BOOM is excited to host a unique artistic event showcasing a group of multidisciplinary, local artists who are making some of the most visually stimulating, thought-provoking, and challenging contemporary works coming out of this region. These artists, who are all within an arm’s reach of Charlotte, have been brought together to demonstrate the idea that access to the arts and culture is within our reach, and often, right in our own backyard.
Two of our artists will be painting LIVE during the day and you can purchase any of the work you see.
We’ll have live music playing on stage by bluegrass, hip hop, jazz and Spanish guitar performers. Outside will be food trucks and a mobile art gallery by Urban Züe.
Grab a bite, shop for art and listen to live music while relaxing in our Hue + Shade Lounge!
Showing at: International House
Saturday, April 29
Noon – 5:00pm
Admission is FREE
Featured artists will include local heroes like DAMMITWESLEY and narly, who will be creating live permeant murals at the International House during the pop up exhibition; Nico Amortegui, who was commissioned to create this year’s BOOM festival overall design; magical Plaza Midwood native, James Jeffries will be demonstrating his multimedia practice that involves painting, sculpture, pyrotechnics, and culinary art; UNCC and McColl Center alum Nathaniel Lancaster, will share some of his new work that grapples with the absurdity of everyday life; current UNCC student, LaDara McKinnon will be present to share and sell some of her sculptural, textured, and asymmetrical ceramic works; multimedia muralist Alex Delarge will share some of his smaller, two-dimensional works that still include his signature hand-style; JAIANNA and DJ Fannie Mae will be selling some of their new print works celebrating Black identity and Black love; Art Director by day and painter by night, Brandon Willet, will be selling some of his larger paintings; and USC student Brennan Booker will be sharing some of his BFA thesis photography work.
The Hue+ Shade Lounge was created by Jessica Moss: artist, entrepreneur and Creative Director of the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture in Charlotte, NC. She worked with the StoryCorps Story Share Booth project, Redmoon Theatre’s Fundraising ‘Spectacle Lunatique’, and artist Mel Chin’s national FUNDRED Dollar Bill Project. Jessica has worked for a diverse group of organizations including The National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC, Dreamworks Animation in Glendale CA, and Rebuild Foundation in Chicago, IL. Her interests in innovation, collaboration and the arts continue to influence her projects today.
Alex Delarge / @axdlrg
"Street art – because it’s not your name – can belong to everyone. There’s no ego, people can participate, it becomes a part of the community experience. Painting anything is better than a 9 to 5. Even if it’s some simple signage, I’m happiest with a paint brush or paint can in my hand."
"A Designer and illustrator by trade I am the Art Director for the digital ad agency MyJive. By night, I’ve fearlessly directed creative for both America XL and Thundercolor and managed / curated for AKA Creative all comfortably nestled in Charlotte, NC - where I hang my hat with my incredibly tolerant wife and four exuberant children."
Brennan Booker is a photographer focusing on family ties, relationships, and familial traditions. His work is also deeply informed by his experience growing up in the United States Army. He is in his third year studying photography at the University of South Carolina. He currently lives and works in Columbia, South Carolina.
Dammit Wesley is a live painter and graphic designer. Combining illustrative and traditional styles, he creates large acrylic paintings featuring memorable pop icons and cultural references. Not one to take himself too seriously, Dammit Wesley uses a bright color palette and dark subject matter to create a sometimes comical and uncomfortable juxtaposition of aesthetics and an underlying message.
"Art saved my life."
James Jeffries is a native of Plaza Midwood. A first generation Charlottean bent on creatively elevating his city to the world stage, James channels elemental forces into his work. Naturally synaesthetic, his creativity bounds through his work in painting, sculpture, pyrotechnics, and culinary art.
Jaianna was born in Queens, New York City, but considers herself as a true Charlotte artist. Along with her lifework as a painter and photographer, she enjoys her time with high school students as an art teacher at North Mecklenburg High School. Jaianna believes that "You are born to be who you are meant to be, so live your dreams."
LaDara McKinnon is a published multimedia artist focusing in ceramics and painting. LaDara enjoys working with many materials such as acrylic paint, clay, and plaster. Her love for art began growing up in Japan and Hawaii. In her work, she abstractly explores social issues and mental illness concepts regarding the body from microscopic to macroscopic views.
narly, a pseudonym for Nalee, is an artist, designer, and educator native to Charlotte. She dedicates her craft and creativity in helping to not just grow and nurture the local art scene, but to increase awareness within the community that local art exists. Her signature hand lettered pieces promoting positivity and curiosity can be found scattered around Charlotte as part of the #freeartCLT initiative.
Nathaniel Lancaster is a North Carolina native and earned his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Much of his work is a ponderance of what is capable of happening in the absurdity of everyday life, while at the same time engaging with the modernist proposition of concern over the surface. He is always trying to reconcile these disparate notions. He is an alumni of the McColl Center for Art and Innovation and has had his work featured in various locales, such as the illustrious walls of friends homes, and the North Carolina Museum of Art. He currently has too many jobs.
"In the beginning, I wanted to depict the constantly changing direction of my home country (Colombia) as the imagery of my patria was (is) always with me. Today, I paint out of necessity. As an immigrant to the US in the late 90s, I became starkly aware of the transaction between two 'allied' countries and my encounters in this place we had always referred to as the 'American Dream.' Throughout my art practice, I enjoy illustrating snapshots of a peripatetic lifestyle - one that was focused on survival of the time - my own (as an immigrant) and of those I encountered along the way. Creating portraits of others who have defied the odds and/or were infamous or honorable in one lifetime can take over my canvasses as well." Nico created the signature art for this year's BOOM. Be sure to buy a BOOM poster at the festival.
Special thanks to Jessica Moss for curating and organizing this event.