I am beginning to realize, with a great deal of surprise, that Raleigh and the Greater Triangle area is a good place for artists. Real, honest to goodness, working artists. I still have trouble seeing this area (and North Carolina as a whole) as anything other than a hick town, small, conservative, small minded. In recent years, I have come to see that it is possible to be an artist here and actually make a living. Now that might entail teaching classes on the side, but that's still art, right? For example, we have First Friday. All of the galleries and museums stay open a little later, offer wine and crackers, hire live music and Downtown Raleigh turns into a big ol' party even on the coldest of nights. First Friday is remarkably kid-friendly too!
We also have loads of local businesses that show artwork. These could be restaurants, coffee shops, you name it. We have a number of artist's collective studio spaces, like Artspace and Antfarm Studios. There was the Red Wolf Ramble, which was a collection of wolf statues all over town, painted by local artists. The NC State mascot is the wolf, for those who don't know.
We also have Art On The Move. The city art's commission and CAT choose twelve original designs by local artists to decorate the sides of twelve CAT buses for six months. I'm happy to say that two of my favorite local artists have been chosen, Anna Podris and Paul Friedrich. I know Anna has had a design on a bus previously, and would take a stab that Paul has too since he's so well known. A big congratualtions to all of the artists! I will do my best to get to Artsplosure to photograph the unveiling of the new buses on May 16th.
Art On The Move
Paul Friedrich's Etsy Shop
Anna Podris's website (I love her owls! I've only gotten to meet her once and she's fabulous!)
Keith Norval (Anna's husband. I took his printmaking class. I love this guy.)
Okay, I have to add this one too. Blue Owl, an encaustic painting by Anna. It's even more spectacular in person. I love this one with all my heart and hope someone will buy it for me someday.