Local artist Patrick Glover has a vision for the community which will challenge perceptions and hopefully spur growth in the arts.
In early 2009, the city of Concord was planning an arts related project for the empty municipal buildings in Gibson Village.
After hearing about the project, Glover and fellow artist Ross Wilbanks negotiated a lease in Gibson Village with the city to create an art studio.
"It's an interesting situation," said Glover. "Both Ross and I were primarily interested in a work space but were also hoping to establish a space that could be used collaboratively by others for performances, film screenings and exhibits."
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Glover and Wilbanks' plan was to make community involvement and collaboration an integral part of their mission for the space.
"Some of our plans in that regard include an effort to have the city locate a farmers market in the greenway that is next to the building, which would serve local residents while drawing others into the area and into our space," said Glover.
Their plans also include potluck meals where residents can meet and greet local artists.
"The plan is to have events and exhibits that are interdisciplinary and collaborative when possible, that are both welcoming and approachable but challenging," he said.
As a community artist, Glover contends that Concord is "light years ahead of Charlotte" as far as supporting the arts. He believes that Concord's art related project, which has provided affordable space for artists, has been a major boost to the artistic community.
However, he still needs room for improvement.
"(Of) course money and attendance helps, but so does informed criticism, discussions and debates," he said. "Having a larger number of knowledgeable arts patrons and fans would help to challenge at least some local artists to push themselves harder, read more, take more risks."
A natural artist, Glover, 45, began painting when he was 14 years old.
"Before then, I sort of knew that I could 'kind of' draw, but had no burning desire to make art," he said. "A strange confluence of social awkwardness, verbal ineptitude, teen angst, punk rock and Marcel Duchamp's 'Nude Descending a Staircase' led me to an interest in making things."
When he graduated from high school in 1983, Glover went to The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City. While studying at The Cooper Union, he pursued art, architecture and engineering to develop his talent.
Now Glover concentrates on oil paintings. He works in various scales but prefers to work on larger pieces. His main subject is making paintings from images of rain on a windshield.
"I felt that I needed to understand how our recognition bias, which is reinforced by standardization, affects a viewer's relationship to an object," he said. "I was looking for imagery that could be presented in a straightforward, observed way, address some of those ideas and also allow me to satisfy my desire to experiment with materials and process."
To create his works, Glover captures images from his car in the rain.
"What the camera captures is mostly a matter of chance, which is a part of what keeps the images intriguing for me," he said. "I have about a hundred potentially usable images culled from thousands that I have taken."
Glover sells his work through commercial galleries, and his work can currently be seen at the Center of the Earth Gallery in Charlotte.
Glover says the recession has been a challenge, but he has no plans of letting it get to him.
"I've been through rough economic times before," he said. "It never gets any easier. You just have to keep working."