Photo Credit: Gil Croy

Artist Gil Croy says he never thought his Human Canvas project would grow to encompass so many others and gain the support it’s received from The LGBT Community Center of Charlotte and the Pride Charlotte Festival, slated for Uptown on Aug. 27.

“It grew into a much larger project from a planned art show just at The Center,” Croy says. “It started growing and started to become connected to artists all over our area, throughout the nation and even world.”

Croy says artists in San Francisco, New York, the Caribbean and in South America and Australia have indicated interest in the showing — one that’s guaranteed to make a splash on the streets of Uptown Charlotte.

Croy and his team of volunteer, communtiy artists have teamed up with The Center’s StillOut Photography club to present art across a wide range of mediums — photography, painting, videography — in the Wells Fargo Atrium during the Pride Charlotte Festival. Outside, a tent will house a working exhibit, where artists will be creating new masterpieces, doing body painting and more. Models painted in what Croy calls a “Pride Tribe” theme — “natives” in “Pride colors,” he says — will walk around the festival as living, breathing, moving art exhibits.

“The collaboration [between these groups] has worked out beautifully,” he says of the partnerships involved in the inclusion of such an art-focused attraction at the festival.

The effort at the Uptown festival is meant to raise awareness of the commitment The Center has placed on community art. Croy’s Human Canvas exhibit opened on Friday, Aug. 19, the beginning of Pride Charlotte Week, and will continue through October. This fall, he says, a family-oriented exhibit exploring and celebrating the lives of local, LGBT families will also open at The Center.

“We’ve all joined forces in this creative, collaborative journey,” Croy says. “The result is a collection of inspiring, thought-provoking photographs and other artwork inspired by the LGBT community — our thoughts, dreams, loves, political views and passions. It’s all so diverse and it’s amazing.” : :

— Ed. Note: This writer is a member of the Pride Charlotte organizing committee.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.