Community Arts & Culture

2017 Cultural Fabric

17_Com-TeensCenter-Classroom-27In conjunction with a creative and vibrant group of Chapel Hill youth from The Corner Teen Center, a team of artists, college student interns, educators, social workers and community workers presented a multimedia portrait exhibition in the Michael & Laura Community Outreach Gallery of the FRANK artists collective in the spring of 2017.

Four of these collaborators grew up in Chapel Hill and attended Chapel Hill High School during the desegregation era. Project Director and Mixed Media Artist Hollie Taylor received funding for a Community Art Project from The Town of Chapel Hill and teamed up with artist collaborator friends and colleagues from Chapel Hill High School, Ida Lavern-Couch with the African American Quilt Circle, and Barbara Tyroler with the FRANK gallery. Susan (Prothro) Worley, Director of Volunteers for Youth coordinated the partnership with the Teen Center and sponsored the reception for family and friends where teen participants and staff spoke about their experiences.

The Corner Teen Center staff and volunteer participants included director Samathryn Witham, program assistant Jamie Sisk, and UNC Bonner Leaders Mateo Carvalho, and Sarah Henderson.

The mixed media portraits exhibited were created during a 10-week Into the Streets art curriculum with middle school students attending The Corner Teen Center afterschool program. After receiving an introductory quilt workshop with Ida Lavern-Couch, the teens began creating fabric designs and banners.  With photographer Barbara Tyroler, the teens used iPhones and a professional studio light to produce a series of photographic portraits, self and peer, for discussion and feedback. Collaborating with Barbara they created professional portraiture/self-portraits and then chose the images that best reflected their public and private identities. Students then worked with project director Hollie Taylor and Teen Center staff to reflect and produce words to accompany their chosen portraits. The photographs were printed on fabric at Durham’s Spoonflower and fabric frames were assembled together with the teens from their initial designs.

A big part of their exploration of identity was the opportunity for the teens to share the work and these experiences with their friends, family, and community at a special closing reception on May 27, 2017.

The Mission of the Franklin Street Arts Collective is to support the local arts community and promote a vibrant downtown Chapel Hill through exhibits, events, programs, and educational outreach through FRANK Gallery.

The FRANK Gallery Community Outreach Program provides innovative and inclusive art related events, forming partnerships between a diverse population of artists and our community. FRANK strives to provide a stimulating, inclusive, and accessible resource in Orange County and the Triangle. FRANK's programs are designed to serve as a catalyst for sharing ideas and inspiration, forming partnerships using art as a medium for communication and community-building.

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