exhibit features the work of 16 artists who competed in 2009 to be selected for art on the 11 stations, walls and bridges, elevators, bike facilities, and parking lots along the 9-mile stretch. The extension will begin at Ninth Street next to UNCC Center City, continue through the North Davidson Street Arts District and end at the UNCC campus.
Blue Line construction is to begin in late 2013, with a budget for artwork of $4.9 million. The line is to open in 2017.
Works by eight local artists are in the exhibition: Susan Brenner, Chandra Cox, Sharon Dowell, Daren Goins, Ruth Ava Lyons, Paul Sires, Shaun Cassidy and Tom Stanley.
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Gallery visitors are greeted by 12 cylinder murals, each 3 feet wide and 12 feet high, the proportions of the footings found along CATS platforms. Five large posters depict work, and one entire wall is dedicated to an aerial view of the Blue Line. Visitors can leave comments on pieces of paper mounted on a wall.
The multicolored murals show artists and their proposed concepts. Cassidy, a Winthrop University associate professor of fine arts, depicts glass windscreens for the McCullough station on one mural that evokes a feeling of movement.
One of the most colorful posters, with shocks of yellow, green and blues overlaid on bare tree branches, highlights an abstract design by Brenner, a UNCC faculty member. Her focus is on the branch structure of trees.
The process she employs in creating the work is similar to her paintings and print work. The artwork is proposed for elevator and stairway structures.
UNCC Director of Galleries Crista Cammaroto said she approached CATS with the idea of hosting the exhibition at Storrs Gallery at the College of Arts & Architecture.
“Having this exhibit showcased on campus for our students and the public is a great way to engage in dialog about public art,” Cammaroto said.
Neil Edwards, a second-year architecture student, was one of the first gallery visitors Monday morning.
“I’m a bit surprised by what’s here,” Edwards said. “It is impressive that the proposed public art is on display, because like architecture, it has place, movement and circulation.”