Shaun Cassidy is one of the most respected artists in the region. He is a much-loved professor at Winthrop University and has been lauded for his contributions to public art around North and South Carolina. His gallery-scaled works are just as spectacular, earning him the title of HappeningCLT’s current Carolina Art Crush.
HCLT: Describe yourself in three words.
SC: An enthusiastic maker.
HCLT: When did you realize you were an artist?
SC: I knew I wanted to be an artist from the moment I first touched clay at age thirteen. The material and my interaction with it took me to a new place – and resulted in some very ugly teapots.
HCLT: Who or what inspires you artistically?
SC: I am inspired by both the history of sculpture and the diverse range of contemporary approaches to the discipline. I get particularly inspired by travelling and being immersed in a depth of feeling and freshness of seeing that one experiences in a new place.
HCLT: Tell us about your current body of work?
SC: This new body of work entitled The Sound of Everything was made over the last two years. It focuses on the associations of sound, form, color, and implied movement.
HCLT: What do you think is the most valuable art experience in the Carolinas right now?
SC: I think Ned Khan’s shimmering reflecting light wall on West Trade Street is a memorable experience and a great work of art.
HCLT: What is your number one art piece/place/event in this area?
SC: Without question it is seeing the spider lilies in full bloom at Landsford State Canal Park in Chester. It is a breath taking experience.
HCLT: What book is on your nightstand right now?
SC: Mary Oliver, New and Selected Poems Volume Two (Editor: me too Shaun!)
HCLT: Best meal in the Charlotte area?
HCLT: Where can we see your work?
SC: This new body of work will be on display at Central Piedmont Community College’s Overcash Gallery beginning March 16th with an opening reception on March 26th at 6pm. (Editor: There will be a lecture on April 16, beginning at 6pm in Tate Hall, Overcash Building 2nd floor. You won’t want to miss this!)
HCLT: What is up next?
SC: Up next is construction of a public art project for Reid Park, beginning work on the art for McCullough Station for the Blue Line Extension for CATS, and a series of quite small sculptures.