Waxing Quixotic

Categories: ASC, Blog, Community Supported Art

By Amy Bareham
Cultural & Community Investment Intern

If ever you need to be reminded of your invincibility,

Pam Winegard.
Pam Winegard.

’s studio is the place to go. A practicing studio artist for the last 13 years and a Fall 2014 Arts & Science Council Community Supported Art (CSA) participant, Winegard’s art career began at six years old, when she placed her first piece of artwork on her grandmother’s refrigerator. That drawing, a purple horse with a pink mane, was the catalyst for Winegard’s life as a creative.

“I have a really eclectic background,” she says. From a brief stint in the U.S. Army, to working for the U.S. government, and even to resuming school as a graduate student, Winegard feels she has always been in a creative environment of sorts. She welcomes the interdisciplinary nature of art, especially in the classroom, where she teaches college art classes.

With degrees in graphic design and painting, as well as a commercial art career, Winegard certainly has the qualifications to bolster art’s reputation, but even better, she has the perspective, too. In fact, Winegard’s wisdom is refreshingly honest and simple.

“My biggest advice to anyone,” she says, “is you can’t check out. You’ve got to be engaged in your local community.”

Winegard trusts that Charlotte knows how to take care of herself.

An example of Pam Winegard's work.
An example of Pam Winegard’s work.

“The thing about the Charlotte art scene is…the people who are here sometimes can’t see the forest for the trees,” she said. “I came from a place that did not have any art. It was sort of an armpit actually…

“I think that there are a lot of innovative thinkers in the Charlotte art scene. The only drawback sometimes…is that people are going so fast they forget to talk to each other. [But] there are a lot of plusses and a lot of wonderful things that are going on.”

Pam also champions the power of the average art enthusiast. She acknowledges the need for major donors in the cultural sector, but cites CSA as an example of art for the people, by the people.

“All those people are excited about the packages they’re getting. That’s the clue. $500 is not a lot of money to spend on 9 pieces of art. It’s the anticipation, it’s belonging, it’s sort of this look what I’ve done, getting to know people, part of something feeling. Being a part of the cultural moment.”

If we can absorb what it means to be a part of the cultural moment, we can rediscover our passion for the arts, in light of any momentary setbacks.

Pam Winegard's work.
Pam Winegard’s work.

For fall 2014 CSA shareholders, Winegard created 50 mixed media pieces, inspired by flora she shot at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. She wanted a project that connected with some aspect of the community and liked what she calls “the garden idea.”

“There are all these plants that are the same but they’re all different, too,” she explained. From the photos, Winegard makes sketches which are then transformed into encaustic monotypes. The final product has a unique blend of color, texture and design.

Thankful for the opportunity to expand out in the community and connect with the ASC, Winegard ended our time together by teaching me the art of waxing quixotic.

“It means that you just tilt at windmills,” she said. “You want something to happen, you feel optimistic that you can take down any obstacle…You can break down these walls and make people less competitive and work for the common good. I just believe you can.”

Wax quixotic with us and take a peek at Pam’s studio.