Tiff Massey Wins Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Art Commission

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COURTESY OF TIFF MASSEY
Tiff Massey has secured a commission to create artwork for the new main branch of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library.

Tiff Massey will create public artwork for the new Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Main Branch in time for its completion in 2024.

A five-member Artist Selection Committee, made up of Library and Arts and Science Council leaders and chaired by a member of the Public Art Commission, unanimously approved Massey for the project. The artwork is funded in accordance with the Mecklenburg County Public Art Ordinance, which allocates 1% of the total construction budget to eligible capital projects for public art.

Public art initiatives for the county and the city of Charlotte are managed by the Arts and Sciences Council.

“Tiff is an artist with a strong personal vision who excels at expressing her ideas through a variety of mediums and scales of work,” said ASC Vice President for Public Art, Todd Stewart. “His ability to involve others in his creative practice is exemplary.”

Massey, an award-winning interdisciplinary artist, is a 2021 United States Artists Fellow. Her work is inspired by African standards of economic vitality, such as large-scale and portable sculptures, music and performance. Through the lens of the African diaspora, she mixes influences from 1980s hip hop, contemporary observations of class and race, and personal experience as a Detroit native.

“We are pleased to announce that Tiff Massey is the artist chosen to create the public artwork for our new Main Library,” Charlotte Mecklenburg Library CEO and Chief Librarian Marcellus Turner said in a statement. communicated. “We envision his works will add a wonderful dimension to the new Main Library where our entire Mecklenburg community can experience and enjoy them while accessing resources, connecting with others, and participating in our programs and events. .”

ASC will host a virtual community engagement meeting with Massey on June 14 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Residents can learn more about Massey and his artistic process while engaging in dialogue to help shape his concept for new art public from the main library. Pre-registration is required to participate.

The new main library will be built on the same site as the existing one at 310 N. Tryon St. The $100 million, 115,000 square foot project will feature five levels above ground and one below, two outdoor terraces, a active lobby, a vendor-operated cafe, two immersive theaters, meeting space and rooms, and an upgraded Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room.


Groundbreaking is scheduled for early 2022, with completion and opening expected in 2024.

“We learned about the power of Tiff Massey’s work and her ability to bridge cultures and timeframes, which is also what a library’s mission seeks,” said Craig Dykers, founding partner architect of Snøhetta, who designed the new library.

“Tiff’s interdisciplinary explorations are often part of a dialogue between architecture and art. Each room is a unique gateway, opening up new perspectives to all who experience it. We are excited to work together and know that his work will strengthen the library’s mission and design.

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