Artist: Gabriel Eng-Goetz

Artist Gabriel Eng-Goetz was chosen to create a mural for the Burke County Arts Council’s new location to attract more pedestrian traffic to the growing arts and business district south of downtown. Morganton is home to North Carolina School for the Deaf; Broughton Hospital and J. Iverson Riddle Developmental Center. The mural celebrates Morganton’s history of welcoming people of all abilities, the diversity of cultures of residents, and the weaving and hand-work traditions of its citizens. The North Carolina Museum of Art is developing outreach activities connected to the work.

After weeks of community engagement with Burke County residents, themes of nature, history, storytelling and diversity emerged as important elements to include in the Burke Arts Council mural. Artist Gabriel Eng-Goetz’s focus on textiles weaves these themes together using two sets of hands that stitch the past and present across layers of embroidered fabric. Starting with the history of the textile industry in Burke County, moving through the generations and transcending multiple cultures, the mural includes all types of people, lifestyles, livelihoods and nature. Textiles have the strong ability to tell a story - in particular among embroidery, which uses narrative, illustrative elements to connect culture. From a distance the viewer can see a vast mountain range and lake horizon, and upon closer inspection the history and people of Burke County come to life in the details, ideally presenting an inclusive future of progress and acknowledgment.

506 S Sterling St.
Morganton, NC 28655