Established in 2013, Latin American Contemporary Art (LaCa) Projects has locations in Charlotte and Buenos Aires. The gallery's mission is to use this unique combination of settings to create a gateway for connecting contemporary Latin American artists with the increasingly diversifying arts scene of Charlotte, as well as to provide a location in the Southeast region of the United States for art collectors to develop and foster an appreciation for the visually striking narrative of contemporary Latin American art.
Here, we speak with Managing Director, Neely Verano, about LaCa’s values and what it seeks to deliver to all facets of our community.
LaCa Projects so generously sponsored RunningWorks’ nonprofit membership this past year. What do you want the community to know about their work?
The definition of empowerment is as follows: the process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights. I believe the single most important tenant of RunningWorks’ mission is the organization’s focus on empowerment of others. When you empower someone, through relationship, through health and wellness, and through guided opportunity as are the programs of RunningWorks, that individual begins to see their own potential. This is what is required to break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.
Philanthropy seems to be weaved into the heart the gallery. How have you blended the mission of connecting contemporary Latin American artists with the local needs and passions of the community?
I have never felt that philanthropy and success in business are mutually exclusive. We have made service to others the core of our work, and this extends beyond our clients and art dealing. As a small business that champions diversity, we have both a unique opportunity and responsibility to play a role in this community and to give back. We are all connected. As a business that benefits from this city in so many ways, we must not ignore the most pressing issues of our community—homelessness being one—and determine how we can affect change through our business model and the way we behave as citizens, as arts leaders, and as role models for others. This inspires change for good, and at the end of the day, it is not our profits that define our business or our ability to inspire—it’s our values.
LaCa has a reputation of being approachable and accessible to many who otherwise feel intimidated by art. Was that an intentional priority, or did it happen more organically?
This has been intentional and important to us from day one, and we “walk that talk.” With opening a new business comes the opportunity to do things differently from what has been accepted as “standard” or “typical” in the industry. Our partnerships, our dynamic business model, our focus on education, and our passionate voices reflect our belief that the arts should reflect the diversity of our global community and be accessible to all.
Last year, you welcomed Basal Coffee at LaCa. How has the addition of a cafe enriched the work and mission of the gallery?
As mentioned earlier, galleries have developed a reputation for being exclusive and unwelcoming. We knew from the start that having a cafe partner who shares our values would create a dynamic, multi-faceted cultural organization. The level of cross-cultural exchange, foot traffic through the gallery, and experiences inside the gallery we’ve been able to offer has been unprecedented since joining forces with Basal Coffee. I am so proud of our partnership and the mutually beneficial nature of our marriage.
LaCa Projects presents its annual collective exhibition, featuring work by 5 artists who’ve participated in solo or group exhibitions since the gallery’s founding in 2013. Presenting a distinctive array of genres and honoring the gallery’s commitment to both a breadth and depth of style, the exhibition serves to highlight seminal paintings, works on paper, and photographs that best contextualize the artists' work and artistic practice.
Long time Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden supporters, Pam Stowe and Pam Warlick, co-chaired the inaugural “Hats in the Garden” Luncheon last month. For the two Pams, their commitment to the Garden honors family legacies, while the event itself was a nod to the glamorous evolution of this regional asset.
How did you become involved with Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden? Why is it important to you?
Pam Stowe: My husband Harding’s uncle, Daniel Stowe, started the botanical garden 20 years ago. Because of Dan, we became involved with the garden early on. I chaired the opening gala. Harding is chairman of the board and I’m on the Art in the Garden task force, so we both stay very in tune.
Pam Warlick: The creation of DSBG by Daniel Stowe was such an incredible gift to Gaston County and the surrounding area. My father, Duke Kimbrell was a friend of Mr. Stowe's and he was appreciative and supportive of his vision. As a family, we watched the Garden grow and prosper. My father was a long time trustee and following his passing in 2014, I was asked to join the Board. I feel honored to continue my father's enthusiasm and support of this treasure in our community.
What was your vision for Hats in the Garden?
PS: I’ve been lucky enough to attend the Central Park Conservancy hat luncheon in New York several times. It’s one of the mostly beautifully orchestrated events I’ve ever attended. I wanted Hats in the Garden to have the same feel and same level of “specialness”.
PW: The idea grew out of the Arts Task force committee formed in 2018. Our goal is to focus on acquiring art and promoting the arts throughout the Garden. This group of talented ladies stepped up and Hats in the Garden was born! Our goals are serious but the luncheon is all about friends, fun and some fundraising.
You both are so actively involved with so many facets of the community. How do you choose what to say yes to when it comes to giving of your time and resources?
PS: I used to say yes to almost any “cause” that came along. Now that I’m older, I only participate in events/causes that speak to me personally- and that are enjoyable!
PW: I feel I am most effective when I follow my passion. The friendships and people you meet along the way are an added bonus.
What is your earliest memory of giving back?
PS: My father was extremely involved in many aspects of the small community in which I grew up, so giving back was modeled for me. I remember spending Saturdays with Daddy sorting through imperfect shoes at the Converse tennis shoe factory, making pairs to give to the many families who needed shoes.
PW: As with many children, I began giving back through church, scouts and school community service projects. My family set the example of serving others.
How did you attempt to instill the importance of community and philanthropy in your children when they were younger?
PS: The best way to teach is through action, and our children saw us spending time on fundraising and other charitable activities. For example, I delivered Friendship Trays for 15 years while my children were growing up, and as school schedules allowed, they accompanied me- not always eagerly. But they learned from the experience!
PW: My father is still our inspiration for philanthropy. His daily blessing ended, "give us thankful hearts and help others".
We’re big on giving local, so it only makes sense to shop local! What are you favorite local businesses?
PS: My dear friend Laura Vinroot Poole owns three wonderful shops in Charlotte- Capitol, Poole Shop, and Tabor- so those are high on my list. I also absolutely love CLTCH, Boris and Natasha, and The Frock Shop, all in Plaza-Midwood, and all locally owned, by friends.
Don’t miss Grandiflora: Gamrath Glass at the Garden, on exhibit now thru September at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. In celebration of its 20th anniversary, the awe-inspiring, larger-than-life botanical glass exhibit, features vibrant sculptures by Seattle-based artist Jason Gamrath including towering 10-foot orchids, vivid pitcher plants, energetic Venus flytraps and more.
We asked readers for their real thoughts and feelings about fundraising events and they gave us just that! And here are the results…..
Keri and Nick Clavin, MD haven’t been in Charlotte long, but they sure have put their stamp on the community since they arrived from New York in 2013. And last month might have been their busiest and most impactful on record. Keri co-chaired the Mint Museum Auxiliary Room to Bloom Spring Symposium while Nick competed in Dancing With The Stars of Charlotte for The Pink House.
Nick, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon with Levine Cancer Institute, also serves on the board of Charlotte Lab School where their children Hudson and Harper attend. If you happen to mention his name within earshot of one of his patients, they’ll tell you - unsolicited - how he’s changed their lives forever. Trust us, it’s happened to us twice.
With such an intimate understanding of how breast cancer affects the lives of Nick’s patients, Keri also serves on the board of Carolina Breast Friends. Here, she shares with us how they balance family and community, their Charlotte role models, how they try to model and infuse gratitude in their children, and why we should take an Amazon break when we can…Read More
Last year, NewDominion Bank called us and said they loved what we were doing in the community and they wanted to be involved. They became a Community Supporter, and sponsored Crisis Assistance Ministry’s membership and inclusion in our Giving Book. Here, we talk with CEO, Blaine Jackson about the Bank’s very proactive and “handcrafted” role in the community.
In addition to serving as counsel at McGuire Woods and mother to four children under 10 years old, Elissa Moore also counts herself as an avid supporter of NC MedAssist. Here, she tells us why she cares, why others should too, how she’s weaving a philanthropic spirit into her family, and where to get the best coffee in Charlotte (and it’s not in a restaurant).Read More
This paid, part-time internship will produce video and photography content for social media and other marketing channels.
The ideal intern MUSTS:
- Video production and editing skills
- Social media savvy
- Interest in giving back to the community
Big Bonus Points for those with:
- Photography and photo editing skills
- Graphic design capabilities
If this sounds like you, send an email to email@example.com with:
1) Links to video clips you’ve created
2) Photography/graphic design portfolio if available
3) Your current school and grade or year
We are in the throws of Giving Book production, which means we are swimming in photos.
As we rummage through images for the best representations of our nonprofit members, I keep a real life experience in mind.
Director of Member Marketing
The Society Guide is a membership-based program for nonprofits that works to connect our members with high net worth donors and their advisors.
The Director of Member Marketing’s goal is to cultivate opportunities for our nonprofit members to introduce their organization to people and businesses in the community. The Director will identify PR and media opportunities, existing meetings/events (social, associations, clubs, etc.) to forge charitable partnerships, as well as help cultivate opportunities with small businesses (retail, fitness, etc) who might wish to align with charitable organizations.
The Director will also assist with the planning and execution our own events (two per year).
Ideal candidates will:
- Be well connected in the Charlotte community
- Have PR and event experience
- Familiarity with the Charlotte nonprofit community and fundraising/philanthropic landscape
- Be an active social media user
- Have insightful ability to match our nonprofit members with the right audience/opportunities for mutually beneficial experiences
- Self-starter with ability to work remotely and independently
Contact Amanda Pagliarini Howard to discuss further, highlighting compatibility with our ideal candidate points.
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