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Winthrop University students’ art featured at new credit union headquarters

From Charlotte Business Journal Article by Ken Elkins, photos by James Sneed

[caption id="attachment_21818" align="alignright" width="250"]Christopher Smalls installs his work, "Transition in Blue," which depicts Rock Hill's transformation from a textile to technology town. Christopher Smalls installs his work, "Transition in Blue," which depicts Rock Hill's transformation from a textile to technology town.[/caption] Lee Gardner believes Family Trust Federal Credit Union may help kindle some careers in the art world by including five students’ work at its new headquarters in Rock Hill. “By working with students from Winthrop University, we not only got meaningful, impactful pieces, but we provided them with a real-world experience that will help launch their art careers,” says the CEO of Family Trust. The credit union opened the doors of the 36,000-square-foot building this week to show off those art installations to members of the media. The headquarters, which will eventually house 60 Family Trust employees, including its administrative team, opens later this year. “We wanted art in our new building to show Family Trust’s ties to textiles and to illustrate our core values and community service,” Gardner adds. “We are so pleased with the results.” Tom Stanley, chair of Winthrop's fine arts department, and Shaun Cassidy, professor of fine arts at the school, are leading the students in the project. [caption id="attachment_21820" align="alignright" width="225"]Nicole Davenport's work, "Shifting Shadows, Constant Care." Nicole Davenport's work, "Shifting Shadows, Constant Care."[/caption] The student artists include:
  • Chelsea Arthur of Greenville is a senior pursuing a bachelor of fine arts in general studio, with emphases in sculpture and jewelry and metals.
  • Nicole Davenport of Anderson is a junior pursuing a degree in general studio, with emphases in sculpture and printmaking.
  • Samantha Oliver of Rock Hill graduated in December with an art degree in ceramics. She is now a non-degree graduate student at Winthrop.
  • Christopher Smalls of Beaufort is a senior pursuing an art degree in jewelry and metals at Winthrop.
  • Kaitlyn Walters of Greenville graduated in December with a BFA in general studio, with emphases in photography and sculpture.
The builder of the Family Trust project is J.M. Cope Construction of Rock Hill. Designers and architects are 505 Design, BB&M Architects and LandDesign, all of Charlotte. Image above: Kaitlyn Walters, with her work "Renew and Restore," made with railroad ties and wood used to build mills. Photo by Stephanie Garrett, FTFCU