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Best Of Atlanta 2010 Poets Artists Large


Poets, Artists & Madmen

Atlanta's art scene is on the verge of something significant — teetering between making it and breaking it. Long regarded as a creative hodgepodge, the city's poets, artists and madmen have worked tirelessly in the last year to help redefine the city's artistic identity. They attracted international attention with the colossal grassroots street art conference Living Walls, improved our public art profile with gloATL and Art on the Beltline, and cultivated the kind of TV- and filmmaking-friendly environment that's allowed for the conversion of Lakewood Fairgrounds into a Hollywood-worthy soundstage, and the local filming of AMC's "The Walking Dead." So what does the future hold for the arts in Atlanta? Can we build on the momentum we've recently gained? Judging from the last year's creative outpouring, the scales are tipped in the right direction.

— Debbie Michaud

Best play BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Fair Use
Ironically, Alliance Theatre Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Competition finalist FAIR USE proved to be more felicitous and satisfying than any of the Kendeda's storied winners to date. Actor's Express' Freddie Ashley snapped up Sarah Gubbins' ingenious and witty examination of workplace romance and intellectualmore...
Ironically, Alliance Theatre Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Competition finalist FAIR USE proved to be more felicitous and satisfying than any of the Kendeda's storied winners to date. Actor's Express' Freddie Ashley snapped up Sarah Gubbins' ingenious and witty examination of workplace romance and intellectual property, which demonstrates its own points by turning into a nimble riff on Cyrano de Bergerac for the online, gay-friendly age. Fair Use proves that a play doesn't need historical settings or heavyweight subject matter to explore rich ideas and the nature of relationships. less...

Best play BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Dad's Garage Theatre

Runner-up: Hamlet! The Musical at The New American Shakespeare Tavern


499 Peachtree St., 404-874-5299, www.shakespearetavern.com

Best playwright BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Peter Hardy
As artistic director of Essential Theatre, PETER HARDY has been Atlanta's de facto midwife of new local plays. In the summer of 2010, however, Hardy put the spotlight on his own script, Sally and Glen at the Palace, and the nostalgic dramedy packed enough punch to upstage many of Essential's productionsmore...
As artistic director of Essential Theatre, PETER HARDY has been Atlanta's de facto midwife of new local plays. In the summer of 2010, however, Hardy put the spotlight on his own script, Sally and Glen at the Palace, and the nostalgic dramedy packed enough punch to upstage many of Essential's productions going back for years. www.essentialtheatre.com less...

Best poet BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Paul Guest

Best public art event BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Living Walls: The City Speaks

Best public art performance BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
John Q's Memory Flash
Working with an old house in the historic Old Fourth Ward, a softball field, a vacant lot, and a growth of kudzu behind a strip mall, JOHN Q'S MEMORY FLASH uncovered Atlanta's queer history in the most typical of places. Oral histories from Jolly Twelve member Freddy Styles, drag queen Billy Jones, andmore...
Working with an old house in the historic Old Fourth Ward, a softball field, a vacant lot, and a growth of kudzu behind a strip mall, JOHN Q'S MEMORY FLASH uncovered Atlanta's queer history in the most typical of places. Oral histories from Jolly Twelve member Freddy Styles, drag queen Billy Jones, and softball players from the Atlanta Tomboys informed Memory Flash's installations and performances, and created an unforgettably resonant connection between the past and present. www.fluxprojects.org less...

Best public artwork BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Atlanta Beltline Inc

www.beltline.org


Runner-up: Krog Street Tunnel

Best reason to navigate the urban jungle BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Art on the Beltline
Forget gallery walls, this year artists have been vying for representation in public spaces, most significantly as part of the sprawling, multidisciplinary project ART ON THE BELTLINE. Intended to boost awareness of the size and scope of the proposed 22-mile loop of parks, trails and transit, and itsmore...
Forget gallery walls, this year artists have been vying for representation in public spaces, most significantly as part of the sprawling, multidisciplinary project ART ON THE BELTLINE. Intended to boost awareness of the size and scope of the proposed 22-mile loop of parks, trails and transit, and its potential impact on you and me and our fair city, the multipart exhibit has featured everything from a poignant performance art and installation piece by Hormuz Minina to Jeffry Loy's glowing steel flower pods. www.beltline.org less...

Best sign that Atlanta's a new mini-Hollywood BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
"The Walking Dead"
Between Tyler Perry's Atlanta-based media empire, Georgia's financial incentives for film production, and Screen Gems' new deal to convert Lakewood Fairgrounds into a soundstage, the A has increasingly raised its profile as a destination for making movies and television shows. Perhaps no project couldmore...
Between Tyler Perry's Atlanta-based media empire, Georgia's financial incentives for film production, and Screen Gems' new deal to convert Lakewood Fairgrounds into a soundstage, the A has increasingly raised its profile as a destination for making movies and television shows. Perhaps no project could do more for the city's cachet than the local filming of "THE WALKING DEAD," American Movie Classics' undead miniseries developed by director Frank Darabont and based on the cult graphic novel series of the same name. AMC is essentially the new HBO, boasting such critically acclaimed fare as "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad." If "The Walking Dead" lives up to those shows when it debuts in November, it could boost our cool factor by several orders of magnitude. Either way, it's always fun having zombies around. &emdash;www.amctv.com/originals/The-Walking-Dead less...

Best sketch comedy troupe or venue BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Dad's Garage Theatre

Runner-up: Sketchworks Theatre


3041 N. Decatur Road, Scottdale, 404-499-8181, www.sketchworkscomedy.com

Best stage director BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Freddie Ashley
Actor's Express artistic director FREDDIE ASHLEY benefits from the law of averages in this category: He's such a prolific director that if you've seen a vivid or imaginative production recently, odds are he helmed it. Ashley's coming off a particularly fulsome season that included the memory-hauntedmore...
Actor's Express artistic director FREDDIE ASHLEY benefits from the law of averages in this category: He's such a prolific director that if you've seen a vivid or imaginative production recently, odds are he helmed it. Ashley's coming off a particularly fulsome season that included the memory-haunted musical Grey Gardens, the intimate musical A Catered Affair, and the showbiz satire-turned-fightfest Slasher. In Ashley's shows, the actors make graceful transitions between powerful emotional beats without ever letting the snappy pace flag. Here's hoping Ashley keeps up the pace as well. www.actors-express.com less...

Best stage director BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Kenny Leon

Best street art BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Krog Street Tunnel

Best theater company BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Aurora Theatre
Perhaps something's in the water in Lawrenceville. Since AURORA THEATRE debuted its new playhouse there in 2007, the once-tame suburban theater has seen increasing creative dividends. In the past season, Aurora debuted the Georgia Gwinnett College Lab Series of innovative scripts at its new black boxmore...
Perhaps something's in the water in Lawrenceville. Since AURORA THEATRE debuted its new playhouse there in 2007, the once-tame suburban theater has seen increasing creative dividends. In the past season, Aurora debuted the Georgia Gwinnett College Lab Series of innovative scripts at its new black box theater, where you can see the likes of the funny, quirky boom and the intriguing, upcoming The Circumference of a Squirrel, starring Daniel May. The programming has branched out from familiar theatrical warhorses and included such coups as the regional premiere of A Catered Affair with Glenn Rainey, and hit a high watermark with Tranced, a twisty political thriller on a par with the best work of Actor's Express, Horizon Theatre and Alliance Hertz Stage. Like Marietta's Theatre in the Square, Aurora strikes just the right balance between pleasing its audience and challenging its artists. 128 E. Pike St., Lawrenceville. 678-226-6222. www.auroratheatre.com. less...

Best theater company BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Dad's Garage Theatre

Runner-up: The New American Shakespeare Tavern


499 Peachtree St., 404-874-5299, www.shakespearetavern.com

Best touring play BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick

Runner-up: Wicked at Fox Theatre


660 Peachtree St. N.E., 404-881-2100, www.foxtheatre.org/

Best trend in the arts BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Art parties
Atlanta's art scene has experienced a changing of the guard over the past couple of years: The collective has become king. And while the twenty- and thirtysomethings behind the city's nascent art co-ops, galleries and organizations have displayed remarkable entrepreneurial savvy, and ushered in a newmore...
Atlanta's art scene has experienced a changing of the guard over the past couple of years: The collective has become king. And while the twenty- and thirtysomethings behind the city's nascent art co-ops, galleries and organizations have displayed remarkable entrepreneurial savvy, and ushered in a new generation of nonprofits, they've also shown that they know how to party. ART PARTIES such as Dashboard Co-op's launch event at the cavernous Blue Tower Gallery, Dodekapus' mad art show-cum-ice-sculpting-rave, BurnAway's fundraising extravaganza, and round two of the underground local art and music fest ARTlantis are a mere sampling of the past year's social calendar. The parties ring with the energy of those who are making up the rules as they go. What's more, the art is good and just keeps getting better. We're not saying an art show has to have fire dancers to be fun ... but it sure as hell doesn't hurt. less...

Best underground art space BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
MINT Gallery
Tucked away in the nether regions of the Sampson Street Lofts, MINT GALLERY makes itself known with an unassuming orange door. The artist-run nonprofit gallery is practically ground zero for projects from Atlanta's emerging creatives. Owners/operators Erica Jamison and Mike Germon maintain a freneticmore...
Tucked away in the nether regions of the Sampson Street Lofts, MINT GALLERY makes itself known with an unassuming orange door. The artist-run nonprofit gallery is practically ground zero for projects from Atlanta's emerging creatives. Owners/operators Erica Jamison and Mike Germon maintain a frenetic pace conceiving of inspired artist collabos (Joe Tsambiras, Sam Parker and the Paper Twins' Here We Hide); killer group shows (Solid Gold); and hosting hot-shit guest curators (Ben Goldman and Jason Travis), while co-founder Andrew Bellury acts as liaison for MINT exhibitions at other venues around town. 684-B John Wesley Dobbs Ave. mintgallery.blogspot.com. less...

Best underground art space BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Eyedrum Art and Music Gallery

Runner-up: WonderRoot


982 Memorial Drive S.E., 404-254-5955, www.wonderroot.org

Best use of Krog Street tunnel BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
FU BP Time-Lapse Video
As BP's busted well continued to gush oil into the Gulf of Mexico nearly two months after the Deep Water Horizon's "blowout preventer" failed to deliver as promised on April 20, a couple of locals took to the Krog Street tunnel to voice their frustration, painting "fu bp" above the DeKalb Avenue entrance.more...
As BP's busted well continued to gush oil into the Gulf of Mexico nearly two months after the Deep Water Horizon's "blowout preventer" failed to deliver as promised on April 20, a couple of locals took to the Krog Street tunnel to voice their frustration, painting "fu bp" above the DeKalb Avenue entrance. The best part, though, was the FU BP TIME-LAPSE VIDEO that circulated the following day. It showed the pair working from the middle of the night into the wee hours of the morning, ducking for cover as cop cars pass, and quickly accumulated upward of 11,000 views on YouTube. less...

Best venue for stand-up comedy BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Laughing Skull Lounge

Runner-up: The Punchline


280 Hilderbrand Drive N.E., 404-252-5233, www.punchline.com

Public art event BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Readers Pick
Atlanta Beltline Inc

www.beltline.org


Runner-up: Atlanta Dogwood Festival


www.dogwood.org

Best gallery spotlighting local artists BOA Award Winner

Year » 2010
Section » Print Features » Special Issue » Best of Atlanta » 2010 » Poets, Artists, & Madmen » Critics Pick
Beep Beep Gallery
Throughout its nearly five-year existence, Poncey-Highland hole-in-the-wall BEEP BEEP GALLERY has been a major factor in transforming Atlanta's underground and emerging art scenes, from shows featuring local talent such as the Plastic Aztecs' Matt Relkin to founding the subterranean arts fest ARTlantismore...
Throughout its nearly five-year existence, Poncey-Highland hole-in-the-wall BEEP BEEP GALLERY has been a major factor in transforming Atlanta's underground and emerging art scenes, from shows featuring local talent such as the Plastic Aztecs' Matt Relkin to founding the subterranean arts fest ARTlantis to partnering with local java joint Aurora Coffee on any number of art/music extravaganzas. less...
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