Local Arts

Top 8 artists from Carolinas? Here’s who Blumenthal will honor

Work in progress at the Spirit Square atrium: local artist John Hairston Jr.’s painting of Romare Bearden. Hairston, a UNCC graduate, describes his work as blending “political satire, social commentary and obscure pop-culture references.”
Work in progress at the Spirit Square atrium: local artist John Hairston Jr.’s painting of Romare Bearden. Hairston, a UNCC graduate, describes his work as blending “political satire, social commentary and obscure pop-culture references.” MARK HAMES

Who are the eight Carolinas artists who’ll be painted onto columns at Spirit Square by local artists?

Blumenthal Performing Arts got artists to paint the Knight Theater lobby’s columns for last October’s Breakin’ Convention. Those were a hit – but temporary, and Blumenthal wanted to do something similar, but more permanent. So it asked the public for nominations (and got more than 1,200) for eight Carolinas artists most worthy of honoring.

The eight winners (the local artists portraying them, beyond the first two, are still being determined):

▪ James Brown, being painted by Nick Napoletano.

▪ Romare Bearden, painted by John Hairston Jr.

▪ Maya Angelou

▪ Dizzy Gillespie

▪ Andy Griffith

▪ Earl Scruggs

▪ Nina Simone

▪ James Taylor

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