Cape Fear Studios is a nonprofit arts organization that provides a unique space for art in historic Downtown Fayetteville. The old brick building houses a combination of studio space and gallery space. It gives member artists not only a place to create, but also a place to display and sell their work. Even more important, however, is the community that the space creates. It brings together creative people from all over the area that may not have been able to meet otherwise. They can share their ideas, work and inspirations. It fosters collaboration. The discussions that members have amongst themselves here promote growth in the artistic community. There are exhibits that rotate out on regular basis.
The organization also fosters the relationship between local artists and the outside public. Everyone is invited to come into the gallery and to engage with the art and artists present. This is especially true during 4th Fridays when the gallery is open late specifically for this reason. This commitment is even part of the organizations mission statement: “Our mission is to involve, educate, and enrich Cumberland County and surrounding communities with the opportunity to create and freely view art.” This also includes classes, workshops and mentoring opportunities.
There are two galleries at Cape Fear Studios. The first is the retail gallery. Here, members display their works that are available for purchase. Members are voted in by a jury based on their work. They help to run the studio, but also benefit from the available space. There is a variety in styles and mediums of active member artists. At any one time the retail gallery may boast glass art, fine jewelry, paintings, sculptures, pottery, photographs, wood art and more. This variety of mediums is also beneficial for the artists. They can gain insight and explore new ideas, processes and techniques. Diversity is important for growth in any artistic organization.
The main gallery is where the rotating exhibits are held. The themes and guidelines for these exhibits are continually different, which makes every exhibit fresh and interesting. One month it may feature local painters and the next it may feature national potters. Members submit months of their hard work and creativity to be put on display.
Buying a something here has long-reaching effects because it also supports local artists and Cape Fear Studios. It has a much more positive effect on the local community than purchasing a gift at a global chain. It is always fun to shop for gifts, but don’t ignore the potential power that every dollar has in shaping the community.
Cape Fear Studios is located at 148 Maxwell St. The gallery is free to the public. For more information, including information on how to become a member, classes or workshops visit the website: www.capefearstudios.com.