Read about important Crossroads Charlotte events, information and activities.
“A little bit off the beaten path” is the way Director of Galleries Crista Cammaroto describes the location of UNC Charlotte Center City's Projective Eye Gallery but she could have just as easily been describing the art inside.
The gallery housed in this strikingly modern building located at 9th and Brevard streets is dedicated to presenting interdisciplinary and multimedia works – including digital art, sound space installation, and video – created by nationally and locally known artists. On Sat, June 2 the College of Arts + Architecture of UNC Charlotte invited kids and their families to explore the latest exhibition, “Concurrent Rhythms,” and create their own artwork at a special event called “Art in the House.”
“We're a gallery that geared up when a lot of the galleries were closing uptown,” says Cammaroto. She has been eager to find ways to connect with the community through outreach events since assuming her position at the helm of UNCC's gallery system last July. While opening nights have been popular “happenings” with music, art, and food, she wanted to find other ways during the run of a show to engage people with the art.
- N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue is urging voters to shoot down Amendment One, the proposal that would ban LGBT marriage and legal recognition for all unmarried couples and strip protections and benefits from families. Perdue, speaking at a women’s conference at UNC-Charlotte last week, announced her opposition to the May 8 referendum that would amend the state constitution. Perdue, a Democrat, is not running for re-election.
- Meanwhile, the City of Charlotte is considering offering benefits to same-sex partners of its employees, City Manager Curt Walton said during a budget meeting last week. Walton said the city is studying the issue, and expects it would cost $150,000 annually. The city spends about $40 million on health benefits a year. Mayor Anthony Foxx, a Democrat, said he’ll support the change.
- The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utility Department says it needs to raise water and sewer rates by about 6 percent for the average customer to keep up with rising gas and electricity prices. Residential customers who use large amounts of water for irrigation will see a rate hike of 9 percent. A CMUD official says revenues from rates aren't keeping up with costs.
- A record crowd turned out on the first day of “Rise Above,” the exhibit about the Tuskegee Airmen, which features a P-51 Mustang like the ones flown by the famed African-American World War II flying unit. More than 500 people attended the exhibition Wednesday, Carolinas Aviation Museum officials said. It was the largest one-day attendance for any exhibit in the museum’s history. The program ran through Saturday.
- Charlotte’s Mint Museum plans to launch a research center based on North Carolina pottery as part of a major renovation of its Randolph Road campus. With 2,200 objects, some dating to the 1700s, the Mint has the largest and most comprehensive collection of North Carolina pottery in the nation. Mint officials says the pottery research center would underscore the state’s already high profile in the world of ceramics.
The public voted this month, and Crossroads Charlotte is excited to announce the latest round of winners for A.C.T. (Achieving Community Today) Projects. A.C.T. Projects are designed to fund small initiatives that will connect people across lines of difference. Members of the community submit ideas, and the public decides which will get funding by voting on Facebook. The winners receive up to $500 to implement their projects. This cycle there were three winning projects:
Winner #1: 10 Artists in 5 Days: A View of Charlotte Through the Arts by Aisha Alexander
This will be an innovative way to allow people to see the world through the eyes of another. People will be able to learn what’s special, but also what is universal in their identity, relationships and communities. During 5 “pop-up” conversations, with diverse audiences, attendees will all be asked: “What makes you, you?” and "What makes Charlotte, Charlotte?”. At each event, 2 local artists will paint a visual of the stories – live. At each event people will be exposed to diverse opinions and given a visual of the stories.
Winner #2: Graham Heights Spring Festival by Joe Howarth
The Spring Festival will be a cookout, organized by Graham Heights residents partnered with UNCC students. The event will be a venue so that Graham Heights residents and families can meet each other and enjoy fellowship in an informal environment over great food.
Winner #3: Projective Eye - Art in the House by Crista Cammoroto
Art-in-the-House would offer hands-on artistic experiences such as painting, drawing, screen-printing, dance and music facilitated by faculty and staff of the College of Arts and Architecture at UNC Charlotte. Faculty will guide participants through the process of creating a piece of art, learning a dance, or playing a musical instrument or composition. Participants will then get to produce a piece of their own!
Congratulations to all of our winners! This is the final round of A.C.T. Projects. Since the first cycle of awards was given in December 2010, Crossroads Charlotte A.C.T. (Achieving Community Today) Projects have enabled 19 individuals to make a difference in their communities by funding their ideas.
Here are stories that caught our eye recently...
In the past two years, nearly 70 homeless families in Charlotte have been able to leave overcrowded shelters and step into fully furnished homes, courtesy of a partnership of nonprofits and government agencies. Much of the credit goes to a volunteer group of 75 women from St. Gabriel and St. Matthew Catholic churches.
The Democratic National Convention announced that it plans to spend at least one-third of its money with businesses owned by minorities, women, veterans, people with disabilities and members of the gay community. The efforts include an online vendor directory to help local businesses land work during the DNC.
The Critical Need Response Fund began as a one-winter-only effort to help charities swamped by needy people. But it’s burgeoned into its fourth year, raising money for nonprofits that provide food, clothing shelter and warmth. The United Way, which took over the program in 2010, predicts this year's campaign will raise $100,000 to $300,000 for those in need.
Voices of Love is one of many gospel choirs in the Charlotte region. But what makes this choir unusual is that most of its members are homeless. A core group practices each week at Charlotte’s Urban Ministry Center.
Tim Alden Grant, Emilia Fuentes Grant, Adam Hobbs, and a whole cast of other locals, produced the Bad Romance: Women’s Suffrage video for Soomo Publishing. The video, which premiered recently to coincide with National Women’s Day, pays homage to Alice Paul and the generations of brave women who joined together in the fight to pass the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote in 1920.
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