We’re celebrating artist Romare Bearden’s September 2nd birthday with a collage-making workshop! Designed for enthusiasts of all ages and levels, local mixed-media artist Monique Luck will guide workshop participants as they create an original work of art. Collage is a technique using an assemblage of diverse materials and media which can include newspaper, magazines, fabric, paint, photographs and other found materials in different forms and shapes to create a finished composition. We’ll provide the supplies. You provide your imagination.


Monique Luck creates soulful and wonderfully lyrical images, modeling the features of figures and natural forms using fragments of found paper. Luck began using paper to create art after teaching a collage workshop for kids. She had recently finished a 2,000 square foot mural and needed a break from painting. She fell in love with the process and has incorporated paper in her work ever since.

In 2012, Luck was the grand prize winner of the Bearden-inspired collage contest hosted by the Mint Museum to coincide with the city-wide celebration of Charlotte’s native son. Most recently, she won the museum purchase award at the Carrol Harris Simms Biennial Exhibition. As a result, her work is represented in the permanent collection of the African American Museum, Dallas.

Luck also creates public art. In Pittsburgh, she painted murals for the August Wilson Center, the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts and the Sprout Fund. Locally, she was an Art Pop Billboard winner in 2014, received a commission from the Cornelius Community Garden and, in 2016, completed an installation for the Gantt Center in the new Renaissance West Community.

The self-taught award-winning artist and muralist has exhibited at galleries and museums across the globe. Her work is available for purchase in the Harvey B. Gantt Center Museum Store.


Romare Bearden took snippets of Harlem life and shot them through with vivid images of the American South. His family left Mecklenburg County in 1914 when he was a toddler, and he grew up in the heart of the Harlem Renaissance. Family friends included luminaries such as Langston Hughes, W.E.B. DuBois and famous musicians who helped ignite Bearden's passion for jazz. One of his first patrons would be Duke Ellington. Much later, he designed a record cover for Wynton Marsalis.

Bearden's primary medium was the collage, fusing painting, magazine clippings, old paper and fabric, like a jigsaw puzzle in upheaval. But unlike a puzzle, each piece of a Bearden collage has a meaning and history all its own. Shortly before he died in 1988, Bearden said working with fragments of the past brought them into the now.

"When I conjure these memories, they are of the present to me," he explained. "Because after all, the artist is a kind of enchanter in time." – The Art of Romare Bearden, NPR, 2003

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Image credits: John D. Simmons