‘Fresh2Death: Urban Outsiders’ will feature a bounty of music, art and activities in NoDa

By Cameron Lee 

March 13, 2023 (updated)

Photo: Bryant Lindsay (@ShotByLindsay)

Since its early days inside the NoDa at 28th Street building, Dupp&Swat, owned by siblings Davita and Dion Galloway, has always served as a meeting place for artists, designers, and organizers in the city since 2010. Davita’s ambitions for the retail space grew more out of necessity for her work as a fashion consultant, needing space for photo shoots and costuming work, but the Galloways always wanted to utilize it to serve as a hub for Black artists. 

“Once we opened those doors, so many different creatives just flew in and honestly, we feel like we’ve been able to sustain ourselves over a decade now, because we are integral, central, to the creative community. They helped build what we are,” said Davita. 

Dion and Davita Galloway, co-founders of Dupp&Swat and Fresh2Death. Photo: Bryant Lindsay (@ShotByLindsay)

Now located in Camp North End, Dupp&Swat has blossomed into a brand that hosts art exhibits, fashion shows, workshops, and activations, incorporating the many creatives the Galloways have drawn into their network. Fresh2Death, a street fashion exhibit and event series the Galloways started in May of 2022 in the Mint5pace at the Mint Museum Uptown, continues to showcase their collective efforts.

Their third iteration, Fresh2Death: Urban Outsiders, on March 19, follows their recent Graphic GarMINT exhibit that featured 11 graphic artists from the city, and the wildly successful Kiki Ball 101 performance in collaboration with the Mint Museum in February. Much like their most recent Fresh2Death event, StreetWhere in September, Urban Outsiders will feature art installations, local vendors, food trucks, and workshops. 

F4mily Matters activation from 2022 Fresh2Death: StreetWhere in September. Photo: Bryant Lindsay (@ShotByLindsay)

The concept for Fresh2Death was conceived in the same spirit that Dupp&Swat is rooted in: community. The Galloways aim to provide a safe space and platform for many Black creatives in the city to foster their skills and display their work. 

“We were trying to figure out a way to showcase our people of color…our contributions to culture overall, while also providing a platform for local artists and local designers,” said Dion. 

For Davita, it’s also a way to flex her own artistry more intentionally: “People rarely have gotten to see, like our art, our form of expression, so that also inspired Fresh2Death.” 

Dion and Davita Galloway, co-founders of Dupp&Swat and Fresh2Death. Photo: Bryant Lindsay (@ShotByLindsay)

Taking place at Neighborhood Theatre, Fresh2Death: Urban Outsiders, is shaping up to be their grandest production to date. With 15 to 20 artists, a festival-style music lineup, workshops, poetry, horseback riding, and five artistic selfie landscapes, it will be a spectacle. 

“We’re bringing in plants and trees, we’re bringing in fake snow, we have artists who are painting like a backdrop to kind of ground and set the scenes. We’re bringing in different props,” said Davita. 

The music portion of the event, in partnership with Blumenthal Performing Arts and We Are Hip Hop, is particularly impressive with Charlotte’s own Jamla/Roc Nation rapper Reuben Vincent headlining the festival. Queen City-based neo-soul songstress Cyanca also tops the bill along with rappers Well$, Phaze Gawd, Indigo Jo, and DJs Dexter Dynamite, Micki Blendz, and Pauly Guwop, among many more talented acts. 

With vendors spread throughout the venue, there will also be workshops that are a part of the “Fresh Ed” portion of the festival, from a graffiti class by artist and educator Ricky Singh to printing demos by Malaysha Bolton of Malaysian Ink. The Charlotte Cowboys, a Black cowboy and cowgirl collective, will be on site with horses and ponies to pet and ride around the neighborhood.


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The event is completely interactive and will feel like a carnival of sorts, with scavenger hunts, poetry by Concrete Generation, and food trucks.

“Come with an open mind. We call it Urban Outsiders because…we want people to just come out, have a good time, unplug, disconnect and really enjoy the physical space and each other,” said Davita. 

Fresh2Death: Urban Outsiders will take place from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday, March 19 at Neighborhood Theatre. Music will start at 12 p.m. and tickets are $20, which will grant full access to the event grounds for the live music, vendors, workshops, and horseback riding

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