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Attic 506 invites local community to explore artistic space

T-shirts designed by Chris Musina hang on the wall inside Attic 506 on Friday, Jan. 12, 2024.

Working art studio Attic 506 held its first open house of the year last Friday, allowing community members to get an inside look into the creative process of local artists. 

Located on Franklin Street, Attic 506 is a second floor studio above music venue and bar, Local 506. Since the studio opened in 2018, a number of artists have taken residency and used the working space for their endeavors.

The current artists at Attic 506 are Ben Alper, Chris Musina, Fig Hendrick and Wayne Marcelli. While Hendrick has been in the space longest, everyone else arrived either late last year or earlier this year, according to Musina, who paints realistic pieces.

Each artist has a designated room in the studio they can utilize for their creative pursuits and visions.

Marcelli is an abstract artist and painter and Hendrick's work includes sculpture, painting and video. Alper, who works mostly with photography, runs a small publishing company out of his studio space and Musina also uses his space to design and sell T-shirts. 

“It gives a place for artists in the Chapel Hill and Carrboro area a place to make work and experiment,” Musina said.

During the open studio on Friday, each artist got to decide how to organize and display their space. Alper said he hopes to use his photography to foster connections with others, including whoever may come in off the street.

Nuvan Rathnayaka, a local resident, said he heard about the Attic 506 open studio and other art walk opportunities in the area through INDY Week.

Rathnayaka said he was particularly intrigued by Hendrick’s studio room, which was very multifaceted.

“There's photography and charcoal sculptures, all kinds of different mediums which was cool to see,” he said.

Rathnayaka said he enjoyed the opportunity to see an artist's work in progress and get a close view of their space and process.

Musina and Alper, who are currently running Attic 506, are working to increase its community engagement. Moving forward, they hope to have open studios monthly

Through these community activities artists are also given the opportunity to interact with viewers, and Musina said he is looking forward to more engagement with people who come in to the studio.

“I'll have the paintings that I'm currently working on; people can come see them in process, talk to me and ask questions,” Musina said.

Attic 506 also has a rooftop and hallways that they are hoping to utilize for events. He said they are going to try to curate smaller shows in the hallways with drawings or photos from local artists. They also hope to host film screenings, poetry readings, concerts and craft markets on the roof.

While the members of the studio evolve, the group is working to find their footing and want to continue maintaining the legacy of Attic 506, whose fabric is made from community involvement, Musina said. 

“We definitely just want to be open and do some fun things in the community and keep a place for creative people in Chapel Hill,” he said.

@dthlifestyle |

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