by Cathy Martin • photograph by Justin Driscoll
Visitors to ParkTowne Village in south Charlotte might notice a bright pop of color on their next shopping run: Painter Sharon Dowell created “Burgeoning,” a staircase mural at the retail center at the intersection of Park and Woodlawn roads. A prolific artist, you may have seen Dowell’s other recent works at Camp North End, 800 Degrees Woodfired Kitchen and the new UNC Charlotte Marriott & Conference Center.
The actual painting portion of the project was completed in just a week and a half, quicker than most public art projects thanks to a bevy of assistants Dowell brought in to help. “I was over five months pregnant at the time of the project and could only last three to four hours maximum in the heat crawling like a crab on the stairs,” Dowell says. So, she enlisted Christopher Holston, Kalin Devone, Swych, Claire Santos and Felicia Sutton — all talented artists in their own right — to help. “I have found that many artists in the Charlotte art community are very supportive of each other,” Dowell says. “Just as I’ve had some great mentors and peers help me grow, the goal for me is that my assistants can learn something from working on my projects that will help them continue to blossom in their own careers as well.” Learn more about the artist at sharondowell.com or follow her on Instagram @sharon_dowell. SP