Artist Dustin Spagnola works on a mural at The Prospect Tuesday afternoon off Buxton Avenue. Spagnola's work is inspired by the contemporary urban landscape. / Erin Brethaueremail@example.com to full article in the asheville citizen times
- FILED UNDER
n an unusual Tuesday in Dustin Spagnola's world, he is talking rather than creating.
Inside his studio on Haywood Road, he lounges in a lawn chair for an hour and a half to assess aesthetics. His disarrayed dark hair compliments his untucked plaid shirt and his cluttered workspace filled with various paintings — some finished, some not.
While he may strive for excellence, Spagnola says, “In art, perfection does not exist.”
Rather than disown the weathered walls of the concrete buildings on which he often paints building-size murals, Spagnola embraces their natural imperfections and incorporates them into his work.
“I like the ways old buildings look. I like the way rust looks. I like graffiti. I like street art. I like public art,” he said. “I like the way that we have the ability to push ideas outside of a commercial space.”
And for the past three years throughout the Asheville area, Spagnola, 30, has endeavored to promote inspirational ideas through his murals and paintings.
Whirlwind of work
Fortunate for Spagnola, who grew up in New York and Florida, Asheville has afforded many opportunities to share his talents.
In honor of Black History Month this year, the Asheville Mural Project, of which Spagnola is a part, sought to complete numerous murals of influential black Americans.
Spagnola and six other artists spent the first two weeks of February adorning the boarded-up windows at the intersection of Eagle and Market streets with paintings of people including Maya Angelou, Martin Luther King Jr., Wilma Rudolph, Harriet Tubman and Dred Scott, among others.
“We try to be sensitive to the history of the area,” said Ian Wilkinson, Asheville Mural Project director. “We try to magnify elements of culture that may be overlooked.”
Simultaneously, AMP desires to beautify areas of the community that need attention.
“We are seeking to strengthen areas of the community (and) to develop community bonds,” Wilkinson said. “Mural arts are a way to transform space. … Our mission is to transform.”