It makes me proud to introduce you to a very talented, young Charlotte artist that is going places.  

She currently has a solo exhibition at the Chapel Hill Public Library from December 16th through February 28th, so if you happen to find yourself in the area, feel free to check it out!  

I absolutely adore her colorful abstract expressionist works.

Enjoy getting to know

Abigail Ditesheim

Charlotte, North Carolina

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What is your training? 

I received a BFA from Tulane University. I majored in Studio Arts with a focus in Painting and I have a minor in Art History.

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What inspires you and your designs?

Oh, so many things. First and foremost, I look to other artists for inspiration. The first artist I can remember learning of was Georgia O’Keeffe. She was my first favorite. From a young age—probably 7 years old or so—I remember looking at one of my mom’s Georgia O’Keeffe books and being fascinated by the colors she used in her flowers. I am a huge fan of color!

Some of my other favorite artists who’s work I frequently look to for inspiration include Ida Kohlmeyer, Helen Frankenthaler, Cecily Brown, Per Kirkeby, Jered Sprecher, and most recently, Sangram Majudmar.

What is your favorite piece? 

That’s a tough question. I try my hardest to embrace each of my pieces for different reasons because each one leads to the next. One of my favorites is ‘Don’t Mind My Children.’ This was one of my last paintings I made during my senior year at Tulane. It changed many times throughout its process of becoming what it is now—I really wrestled with this one. I learned to love this piece after living with it for a while. I learned to embrace, instead of criticize, what I once saw as imperfections in the piece.

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How has the your area influenced your work?

Charlotte is my home, and I do love it here. Charlotte’s growing art scene inspires and motivates me to keep making abstract art because I think we need more of it in our lives! A few galleries in the area that I love are LaCa Projects, SoCo Gallery, Jerald Melberg Gallery, and Hidell Brooks Gallery. I am so excited for what these fine places have done, are doing, and will do for the Charlotte art scene!

I was also strongly influenced by New Orleans after living there for the past 4 years of college. There is truly no city like New Orleans—rich with unique culture and pure insanity. The craziness of living there challenged me to find myself and my place, much of which I found through art.

What is your favorite restaurant in Charlotte?

Fiamma is amazing. Everything is consistently delicious.

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I also love The Cotton Room at Belfast Mill. It’s a cozy little bar with awesome cocktails and really fun music.

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What is your favorite cocktail?

Gin and tonic + lime is my go-to.

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How do you balance personal life and work?

I force myself to paint. I am very schedule-driven, so I will plan the days I am going to dedicate to painting. I remember towards the end of college, my Advanced Painting professor said to the class, “Once you graduate, you will find every excuse not to paint. Don’t let that happen.” Unfortunately, it’s true. It’s amazing how time just disappears, and before I know it I haven’t painted in days. I make a conscious effort to avoid this. Painting clears my head and keeps me sane. I have to do it.

Dream trip?

Thailand is number one on my list!

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Dream commission?

A series of large canvases for the Whitney Museum of American Art. A girl can dream!!

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Your favorite host / hostess gift to give?

My mom’s beautiful ceramic pieces! A small dish or bowl makes the perfect gift. Who doesn’t love a handcrafted, original piece of art?!

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Who is your style icon?

My grandmother. She wore the coolest pieces. Her style was funky and eclectic yet so sophisticated and put together. I remember her wearing big dangling earrings that looked more like sculptural pieces than jewelry—always 2 different ones that didn’t match. And she could pull it off so well. Also, her signature was her red lipstick. Her look was never complete without it!

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Your favorite up and coming artist?

New Orleans artist Aaron Collier. Aaron was my one of my favorite college professors and mentors at Tulane. I was lucky enough to be his studio intern during one of my last semesters, which allowed me a glimpse into his painting process. I continue to be inspired and fascinated by his abstractions. He’s also a native North Carolinian—we bond over a true love of good art and Bojangles biscuits!

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What is your most treasured possession?

I love to wear family heirloom jewelry. On the night of my first art show, my mom gave me a gold bracelet with blue stones that had belonged my grandmother. She was an amazingly talented interior designer. I know she would have found such joy in seeing what I have done with my love for art, which is something we shared.

What are you reading?

Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan

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What are you listening to?

I just learned about The Steeldrivers, so I’ve been listening to them in the studio lately.

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I am guilty of being a huge Shania Twain and Dixie Chicks fan. Yes, I did go to both of their concerts recently! They’re frequently playing in the studio, too :).

What are your favorite blogs / publications?

I like to search artists on artsy.net. The site will suggest other ‘artists you may like’ based on your searches and follows. It’s a great way to discover new artists when I’m in need of some inspiration.

I recently discovered ‘The Jungalow’ by Justina Blakeney.

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I love how she so creatively mixes different patterns of fabric and wallpaper, awesome vintage finds, plants, and artwork. I also love her book, “The New Bohemian.” She’s just so cool.

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Oh, and I love The English Room, of course! 😉

Works on canvas:

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ditesheim_asortofstonehenge2_2016

ditesheim_2x4diptych1_2016

ditesheim_whathappensbeneaththesurfacecropped_2016

ditesheim_shetriedtolookprettytodaycropped_2016

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ditesheim_floratropic_2016

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beneaththepalms

smallflowers-1

hearts-1

palmsandarchpink-1

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Works on Paper:

ditesheim_checkerssmallpaper_2016

ditesheim_multicolorpaper_2016

ditesheim_forrodandmac1_2016

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Be sure to follow Abigail Ditesheim on her beautiful website with much more of her portfolio and on Instagram too.

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