5 local artists you should know, and where to catch their work

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Charlotte, NC artists HNin Nie is a newcomer making a big splash on the art scene with her latest project, Post Feels. Photo courtesy of Goodyear Arts.

Charlotte has no lack of fine art, with quality pieces featured every where from billboards to restaurants, apartment buildings to popup markets. Here is a guide to five of the many talented artists in Charlotte whose work you have probably spotted around the city.

Nathaniel Lancaster

UNCC Alum Nathaniel Lancaster’s paintings have been sprinkled around Charlotte art galleries for several years now, but most Charlotteans would probably recognize his style from his commissioned painting of a large buffalo displayed in the downstairs dining area at 5Church in Uptown Charlotte.

His dreamy surrealist paintings have been featured at many different art organizations, ranging from local venues like McColl Center and the Cornelius Arts Center, to larger institutions like the North Carolina Museum of Art. Although Nat has been represented by galleries on both coasts, he chose to root his career in Charlotte because of positive experiences working in the Charlotte art community.

“I like that it’s small,” he says, “but also that there seems to be many projects and opportunities to go around. I find that most of the artists I know in town are supportive of one another as well… I don’t think anyone wants to be in a cutthroat scene.”

Nat’s pieces usually cost a couple hundred to several thousand dollars for a painting, but he is open to bartering goods or services in exchange for a piece. You can check out Nathaniel’s work in his studio at Goodyear Arts at Camp North End. You can see more of Nathaniel’s work at www.nathaniellancaster.com or on his Instagram @nathaniellancasterart.

Elisa Sanchez

Professional illustrator Elisa Sanchez didn’t expect to become a career artist.

“My drawings from grade school weren’t anything special, and that’s coming from my mom,” Sanchez says of her natural abilities. “I think I have a natural eye, but definitely there is a large portion of skill that only came from determined, and occasionally obsessive, practice.”

After graduating from UNCC in 2014, she started selling her art at local markets such as the early Covet Atelier and VTGCLT as a side project. Over time, she started booking shows at venues like Petra’s and Salud Cerveceria. Currently, she is a member of the Goodyear Collective in Camp North End.

Elisa is known for her elegant botanical drawings produced in a variety of mediums from more traditional mediums like ink and pencil to leather engraving and pyrography, or wood burning. At one point, she even created a series of hand designed temporary tattoos of her drawings. In stark contrast to delicate floral illustrations, she also creates startling paper sculptures of insects with human body parts, such as eyes or teeth.
Her work is priced between $50-$200 and is currently on view at Goodyear Arts and Greenhill Gallery in Greensboro.

Check out more of her work on her instagram at @elissandraa and her website www.elissandra.com.

Stephen and Nathan Tucker

Stephen and Nathan Tucker of Powder Studio make a delightful array of small batch porcelain ceramics, from goods, from succulent holders to mugs to tableware sets and light fixtures. Their signature “slip casting” technique allows them to make small batches of ceramics with unique touches to make each piece a unique work of art.
Coffee aficionados have probably seen their pieces stocked at Not Just Coffee at Packard Place. Also, for the month of August, you can pick up one of their signature NC Pride mugs at the Uptown Charlotte Visitor Info Center at 329 S. Tryon St.

After spending several years at Hart Witzen Studio in NoDa, Powder Studio recently moved out to Monroe to increase their production capacity. They plan to have open studio days and events to share their process and passion with the public. You can also meet Stephen and Nathan at the Charlotte Pride Festival with a booth next to the Charlotte Visitor Info Center. For more information, check out their website at www.powder-studio.com and follow them on Instagram at @powderstudioclt.

Tina Alberni

Even if you don’t know Tina by name, you have certainly seen her work sprinkled across the Charlotte cityscape. Catalyst apartments Uptown featured her works this year, and she was a fixture at the now closed Ciel Gallery for several years. Additionally, many may remember her colorful patterned designs on billboards and newsstands displayed throughout the city through the Art Pop program in 2014.

A reflective period after a recent bout of a severe illness has inspired Alberni to think about public health topics and global issues as influences in her art. Lately, she has been creating large-scale installations that reflect on deeper topics such as health epidemics, the environment, and healing with whimsical and visually pleasing designs.

Alberni also demonstrates a global focus in her art through her handmade artisanal jewelry collections. Influenced by her time living in South America in her late teens, Alberni creates colorful beaded clusters connected with “Quipu” knots, which were used throughout South American history to record information and statistics. Alberni will be selling these pieces this September at the Tawba Walk in Cornelius.

For more information, visit www.colordesignstudio.com or follow Tina on Instagram @tinas_art_beat.

This piece is titled “Halcyon Moments”. It is NFS but if you know of a permanent public space this could hang, please let me know. It hangs nearly 10ft long and about 3 ft wide. I layered acrylic, gold leaf, metal, recycled elements and a variety of viscous mediums. I incorporate pattern, reflective gold, which is an idyllic and healing color in my life, and ungoverned textures capturing moments of serenity which, just like that, instantly become a part of my past and who I am. This piece immortalizes these moments. Read more about this piece and my love affair with pattern and repetition. http://www.colordesignstudio.com/blog/halcyon-moments This piece makes its debut at Ciel Gallery for the Abstractions Show through the month of July. #installationart #publicart #abstract #halcyon #pattern #repetition #gold #wallhanging #charlotte #cltarts #ncarts #tinas_art_beat #cielcharlotte #contemporaryart #cielcharlotte

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HNin Nie

HNin Nie is a newcomer making a big splash on the Charlotte art scene. Her latest project, Post Feels, explores a broad range of emotions and mental states through the lens of comic-style characters named Negative Nancy and her friends. These images, inspired by Nie’s experiences growing past negativity and toxic relationships, are humorous, thought-provoking, and extremely relatable.

“Even though my paintings are about my experiences,” Nie says of her work, “I want everyone to be able to look at them and see their story.”

Her paintings have been featured at Petra’s, Southern Tiger Collective, and most recently, as a resident at Goodyear Arts. They range in price between $200-500. For more information, check out her website at www.hninnie.com/art/ and follow her on Instagram at @thepostfeels.

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