Luminous Lane is the alley transformed by muralists and street artists during Charlotte Shout 2023. Artists Sydney Duarte and Treazy Treaz curated a collection of over 40 artists to fill this alley with light and color and turn this neglected urban space to an inviting and welcoming, art filled alley. Luminous Lane and the Luminous Lane ArtWalk are sponsored by Charlotte Center City Partners. For additional information on the project and artists, check out https://www.thetravelinggypsy.org/luminouslane
PARKING: Available on the surrounding streets at meters, or paid parking in decks or lots
TRANSIT: Blue Line Light Rail from Convention Center or Transit Center
At the 3rd Street entrance to Luminous Lane, Treazy Treaz painted a monumental mural in less than two weeks. The standing figure holds a can of paint and a spray can to represent the artists bringing this alley to life. Complementary colors of blue and orange draw your attention to the top and bottom of the mural. Treazy thrills the viewer with his lush flowers and realism that invites you to enter the alley and discover more.
As co-curator of the Luminous Lane project, Treazy brought a playful and always smiling attitude to the many challenges of coordinating over 40 artists creating individually in one space with a very tight timeline. His willingness to always talk to visitors and show them around was amazing and so appreciated by many. At the title mural, Treazy introduces the blue and purple colors that help unify the alley.
Classical Art and Graffiti. Brian Michelotti loves them both. And highlights. Notice how you can form a triangle from the bee to the highlights on the fingers, and the highlights on the face. Inspired by Classical Greek marble statues, the artist brings soft textures and humanism to the alley as a contrast to the abstract, clean lines often seen in street art.
In classic street art language, Hxncho paints characters that explode off the wall in his “wild and wacky” style. In a twist on tagging, the artist layered on graffiti to make it seems like he was tagging his own art. There are some sweet references included here so look for them. The outlined animal shapes are a nod to Keith Haring, a graffiti icon. Also look for the crown which is often an element in graffiti and could be a tip to our Queen City.
Did you know that there are examples of graffiti found on the walls of ancient Pompeii? Contemporary graffiti got its start in 1970s New York City. One of the hallmarks of graffiti is writing, or lettering. This is a perfect example of a hand style or a style of graffiti unique to a particular artist. Can you make out the wild-style letters in this street mural?
Pam Imhof loves murals and fiber arts and loves it even more when she can combine the two media in one piece. Note her use of a crochet “yarn bomb” to create the written message and the logo of the Charlotte Shout festival. Spray-painted moths represent artistic enlightenment and her journey as an artist.
Rebecca Lipps has painted a series of murals with portraits and flowers growing out of their heads. It is a reminder to recognize your own growth. You can find one of her similar murals on our NoDa ArtWalk hidden in an alley. The Night Blooming Jasmine flower growing from the portrait is depicted here since it only blooms when the moon rises.
Katrina Cherry often draws subject matter from African American culture and here she paints tribal masks as protection from negative or dark energies. Bright, colorful, and abstract masks stand tall on the column fiercely looking over the murals.
In the first of the three portraits of sun gods and goddesses, Randy Pender paints Helios, the Greek god of the sun. Pender shows the Classical form of the human body and some white drapery. The moon sets behind the god as the god looks toward the day. Compare this Classical figure with the first one by @hobo_husband and note the similarities.
In the second of the series of sun gods and goddesses, Emily Andress paints Sunna, the Norse goddess of the sun. The artists of Awaken Gallery wanted to show balance through their use of sun gods and goddesses by including traditionally known god, a female goddess and Pan-Asian god. Each of the male gods looks toward the center female god with her strong and radiating power.
In the last of the series of sun gods and goddesses, Rex RitaRita paints the Philippine sun god Apolaki. Honoring the culture of his childhood, the artist includes native plants and flowers of the Philippines in the background. Apolaki turns his face to the sun and his muscular body connects to his dual role as god of war to protect his people.
True story. On the last day of Charlotte Shout, Markus Burke wandered over to Luminous Lane after another event wrapped up. Within minutes Sydney Duarte, co-curator of the event, offered Burke her last cans of paint if he wanted to paint a mural on one of the remaining garage walls. Burke jumped at the chance and without any prep or planning, added the light and the dark wolf to symbolize the light and dark within us.
Dorian Williams loves comics and characters, a staple of street art. In this asymmetrically balanced composition of the portrait on the left and the outstretched hand, the viewer sees energy and movement. “Love Yours” is a message to love YOUR LIGHT! Sometimes artists leave you clues or hidden messages. The speech bubble on the left features three eyeball forms. Thinking about the artist’s Instagram name, what do you think these might stand for in his work?
The GLORPS are here in center city! Toukatly’s signature GLORPS – scary, funny, melty, colorful, beings – bring energy to this alley. Note how he uses the open space of the parking deck as their mouths. Follow all the organic and flowing outlines as they are the perfect contrast to the sharp, geometric lines of the alley.
Bioluminescent jellyfish bring light to the darkest ocean waters. Svitko’s love of symmetry and animals celebrate these unique organisms. The artist’s unique style and more than life size scale allows you to imagine sharing your light in this alley.
In her meticulously constructed urban perspective, Esther Moorehead believes that we can find light by being in community with others. Reflecting on the last few years as a dark and puzzling time, the artist features people walking together with heavy use of highlights on each figure. The light is always there, and we must find it. Go ahead. Take your selfie walking in the crosswalk and tag the artist. Moorehead loves to see viewers interact with her mural.
Nony paints an angler fish. Angler fish are bioluminescent like the jellyfish a couple of murals down. Nony is known for how he creates visual texture or the illusion of softness that you see in this fish. The dogwood blossoms are a connection to North Carolina, as they are the state flower. And the crown that is shining brightly is our Queen City.
Two strong elements compete in the composition. The strong, fierce portrait on the right using lines and the vanishing point with rays coming from in on the left set the viewer up to consider what separates us from the light. Sometimes there are challenges, represented by the strong shapes in the middle. But the artist reminds us to stay on the path and keep going to find the light!
DeNeer Davis is sending you a love note to remind you to love yourself! Her positive affirmations in bold black lettering pop off the wall against a colorful and vibrant background. Repeat after me. “I am enough.” “I am worthy.” I believe in myself” and “I am whole.” Notice the lined notebook paper of a child perhaps reminding to us to carry that child-like wonder along with us. Find the crowns. What do they mean to you in this mural?
For Natalie Daratony, light comes from her family. In her column mural the artist paints the birth flower of each of her family members. So far just on this right side, there are at least four to five flowers included in murals. Maybe take a minute to walk back and look at all of them and notice all the different styles of flowers, some realistic like these and some that are more abstract.
Portraits. Mark Doepker loves portraits. He believes that portraits act as mirrors for us to better see ourselves. Notice where each of these portraits is looking and how that influences the feeling you get looking at them. Also look closely at how Doepker flipped the colors from bottom to top. Blue is the main face color on the bottom and pink is the main color on the top image. Can you see the stars from the mural by Miss Lotus that are shooting across in the background of his mural?
The lotus flower grows from mud to become a beautiful flower that represents our path to enlightenment. Crystals also come from dark to become sources of lights. The artist Miss Lotus paints her signature lotus flowers with heavy outline and delicate shading. This is the perfect spot to meditate on these two powerful symbols of light.
Embrace the silliness of an open-jawed lizard in the middle of center city. That’s what the artist wants you to do as he paints to find fun, laughter, and a bright, shiny spot or tooth in your everyday surroundings. Make note of the clever use of the air conditioning vent where the artist paints nigiri, a type of suschi.
CHEEKS paints a message in a mural on the side of a building over 40 feet tall! Growing up can be hard and CHEEKS reminds his young sister-in-law in the portrait to remember to connect with your roots, be young at heart, and stay true to yourself. Gentle reminders so you can be the light in dark places. Three elements in the mural, the plants and frogs, the teddy bear, and the CHEEKS fishies send this message of love and family.