Two early childhood development programs used in Orange County could face cuts of up to 20 percent if the N.C. House of Representatives’ budget is passed.
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Two early childhood development programs used in Orange County could face cuts of up to 20 percent if the N.C. House of Representatives’ budget is passed.
After leading a Connecticut public school system during its rise from 30th to 8th-best in the state, Thomas Forcella is ready for a change of scenery.
UNC Health Care will likely have to look off campus or renovate current spaces when considering growth of its facilities.
After years of debate, the Chapel Hill Town Council will hear from residents in a public hearing on whether a local homeless shelter should get a new address.
For some, it’s an all too familiar feeling.
As UNC’s club ice hockey team scored goals against opponents at Hillsborough’s Triangle SportsPlex this weekend, they also scored assists for the county’s local profile.
The future of the Chapel Hill Public Library will be decided tonight, and it likely won’t include a change of address for the local landmark.
The second floor of the Inter-Faith Council for Social Service’s Community House on Rosemary Street houses two dormitory-style rooms filled with wooden bunks for residents. Paint peels off a nearby wall, hanging idly. Floors are scuffed, and the beds are made up with faded, donated sheets.
When Robert Weiss saw a production of George Balanchine’s influential New York City Ballet production of “The Nutcracker” as a child, he knew immediately that he wanted to become a dancer.“When the lights went down and the curtain went up, you’re transported into a magical world where anything is possible,” Weiss said. “And I said, ‘That’s the world I want to live in.’”
From Franklin Street to the Southern Village Green, new sculptures are popping up around Chapel Hill.They’re part of the 2009-10 Sculpture Visions exhibition, which is being installed this month through Chapel Hill’s Public Arts Office.“It’s like having a museum without walls,” said Jeffrey York, public arts administrator for Chapel Hill.For this year’s exhibition — the fifth since 2004 — the Public Arts Office has loaned or rented sculptures to display them around town for one- to two-year periods.Ten sculptures will be displayed this year, the most in a Sculpture Visions exhibition since 2006-07.Charlie Brouwer, an artist from Willis, Va., installed his wood sculpture “Hope Is…” on Nov. 20 at the Hargraves Community Center.Brouwer’s 8-foot-tall sculpture shows a man climbing a ladder. It’s made out of locust wood, a dense and weather-resistant lumber.“As traditional lore says, it lasts 100 years,” Brouwer said.Brouwer said he also mixes natural trunks and branches in his works along with locust wood sheets produced in sawmills to comment on mankind’s impact on nature.“It reminds us we can be both natural and unnatural in a way,” he said.Installations of the sculptures are still ongoing and are expected to conclude in December.This year, the town increased the amount sculptors were paid to transport, install and loan their work from $1,000 to $1,500 due to newly available funds in the Parks and Recreation Department’s budget.York said this increased the applicant pool and gave the selection committee a variety to choose from.Gretchen Lothrop, a sculptor from Pittsboro, will have her 13-foot-tall, stainless steel sculpture “Grove” installed in early December on the grounds of the Robert and Pearl Seymour Center.Lothrop, who had a sculpture previously exhibited in the 2006-07 series, said “Grove” is difficult to transport because of its height.“I need a crane to move it, so I tend not to move it unless it’s going to be a good show,” Lothrop said. Lothrop said her sculpture was influenced by the enchanted grove in Kenneth Grahame’s book “The Wind in the Willows” and plays on the idea of groves as sanctuaries.She said she uses stainless steel in all of her sculptures.“It has a quality of purity and otherworldliness,” Lothrop said. “It reflects what’s around it.”Viewers are encouraged to let each piece speak to them in its own way.“I hope that people are inspired to let their minds wander a little bit,” Lothrop said. “Let their own feelings come to them.”Contact the Arts Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Andrea Barrett, a 2003 Pulitzer Prize-nominated author famed for her historical fiction, will give the last public reading as part of the Creative Writing Program’s new Living Writers course today.“Most of her works are about the past and particularly focus on 19th-century scientists,” said Pam Durban, professor of the course.“I chose her to show students what’s possible in writing.”In preparation for Barrett’s visit, the class analyzed the different viewpoints, historical fiction context and the introduction of characters in her short story collection, “Ship Fever: Stories.”“It would be interesting to see what she has to say about what historical fiction has to offer as opposed to any other genre,” said Kristofer Nilles, a junior English major, who is in the class.Barrett, a MacArthur Fellow and award winning author, has written six novels, including her latest, “The Air We Breathe.”The Living Writers course was based on a class taught at Colgate University by the late Frederick Busch.In the class at UNC, students read the works of four established authors and then interacted with these authors during a class discussion, luncheon and public reading.Durban was one of the authors who visited and interacted with the students at Colgate.“I took his idea and modified it for here,” she said of bringing the class to UNC.Past guest authors for this semester included short story and memoir writer Tobias Wolff, Southern writer Cary Holladay and short-fiction writer Stuart Dybek. “I wanted to get a variety of writers, not just people who write the same kind of fiction,” Durban said.Students said it was interesting to be exposed to the different ways authors approached their craft.“Stuart Dybek said he carries a little notebook with him, called his ‘great thoughts notebook,’ and Pam Durban gave us an assignment to keep track of our own,” Nilles said.Wolff also shared an anecdote about being inspired to write a story about his childhood after hearing a clock ticking at a parent-teacher conference.“More than likely, they won’t all inspire stories,” Nilles said about the new ideas he learned. “But some of them might.”Contact the Arts Editor at email@example.com.
Some people cherish their nicknames. Cuban printmaker Eduardo “Choco” Roca Salazar, a current visiting artist at UNC’s art department, didn’t cherish his at first.“When I was thirteen, one of my peers at school gave me the name ‘chocolate,’ after a boxer named Chocolatico Pérez,” he said.“I begged people not to call me that, but somehow it stuck.”He eventually started signing his work under the name Chocolate, later shortening it to Choco.He added that everyone he knows calls him Choco — even the mailman.“I would get letters mailed to Eduardo Choco, but the mailman asked, ‘What was your other last name?’ Choco just stuck,” he said. Salazar’s studio in Havana is considered one of the most important in the world, said Beth Grabowski, art department assistant chairwoman.He has won Cuban and international awards for his collagraphs — collage-like works in which materials are applied to a wood or cardboard surface.“I wanted to touch it,” said senior studio art major Kristen Lineberger of his work. “It’s so tactile. It’s got great texture.”Salazar’s art can be found in museum collections around the world. His two most famous patrons include the artist’s friends Fidel and Raúl Castro. “My work tends to be about everyday stuff, like the colors you see in Old Havana, the textures you see on the walls and the mood you get when you see them,” he said. Though not a religious man, he understands religion’s importance to Cubans and uses it in his art.“In the show, you see a lot of heads that have glowing color, often very regal profiles and gestures,” Grabowski said.“He’s honoring his people in the way he’s depicting them.”During a typical day at work, Salazar said he usually gets stressed in the morning and hides in his studio, spending three to four hours working on his craft.“I have a table that nobody can touch,” he said. “That’s where I stick things, where I sleep, where I dream and where I hone in all of these ideas.”At UNC, he has taught art students techniques he learned for printing and plate-making.“It’s nice to see a new artist work, especially in a media that’s not as popular of a concentration on campus,” said junior Natalia Davila, a studio art major.Salazar said his main goal has been to expose as many people as possible to his work and Cuban culture.“I just want people all over the world to know about the Cuban people,” he said.The public is invited to observe Salazar at work from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays through Wednesday at the Hanes Art Center’s John C. Henry Print Studio. His work is also on display on the first floor of the art center.Contact the Arts Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Due to an reporting error, this story misstated which day Chuck D spoke on campus. He appeared Monday. The Daily Tar Heel apologizes for the error.
After the passing of UNC alumnus Sidney Siegel, ’39, art enthusiast Shirley Siegel said she wanted to give something back to the University he loved.“My husband was an amateur sculptor,” she said Sunday. “He loved Chapel Hill and was particularly fond of the Ackland and small museums.”After looking at various pieces in galleries in New York with Ackland Art Museum Director Emily Kass, she came across “Sentinel II,” a work by early 20th century sculptor Seymour Lipton.“I sent my son down to see it and he said, ‘Mom, this looks interesting,’” she said.She sat in attendance Sunday afternoon at the Hanes Art Center auditorium as Kass and Curator of Collections Timothy Riggs inaugurated the exhibition surrounding Lipton’s sculpture: “The Guardian and the Avant-Garde: Seymour Lipton’s Sentinel II in Context.”“Sentinel II,” the exhibition’s centerpiece item, will help build the museum’s small collection of 20th century sculpture.“We wanted to see what kind of thread there was, what kind of story it would tell,” Kass said.Riggs said Lipton, a professional dentist, seemed interested in metal sculpture, metalwork and discovering different ways of using the material other than traditional casting.“If he were still around today, I would love to ask him if there was any input from his initial career into his work as a sculptor,” he said.Lipton began as a social realist woodcarver before moving into more abstract styles of art, Kass said.“He is an artist who is beginning to be investigated again,” Kass said.The exhibition explores myth and the role of the guardian figure throughout history, as well as the rise of American modernism in the early 20th century.Entries range from an Egyptian amulet from 600 B.C. to a more modern print of Mao Tse Dong by Andy Warhol, and include paintings, drawings, etchings and photographs as well as sculptures.Riggs chose all of the mythical, guardian-related entries, while Kass selected all of the American modernist entries.“We don’t know if Lipton ever saw any one of the objects in our gallery, but we do know he was interested in various kinds of art,” Riggs said.He added that Lipton’s art also might have been influenced by visits to museums like the American Museum of Natural History in New York.Dennis Hermanson, a graphic designer from Hillsborough who attended the talk, said he came to the exhibit because he grew up admiring Picasso’s avant-garde works and psychadelic art.He said he was interested in aesthetics and art, and also the way many people thought avant-garde took away the beauty of traditional art.“If you take away beauty, form and content, what do you have? The avant-garde answers that question,” Hermanson said.UNC art history professor Susan Harbor Page said she will incorporate the exhibit into her photography classes because of the inclusion of photographic pieces. “Kass is reinserting it into conversation,” she said of photography as art.Siegel said she hopes the Ackland’s new addition will give viewers an introduction to an unfamiliar form of art. “I think that not many people are familiar with sculpture. If you go to New York, you see a lot of sculpture; down in the Southeast there really isn’t a lot of it,” Siegel said.Hermanson said he had not seen the exhibit before attending the talk, but was planning to visit afterward.“I wish that more people would come out,” Hermanson said. “Even though it’s a college regional museum, it has national museum quality. It’s a beautiful place.”Contact the Arts Editor at email@example.com.
Some study the intricacies of the African diaspora as an academic subject, but one film series will work the matter into a relaxing lunchtime discussion.“It’s a ‘chill-out’ time,” said Ursula Littlejohn, program coordinator of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center, which hosts the 2009 Hekima Film Discussion Series.“We hope it will be a small oasis in the middle of a hectic day,” she said.The event’s first short film, “Kwame,” chronicles the struggles of an exiled former Ghanian Army captain living in Los Angeles. Organizers expect the screening and discussion to last an hour.The series consists of two other short films about the dislocation, relocation and diaspora of Africans. Lunch will be provided at all showings.All three films are short — the longest runs 27 minutes — and all were discovered on the film festival circuit.The Stone Center also offers additional film series, such as the Diaspora Festival of Black and Independent Film.Littlejohn said that she and some of the Stone Center staff often have their own lunch and discussion while reviewing potential film selections.Stone Center Director Joseph Jordan said he scouted out films at festivals such as the Hollywood Black Film Festival and the Washington, D.C., African Diaspora Film Series. “We want to have a good amount of documentary material that allows faculty, students and staff a different perspective based on research,” he said.Littlejohn has reached out to pertinent student and academic groups, such as the Black Student Movement and Organization of African Students’ Interests and Solidarity, as well as the Latina/o Studies program.“For you to engage with other people and view films from a different culture or ethnic background opens your mind in a different way,” she said.Jordan said he hopes the event makes an impact on the community.“I’m hoping they come with questions and ideas, and I hope they leave with the same thing,” he said. “If we’re really good, I hope they leave with some answers.”Contact the Arts Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a man who ran his own student laundry service in college, started his own technology company and competed on the “Amazing Race,” fashion was foreign territory — especially shoes.“I didn’t know anything about retail or fashion,” said Blake Mycoskie, founder and “chief shoe- giver” of TOMS Shoes, in a speech Wednesday.He explained to an overflowing Gerrard Hall that he was inspired to start up his company to help impoverished children while in Argentina.The idea for TOMS Shoes was sparked by a conversation with American volunteers in a Buenos Aires cafe.They told him they were involved in a shoe drive, and soon afterward, he found himself in a little van with strangers carrying boxes of slightly-used shoes.“I saw these volunteers, and they had such a passion,” he said. “I was like, man, I want to help these people out.”Instead of starting a charity, Mycoskie decided to start a for-profit company that gives a pair of shoes away for every pair sold.Mycoskie initially struggled to sell his shoes at small boutiques. After consulting with his female friends, he dragged duffel bags of TOMS into girly boutiques.Since then, his shoes have been featured in Vogue, the L.A. Times, and a series of AT&T commercials. They have been worn by Scarlett Johansson, Keira Knightley and the band Hanson.Mycoskie said Hanson was his favorite of the company’s celebrity fans. While working with the band in a remote African village, he said they would sit around playing “Mmm Bop.”Freshman Jessica Springer said she was impressed with the company’s “One for One” concept that emphasizes giving shoes away.“It’s sort of a ‘no-no’ in business — so it’s amazing he took that risk and is helping people all over the world,” she said.Helene Kirschke-Schwartz, a freshmen who paints her own pairs of the shoes, said she was inspired to buy more TOMS after visiting Ghana last summer.“I had one pair when I went to Africa,” she said. “And when I came back, I bought five more.”Shannon Ward of Solteria, a clothing store in Elon, became a TOMS retailer in March.“Demand’s high,” he said. “We keep a wait list.”Although both are high sellers, women’s TOMS shoes have outsold the men’s styles at Solteria, Ward said.There is a screening of “For Tomorrow,” the TOMS shoes documentary, at 7 p.m. on Sept. 29 in Gardner Hall, room 105.Mycoskie concluded by challenging students to stand out in their own ways.“At this stage in your life, anything is possible,” he said.Contact the Arts Editor at email@example.com.