LifeSpan Artist To Show New Works During NoDa Gallery Crawl

"The Colors of High Country" by Lisa Thompson

September 2, 2010 (CHARLOTTE, NC) – The LifeSpan Arts Studio in Charlotte’s historic NoDa arts district will host an opening reception for “The Color of High Country,” an exhibit of new paintings by Lisa Thompson, on Friday, September 3, from 5-8 p.m.

Lisa Thompson is a resident in one of the group homes in Charlotte for people with disabilities operated by RHA Howell, Inc., a statewide organization that has been serving people with disabilities and and their families for more than 35 years. Lisa receives day support at LifeSpan Arts, a community based arts program for individuals with cognitive and physical disabilities.

This isn’t Lisa’s first exhibition of her artwork. Earlier this year, she won first prize in a juried exhibition at the Enrichment Center in Winston Salem for a mixed media piece entitled “S. Lexington.”

“We all know she is a very talented artist, and we would love to see lots of people come out to support her and her work,” said Brittany Higginbotham, an arts assistant at LifeSpan.

LifeSpan Arts is part of LifeSpan, Inc., an organization that develops and operates programs that emphasize inclusion and choice in order to provide education, employment, and enrichment to individuals with developmental disabilities. For more information on the arts program, visit the Facebook page at

The LifeSpan Arts studio is located at 2424 N. Davidson St., Suite 110, Charlotte, NC 28205. Lisa Thompson’s opening reception is part of the NoDa district’s twice-monthly Gallery Crawl.

For more information on RHA Howell, visit

About RHA Howell, Inc.:

RHA Howell is a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) organization that has been helping people with disabilities and special needs, and their families, make choices to live more independently for more than 35 years. Integrity, high standards for quality, and hard work are at the core of every RHA Howell disability assistance program. Proven leaders in caring for people, RHA Howell, Inc. is a pioneering force in the field of human services, particularly supporting infants and children. For more information, go to

Jason Craighead To Participate In Major Group Exhibition

The Raleigh artist will show four works-on-paper in Green Hill Center show.

"Studio Floor Drawing 3" by Jason Craighead

August 30, 2010 (RALEIGH, NC) — Raleigh artist Jason Craighead has been invited to participate in a major group exhibition at the Green Hill Center for NC Art in Greensboro, NC, entitled “Drawing Revisited.” The show will run from September 10 through October 31.

“Drawing Revisited” will showcase over 50 North Carolina artists who work “in a medium, which, in the digital age, may appear to be a slow and intimate art form,” according to the Center’s website. “Over 200 works on paper in graphite, watercolor, artist’s crayon, wash, charcoal and ink will attest to the ongoing vitality of drawing.”

Craighead will contribute four 22 by 30 mixed-media-on-paper works that he created “one Saturday morning on my porch while a friend was playing his guitar.” These particular pieces first appeared in a 2008 exhibit at the Fayetteville Museum of Art.

“These particular works represent a very specific moment in my past as an artist and human,” he said, “a moment of clarity and honesty — becoming confident in ‘feeling’.”

The opening reception for “Drawing Revisited” will be held Friday, September 10th, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Jason Craighead will present a lecture on the subject in the Center on October 13.

Jason Craighead is currently represented by Broadhurst Gallery in Pinehurst ( and by Flanders Gallery in Raleigh ( For more information on the artist, visit

The Green Hill Center for NC Art is located at 200 North Davie Street, Greensboro, NC 27401. For more information visit

About the artist:

A professional artist for over a decade, Jason Craighead is a recognized leader in the North Carolina arts community. His work has been included in many solo and group exhibitions throughout the Southeastern United States. He has received numerous awards and served as a juror for various art shows. He has been selected as Signature Artist for major charitable art auctions, and his work has been featured in a number of publications, including Artists & Art Galleries of the Southeast. He is also a member of the City of Raleigh Arts Commission and the Raleigh Public Arts Committee.

Jason Craighead Contributes “Recycled” Art to Green Frame Exposition

"Self & System" by Jason Craighead, mixed media on encyclopedia and column.

April 12, 2010 (RALEIGH, NC) –  Jason Craighead, an artist and the newest member of the Raleigh Arts Commission, is one of only 16 local artists who were invited by Builders of Hope to recycle discarded materials into works of art for “Green Frame: An Exposition in Reclaimed Materials” fundraiser. His composition, entitled “Self and System,” will be up for auction on April 24 at the Raleigh City Museum in downtown Raleigh along with the other artists’ works.

Builders of Hope CDC is a non-profit, tax-exempted corporation that works to provide quality affordable housing in cities and towns across the United States to stimulate revitalization and develop health, safe communities. “Green Frame, An Exposition in Reclaimed Materials,” is a fundraiser that, according to the website, “celebrates the mission of Builders of Hope through the vision of local artists. Using materials reclaimed from Builders of Hope, 16 invited artists have created unique interpretations of what it means to recycle, rebuild, and renew hope.”

Craighead and the other artists were asked to use items and materials that would otherwise be thrown away to create something of beauty and function. “Self and System” is a mixed media on encyclopedias and column sculpture. The artist describes his inspiration:

“This piece is commenting on education and the renewal of belief in the human self, how we lose it in our educational system and our efforts to achieve ‘status,’ then find ourselves feeling empty, even worthless, by this society’s definition. Returning focus to the self and not the struggle can bring about a community that works collectively and honestly. Less division and competition….no more good, better, best….education vs. inspiration.”

An accomplished artist who has been exhibited widely in galleries and museums, Jason Craighead was appointed to the Raleigh Arts Council earlier this month. Before that, he served on the Council’s Public Art Program. He has also donated numerous paintings to charitable art auctions for many years, including the Works of Heart auction for the Carolina AIDS Alliance and Visual Art Exchange’s annual fundraiser.

Builders of Hope’s Green Frame Exposition began with an “Official Opening Bash,” free and open to the public, at the City Museum on Friday, April 9. The Auction Party will be held in the Museum at Saturday, April 24, from 7-10 p.m. Auction tickets are $100 each or $175 per couple. The City Museum is located at 220 Fayetteville Street. To reserve tickets, call 800-277-6138 or email:

For more information on the event, including the list of all participating artists, visit

For more information on Jason Craighead, go to

About Jason Craighead:

Jason Craighead has been named Best Artist in Raleigh Metro Magazine’s annual MetroBravo reader’s poll for five consecutive years. His paintings have been featured in numerous gallery exhibits and belong to many public and private art collections. An active member of the North Carolina arts community, he has worked with the Raleigh Arts Commission on its plans for future public art and frequently donates his paintings to charitable causes, including Works of Heart, the Triangle area’s annual premiere art auction to benefit The Alliance of AIDS Services – Carolina. For more information visit

Solo Show at Pinehurst Gallery To Feature Raleigh Artist Jason Craighead

"Whole" 100w x 64h, mixed media on canvas

March 3, 2010 (Pinehurst, NC) – Broadhurst Gallery in Pinehurst, NC, will open a solo exhibit of recent works by Raleigh artist Jason Craighead on Sunday, March 14, from 2-4 p.m. A gallery talk with the artist will begin at 4 p.m.

Jason Craighead is best known for his predominantly large-scale paintings that combine acrylic, oil pastel, and graphite in multiple layers of color, lines, and drips. For the Broadhurst show, he will hang 12 to 16 works that range from works on canvas and paper to works on book and encyclopedia covers, representing an evolution from the work he presented in his most recent show at Somerhill Gallery in Durham, NC.

“I always have the feeling of being right on the edge of something,” he said recently. “My work is always about growth and furthering exploration.”

The artist’s ongoing evolution is one of the reasons gallery owner Judy Broadhurst is excited about this show.

“I love to support an artist who realizes that change is important and necessary,” she said. “I love Jason’s new work. It’s more open, there’s more color. It is new for him and I support that. Jason is also great to work with, and I’m delighted that he will be at the opening and give a gallery talk. That’s another reason I’m excited about his show.”

Broadhurst also timed Craighead’s show to coincide with the busy tourist season in Pinehurst. “This is the time of year when anyone who plays golf wants to come to Pinehurst,” she said. “Since Jason is a contemporary artist, this is a good time of the year to have his show.”

Broadhurst Gallery is located at 2212 Midland Road, Pinehurst. Regular gallery hours are Tuesday-Friday 11am-5pm Saturday 1pm-4pm and evenings by appointment. For more information visit www.broadhurst

For more information on Jason Craighead and to see examples of his work, visit

About Jason Craighead:

Jason Craighead has been named Best Artist in Raleigh Metro Magazine’s annual MetroBravo reader’s poll for five consecutive years. His paintings have been featured in numerous gallery exhibits and belong to many public and private art collections. An active member of the North Carolina arts community, he is now working with the Raleigh Arts Commission on its plans for future public art. He also frequently donates his paintings to charitable causes, including Works of Heart, the Triangle area’s annual premiere art auction to benefit The Alliance of AIDS Services – Carolina. For more information visit

Raleigh Artists To Open “Studio 600” on Glenwood South

Jason Craighead © f8 Photo Studios

November 2, 2009 (RALEIGH, NC) — Artists Jason Craighead and David Green will open Studio 600, their new working studios, to the public during Raleigh’s First Friday Art Walk, November 6, starting at 7 p.m. Studio 600 is located at 600 Glenwood South, Raleigh, NC,  between the 606 Lounge and Abbey Carpets.


After working out of a spare bedroom-turned-studio in his downtown Raleigh apartment for several years, Craighead was seriously looking for separate space when two things came together: His friend, mixed-media artist David Green, also needed a studio, and the warehouse space behind Abbey Carpets at 600 Glenwood South became available.


“Studio 600 – which is simply named for the address – will make us more accessible to the public,” said Craighead. “It also gives us a place to create work without having to live in it. And it gives us a great place to collaborate on some work. I want to do other things, besides painting.”


At approximately 1000 square feet, the new studios offer plenty of storage space to accommodate the artists’ completed works. Craighead’s paintings tend to be large, so getting them out of his downtown apartment was a major plus, he said.


Craighead and Green have up-fitted the warehouse-turned-studios themselves, with a little help from friends — framing out, dry-walling and painting the interior, and installing lighting. When Studio 600 opens to the public on November 6, the interior will feature a small entrance gallery/foyer, additional display walls beyond and to the right of that area, dedicated working space for each artist, and ample storage units.

studio floor drawing 3
"Studio Floor Drawing," mixed media on paper, by Jason Craighead


About the entrance area, Craighead noted that he and Green do not intend to use it just to display their own work. They will invite other artists to use the space for shows and art installations.


“If you’re going to participate in the community, why just hang your own work? Participate in the community,” he said. “Let somebody else have some fun.”


He noted, however, that “shows” are only for a day and a half. Studio 600 will be open to the public each First Friday and the following Saturday. After that, all but the front area is strictly for creating art work and open otherwise only by appointment.


“This is not a gallery,” he stressed. “It’s a working studio.”


For more information on Studio 600, contact Jason Craighead at; or call 919-946-4219.


About Jason Craighead:


Jason Craighead has been named Best Artist in Raleigh Metro Magazine’s annual MetroBravo reader’s poll for five consecutive years. His paintings have been featured in numerous gallery exhibits and belong to many public and private art collections. An active member of the North Carolina arts community, he is now working with the Raleigh Arts Commission on its plans for future public art. He also frequently donates his paintings to charitable causes, including Works of Heart, the Triangle area’s annual premiere art auction to benefit The Alliance of AIDS Services – Carolina. For more information visit

Kimberly Alvis Opens Still-Life Exhibit in Cameron Village

Still life by Kimberly Alvis
Still life by Kimberly Alvis

September 1, 2009 (RALEIGH, NC) – Chapel Hill artist Kimberly Alvis will contrast her classical approach to still-life painting with Raleigh artist Eric McRay’s more contemporary interpretation when the Little Art Gallery & Craft Collection in Cameron Village in Raleigh opens an exhibit of new works by both artists on Saturday, September 12. The artists’ reception will be held from 3-5 p.m. and the show will run through October 10.

“What makes the show so interesting is seeing how two artists interpret the same subject matter — still-lifes — so differently,” said Little Art Gallery owner Rosanne Green Minick.

Minick noted that Alvis’ work embraces the more traditional, painterly approach to still-life painting while McRay’s is more illustrative and whimsical.

Still life by Kimberly Alvis
Still life by Kimberly Alvis

Alvis, an award-winning artist who is best known for her still lifes and landscapes, commented on her thought process when she begins a painting: “When I put together a still life, or even when I am picking a landscape to paint, I try to think abstractly. I try to break everything down to the most simple elements, like beautiful colors, interesting shapes, and a flow of light that will take the viewer’s eye through the painting.”

Alvis’ still life paintings often feature elements from her extensive gardens in Chapel Hill, along with fresh fruits and interesting pottery or porcelain. When asked about her compositional choices, she said, “When I choose an item, I am never really thinking in terms of what the object actually is. I might be thinking a round object with a warm color would work well in this composition. Let me try a peach!”

Alvis’ still lifes and other works have been exhibited nationally at such venues as The Art Students League, The Salmagundi Club, and the Washington Square Outdoor Art Exhibit, all in New York City; and the Huntsman Fine Arts Gallery in Aspen, Colorado. Her work has received numerous awards including Best In Show two years in a row from The Arts Students League Annual Student Exhibition in New York City.

Kimberly Alvis is represented in the Triangle region by Little Art Gallery & Craft Collection in Raleigh and by Somerhill Gallery in Durham.

The Little Art Gallery is located at 432 Daniels Street. For more information and directions, go to

For more information on Kimberly Alvis and to see more of her work, visit

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Jason Craighead To Participate in “The Study Group” Exhibition at The Collectors Gallery

progress-jan-08.jpgMarch 2, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) – Raleigh artist Jason Craighead will participate in a special exhibition at the Collector’s Gallery entitled “The Study Group.” The opening reception will be held Thursday, March 6 from 6-9 p.m. The show runs through April 12.

As a result of a long and mentoring relationship with the late and noted North Carolina artist George Bireline, Raleigh artists Robert Irwin and Bob Rankin formed a study group along with Anthony Ulinski, Richard Garrison, David Connell and Craighead. The group meets regularly to share ideas, offer critiques and support one another. The Collectors Gallery exhibit will showcase work by each artist in the group.

Represented in the Triangle by Somerhill Gallery in Chapel Hill, Craighead will hang two paintings: “Bridge Study #2” (25w x 30h) and “Progress Jan-08” (60w x 60h). Both pieces are part of a larger body of work depicting “idea on construction, deconstruction, revitalization and the energies produced in an urban environment,” he said. Other paintings in his newest series of work are currently on display at the Miriam Preston Block Art Gallery in the Raleigh Municipal Building.

The Collectors Gallery is a partnership between Rory Parnell, formerly of Raleigh Contemporary Gallery, and Megg Rader, former executive Director of Artspace. The gallery is located at in the historic City Market in downtown Raleigh and is part of the Moore Square Art District. For more information visit

Along with Somerhill Gallery, Jason Craighead is also represented by Broadhurst Gallery in Pinehurst; Anne Irwin Fine Art in Atlanta, Georgia; and Bucks Gallery of Fine Art in Newtown, Pennsylvania. For more information on the artist, contact Kim Weiss at blueplate pr: 919-272-8615;


Downtown Raleigh Art Gallery Presents New Works by Jason Craighead

January 15, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) – For the first time since October 2006, abstract expressionist Jason Craighead will present his latest work in a Raleigh venue when he joins artist Tricia McKellar for a special exhibit entitled “Microcosm/Macrocosm” to be held at the Miriam Preston Block Art Gallery in the Avery Upchurch Municipal Building in downtown Raleigh (222 West Hargett Street). The exhibit will open with an artists’ reception on First Friday, February 1, 5-7 p.m., and remain up through March 13.

Craighead, who recently served as a member of the City of Raleigh Arts Commission’s (RAC) 30th Anniversary Committee, will hang nine new paintings for the show ranging in size from approximately 16×18 to 80×80.

“My current work includes ideas on construction, deconstruction, revitalization, and the energies produced in an urban environment,” the artist said recently. “They’re not depictions of reality, but responses to the visual treat that is everyday city life within the structure and chaos that surrounds us. There is beauty to be found in the grit if we choose to be observant.”

The artist’s lasts Raleigh show was held at the former Glance Gallery on West Martin Street. He is currently represented by Somerhill Gallery in Chapel Hill, Broadhurst Gallery in Pinehurst, New Elements Gallery in Wilmington, Anne Irwin Fine Art in Atlanta, GA, and Bucks Gallery of Fine Art in Newtown, PA.

A selection panel of visual arts professionals and member of the Arts
Commission select the artists whose work is displayed in
the gallery. The Municipal Building Art Exhibition program began as a means to support Raleigh’s visual arts community with opportunities to exhibit work in a visible and professional downtown location. For more information contact June Guralnick at 919-890-3610.

For more information on Jason Craighead, contact Kim Weiss at blueplate pr, 919-272-8615;


When Objects Become Art: N.C. Architect Turns To Artists To Get The Job Done

January 11, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) – “We talk about a concept and the artists take it from there,” Raleigh architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, told Residential Architect magazine in a recent article on the benefits of working with artists, rather than contractors, when a design detail needs a creative and often handmade solution. “Working with craftspeople is the most efficient way to get things done.”

Harmon was one of seven architects interviewed by author Cheryl Weber for the article, entitled “Supplied by Architect: working with fabricators to blur the boundaries between objects and art.” (RA, September-October 2007). He and the others regularly work with artists and craftspeople on their projects.

Harmon was specifically singled out for his award-winning work on a residence in Charleston, SC, that features 10 pivoting, perforated-metal panels which span, protect and shade the west-facing side of the house. Fabricated by Christian Karkow, a local metalsmith, the panels received an award in Residential Architect’s 2006 design competition in the “details” category.

“I knew that if I made a detailed drawing and gave it to the contractor, he would have charged $200,000,” Harmon told Weber. By working with a Karkow, “I got it done for a fraction of that.”

However, Harmon and the others stressed that saving money is certainly not the primary reason for bringing artists and craftsmen to the table. Their hands-on ingenuity is often invaluable.

“You don’t design it for them; then they become the worker,” he said. “You make a sketch and enroll them in the concept. They take it from there and usually make it better… We just leave it off the contractor’s drawing and say “supplied by architect.’”

The entire article can be read at by entering a search on the site for “supplied by architect.”

Frank Harmon’s work, which ranges from small sheds to 70,000-square-foot corporate headquarters, has received more AIA/NC awards than any other firm in the state and has been published in international, national and regional periodicals and books, including Architectural Record, Dwell and Waterfront Homes & Design. His work has become synonymous with sustainable, or “green,” architecture, and his firm was named Top Firm Of The Year by Residential Architect magazine in 2005. For more information, visit