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Visual Arts

Visual Arts


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  string(3763) "A studio visit with Curtis Ames can feel like you're walking into a construction zone. Scattered throughout his working space at the Goats Farm Arts Center you'll run into everything from an old hockey stick to a PVC pipe. The found objects, arranged in no particular order, are exactly where they should be, and shouldn't.

"A lot of the sculpture work is material that I find," Ames says. "I was just kind of testing out what I can do with them. I got really sick of the process and it didn't feel genuine because you're trying to make something as perfect as it can be and you're really just covering up mistakes, and so I wanted to kind of highlight those attempts and the failures and flaws that really are a part of the process."

Ames' current exhibition, in general, is the first in a series of three shows from participants in MINT Gallery's Leap Year Artist program. Via sculpture, painting, and video, Ames has set out to create what he calls instances of obstruction, challenging viewers to re-imagine their current space and visual references to common objects. Ahead of his show, Ames spoke to CL about his process of collecting objects, finding peace in chaos, and being a champion for the locals arts community.

What's that process like of collecting? Do you dedicate a certain amount of time during the day?

We'll be driving and I'll slam on the brakes and my wife is like "What?" And I'm like, "There's a ball right there, I gotta go get it." And she's like, "Alright, I understand." And doorstops, when I see them, I take them, and they're just kind of these little moments where they kind of bite you there a little bit and you see these things.

Do you ever kind of go crazy when you're surrounded in a space of seemingly disconnected objects?

No, I kind of just rearrange stuff a lot, or put things in the other corner, and then put more stuff up and then the obstructions kind of manifest themselves, and really those things take place usually in a space that I'm exhibiting, but I kind of set them up in here to test out. That's a strategy that I use, some obstruction, either preventing someone from viewing something from the best vantage point or obstructing the ambulatory flow of a space.

It feels as though the works seems fragmented and incomplete ...

Yeah, I always have this idea that the pursuit of perfection has always kind of been at the forefront of what I'm doing and I will try to make things as perfect as I could and then realize that you can't do that. So that's always been there in some form or another. I just needed to figure out how I could best express that, and I thought getting more efficient in the process and in the content, and delivering that content was kind of critical.

As an emerging artist do you find in the last few years the Atlanta arts community has gotten even tighter and more willing to embrace less traditional forms of visual arts?

I think that's an accurate statement. I think that there are other little pockets, as well as museums, that support work that is not traditional. Artist Andrew Boatwright was at my house last night, and we were talking about how we can make things happen on our own without having to rely on the defunct gallery system. But for the most part, my work, and for the majority of collectors out there, it's hard to figure out where would you put this? Do I buy the whole installation or the one piece? And the things that I have sold have been like the simple paintings or works on canvas that can still be hung on the wall and not served as an obstruction. I think that there is a shift, and I'm appreciative of that. A lot of artists leave, and I'm not going anywhere. I'd rather just make the change happen myself or be a part of it."
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  string(3893) "A studio visit with [http://www.curtisames.com/|Curtis Ames] can feel like you're walking into a construction zone. Scattered throughout his working space at the Goats Farm Arts Center you'll run into everything from an old hockey stick to a PVC pipe. The found objects, arranged in no particular order, are exactly where they should be, and shouldn't.

"A lot of the sculpture work is material that I find," Ames says. "I was just kind of testing out what I can do with them. I got really sick of the process and it didn't feel genuine because you're trying to make something as perfect as it can be and you're really just covering up mistakes, and so I wanted to kind of highlight those attempts and the failures and flaws that really are a part of the process."

Ames' current exhibition, ''[https://www.facebook.com/events/1629994593942711/|in general]'', is the first in a series of three shows from participants in [http://mintatl.org/|MINT Gallery]'s Leap Year Artist program. Via sculpture, painting, and video, Ames has set out to create what he calls instances of obstruction, challenging viewers to re-imagine their current space and visual references to common objects. Ahead of his show, Ames spoke to ''CL'' about his process of collecting objects, finding peace in chaos, and being a champion for the locals arts community.

__What's that process like of collecting? Do you dedicate a certain amount of time during the day?__

We'll be driving and I'll slam on the brakes and my wife is like "What?" And I'm like, "There's a ball right there, I gotta go get it." And she's like, "Alright, I understand." And doorstops, when I see them, I take them, and they're just kind of these little moments where they kind of bite you there a little bit and you see these things.

__Do you ever kind of go crazy when you're surrounded in a space of seemingly disconnected objects?__

No, I kind of just rearrange stuff a lot, or put things in the other corner, and then put more stuff up and then the obstructions kind of manifest themselves, and really those things take place usually in a space that I'm exhibiting, but I kind of set them up in here to test out. That's a strategy that I use, some obstruction, either preventing someone from viewing something from the best vantage point or obstructing the ambulatory flow of a space.

__It feels as though the works seems fragmented and incomplete ...__

Yeah, I always have this idea that the pursuit of perfection has always kind of been at the forefront of what I'm doing and I will try to make things as perfect as I could and then realize that you can't do that. So that's always been there in some form or another. I just needed to figure out how I could best express that, and I thought getting more efficient in the process and in the content, and delivering that content was kind of critical.

__As an emerging artist do you find in the last few years the Atlanta arts community has gotten even tighter and more willing to embrace less traditional forms of visual arts?__

I think that's an accurate statement. I think that there are other little pockets, as well as museums, that support work that is not traditional. Artist Andrew Boatwright was at my house last night, and we were talking about how we can make things happen on our own without having to rely on the defunct gallery system. But for the most part, my work, and [[for] the majority of collectors out there, it's hard to figure out where would you put this? Do I buy the whole installation or the one piece? And the things that I have sold have been like the simple paintings or works on canvas that can still be hung on the wall and not served as an obstruction. I think that there is a shift, and I'm appreciative of that. A lot of artists leave, and I'm not going anywhere. I'd rather just make the change happen myself or be a part of it."
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  string(4122) "    Artist's latest show, 'in general,' finds creativity in obstruction   2015-09-24T08:00:00+00:00 Curtis Ames kicks off MINT"s Leap Year final exhibitions ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Gavin Godfrey 9855482 2015-09-24T08:00:00+00:00  A studio visit with Curtis Ames can feel like you're walking into a construction zone. Scattered throughout his working space at the Goats Farm Arts Center you'll run into everything from an old hockey stick to a PVC pipe. The found objects, arranged in no particular order, are exactly where they should be, and shouldn't.

"A lot of the sculpture work is material that I find," Ames says. "I was just kind of testing out what I can do with them. I got really sick of the process and it didn't feel genuine because you're trying to make something as perfect as it can be and you're really just covering up mistakes, and so I wanted to kind of highlight those attempts and the failures and flaws that really are a part of the process."

Ames' current exhibition, in general, is the first in a series of three shows from participants in MINT Gallery's Leap Year Artist program. Via sculpture, painting, and video, Ames has set out to create what he calls instances of obstruction, challenging viewers to re-imagine their current space and visual references to common objects. Ahead of his show, Ames spoke to CL about his process of collecting objects, finding peace in chaos, and being a champion for the locals arts community.

What's that process like of collecting? Do you dedicate a certain amount of time during the day?

We'll be driving and I'll slam on the brakes and my wife is like "What?" And I'm like, "There's a ball right there, I gotta go get it." And she's like, "Alright, I understand." And doorstops, when I see them, I take them, and they're just kind of these little moments where they kind of bite you there a little bit and you see these things.

Do you ever kind of go crazy when you're surrounded in a space of seemingly disconnected objects?

No, I kind of just rearrange stuff a lot, or put things in the other corner, and then put more stuff up and then the obstructions kind of manifest themselves, and really those things take place usually in a space that I'm exhibiting, but I kind of set them up in here to test out. That's a strategy that I use, some obstruction, either preventing someone from viewing something from the best vantage point or obstructing the ambulatory flow of a space.

It feels as though the works seems fragmented and incomplete ...

Yeah, I always have this idea that the pursuit of perfection has always kind of been at the forefront of what I'm doing and I will try to make things as perfect as I could and then realize that you can't do that. So that's always been there in some form or another. I just needed to figure out how I could best express that, and I thought getting more efficient in the process and in the content, and delivering that content was kind of critical.

As an emerging artist do you find in the last few years the Atlanta arts community has gotten even tighter and more willing to embrace less traditional forms of visual arts?

I think that's an accurate statement. I think that there are other little pockets, as well as museums, that support work that is not traditional. Artist Andrew Boatwright was at my house last night, and we were talking about how we can make things happen on our own without having to rely on the defunct gallery system. But for the most part, my work, and for the majority of collectors out there, it's hard to figure out where would you put this? Do I buy the whole installation or the one piece? And the things that I have sold have been like the simple paintings or works on canvas that can still be hung on the wall and not served as an obstruction. I think that there is a shift, and I'm appreciative of that. A lot of artists leave, and I'm not going anywhere. I'd rather just make the change happen myself or be a part of it.             13085038 15474504                          Curtis Ames kicks off MINT"s Leap Year final exhibitions "
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Article

Thursday September 24, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist's latest show, 'in general,' finds creativity in obstruction | more...
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  string(26) "ONE Music"s arts obsession"
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  string(4405) "When you think about ONE Musicfest, art probably isn't necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. But the truth is, the festival just wouldn't be the same without it. Since the very first event in 2010, the Art Village has been a major part of the experience.

??
"It would've been very difficult to produce a festival without having the visual artists aspect included," festival founder Jason Carter says.

??
While Carter points out that visual art, specifically graffiti, is one of the pillars of hip-hop culture and ONE Musicfest has always been about showcasing the culture. He recognizes that Atlanta has some of the best urban artists in the country, and he wanted to bring the two together to be properly celebrated.

??
"The visual artists stimulate the actual performing artists," he explains, adding that's one of the main reasons why he's always sure that artists are creating work live and on the spot.

??
Carter says that the diversity of the festival's musical lineup has to be brought to life by the visual artists as well. Last year, acclaimed artist Fabian Williams brought an early version of his popular Dungeon Family Pyramid to the festival, giving attendees a preview of the work before it officially landed at the Atlanta Beltline (it's since been moved).

??
This year, the festival boasts its biggest visual artist line-up thus far with 20 artists participating.

??
"We started noticing so many other artists that we wanted to showcase," Carter says, also mentioning that all 20 artists are Atlanta-based. "We had to examine how much space we had on the grounds to see if we could expand. We had room, so we did."

??
For the first time, this year photographers will also be included among the visual artists.

??
"We try to find artists that have their own unique style but are still huge contributors to the visual arts movement," Carter says. "We like artists that bring something different."

??
EricNine Lopez, visual artist and co-founder of branding/event planning company Allways Open Creative, says that's one of the main reasons why he's been eager to be part of the festival.

??
"I'm from New York and I've lived all up and down the east coast, but when I finally made it to Atlanta, it changed my perspective on life," Lopez says. "When I'm at ONE Music, I see obvious growth. It represents Atlanta. To me, it's an Atlanta destination."

??
This marks Lopez's fifth year of showcasing at ONE Musicfest and this go-around he's doing a villain theme, a continuation of the recent art show he curated, "Heroes and Villains." He says he's even bringing out a few never-before-seen pieces for the festival, mostly because he not only gets an opportunity to showcase his work to fresh faces, but people come to buy.

??
"I've always sold more than half of my work and last year, I sold almost everything," he says.

??
So yes, art in all forms is celebrated and appreciated but at the end of the day, the festival aims to boost the financial aspect of the culture, as well, because it's vital for sustainment. Leading up to the 2014 festival, ONE Musicfest organized an arts panel that brought out some of the city's prominent artists, curators, educators, and officials to talk about how to grow the arts scene in Atlanta, both creatively and financially. This year, there was another cultural panel leading up to the event, curated by Bem Joiner of Center for Civic Innovation.

??
"Too often, urban art is an element that's overlooked or left out," Carter says. "We wanted to find a way to bring it together to all be celebrated."

??
To that end, Lopez says that as the festival has gotten bigger and better, so has the response to his work.

??
"The live piece I did was sold before I finished," he says. "People are out there to support and have a good time, so I treat exhibiting at the festival just like I would an opening at any of my shows."

??
But mostly, Lopez says he just digs the idea of contributing to Atlanta's art scene.

??
"The festival is a great representation of the city's talent. People come from all over the country for this and I feel that the festival is really giving something back to the city in that sense," he says. "The thing that's most important to me is the feeling of pride I get from being part of something that impacts the city so much and is consistently on point.""
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  string(4609) "When you think about [http://www.onemusicfest.com|ONE Musicfest], art probably isn't necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. But the truth is, the festival just wouldn't be the same without it. Since the very first event in 2010, the Art Village has been a major part of the experience.

??
"It would've been very difficult to produce a festival without having the visual artists aspect included," festival founder Jason Carter says.

??
While Carter points out that visual art, specifically graffiti, is one of the pillars of hip-hop culture and ONE Musicfest has always been about showcasing the culture. He recognizes that Atlanta has some of the best urban artists in the country, and he wanted to bring the two together to be properly celebrated.

??
"The visual artists stimulate the actual performing artists," he explains, adding that's one of the main reasons why he's always sure that artists are creating work live and on the spot.

??
Carter says that the diversity of the festival's musical lineup has to be brought to life by the visual artists as well. Last year, acclaimed artist Fabian Williams brought an early version of his popular [http://clatl.com/atlanta/fabian-williams-dungeon-family-pyramid-finds-a-new-home/Content?oid=14575229|Dungeon Family Pyramid] to the festival, giving attendees a preview of the work before it officially landed at the Atlanta Beltline (it's since been moved).

??
This year, the festival boasts its biggest visual artist line-up thus far with 20 artists participating.

??
"We started noticing so many other artists that we wanted to showcase," Carter says, also mentioning that all 20 artists are Atlanta-based. "We had to examine how much space we had on the grounds to see if we could expand. We had room, so we did."

??
For the first time, this year photographers will also be included among the visual artists.

??
"We try to find artists that have their own unique style but are still huge contributors to the visual arts movement," Carter says. "We like artists that bring something different."

??
[http://ericnine.com/|EricNine Lopez], visual artist and co-founder of branding/event planning company [https://www.facebook.com/AllwaysOpenCreative|Allways Open Creative], says that's one of the main reasons why he's been eager to be part of the festival.

??
"I'm from New York and I've lived all up and down the east coast, but when I finally made it to Atlanta, it changed my perspective on life," Lopez says. "When I'm at ONE Music, I see obvious growth. It represents Atlanta. To me, it's an Atlanta destination."

??
This marks Lopez's fifth year of showcasing at ONE Musicfest and this go-around he's doing a villain theme, a continuation of the recent art show he curated, "Heroes and Villains." He says he's even bringing out a few never-before-seen pieces for the festival, mostly because he not only gets an opportunity to showcase his work to fresh faces, but people come to buy.

??
"I've always sold more than half of my work and last year, I sold almost everything," he says.

??
So yes, art in all forms is celebrated and appreciated but at the end of the day, the festival aims to boost the financial aspect of the culture, as well, because it's vital for sustainment. Leading up to the 2014 festival, ONE Musicfest organized an arts panel that brought out some of the city's prominent artists, curators, educators, and officials to talk about how to grow the arts scene in Atlanta, both creatively and financially. This year, there was another cultural panel leading up to the event, curated by Bem Joiner of Center for Civic Innovation.

??
"Too often, urban art is an element that's overlooked or left out," Carter says. "We wanted to find a way to bring it together to all be celebrated."

??
To that end, Lopez says that as the festival has gotten bigger and better, so has the response to his work.

??
"The live piece I did was sold before I finished," he says. "People are out there to support and have a good time, so I treat exhibiting at the festival just like I would an opening at any of my shows."

??
But mostly, Lopez says he just digs the idea of contributing to Atlanta's art scene.

??
"The festival is a great representation of the city's talent. People come from all over the country for this and I feel that the festival is really giving something back to the city in that sense," he says. "The thing that's most important to me is the feeling of pride I get from being part of something that impacts the city so much and is consistently on point.""
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  string(4660) "    Festival looks to embrace Atlanta's creative community   2015-09-10T08:00:00+00:00 ONE Music"s arts obsession   Jacinta Howard 1306412 2015-09-10T08:00:00+00:00  When you think about ONE Musicfest, art probably isn't necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. But the truth is, the festival just wouldn't be the same without it. Since the very first event in 2010, the Art Village has been a major part of the experience.

??
"It would've been very difficult to produce a festival without having the visual artists aspect included," festival founder Jason Carter says.

??
While Carter points out that visual art, specifically graffiti, is one of the pillars of hip-hop culture and ONE Musicfest has always been about showcasing the culture. He recognizes that Atlanta has some of the best urban artists in the country, and he wanted to bring the two together to be properly celebrated.

??
"The visual artists stimulate the actual performing artists," he explains, adding that's one of the main reasons why he's always sure that artists are creating work live and on the spot.

??
Carter says that the diversity of the festival's musical lineup has to be brought to life by the visual artists as well. Last year, acclaimed artist Fabian Williams brought an early version of his popular Dungeon Family Pyramid to the festival, giving attendees a preview of the work before it officially landed at the Atlanta Beltline (it's since been moved).

??
This year, the festival boasts its biggest visual artist line-up thus far with 20 artists participating.

??
"We started noticing so many other artists that we wanted to showcase," Carter says, also mentioning that all 20 artists are Atlanta-based. "We had to examine how much space we had on the grounds to see if we could expand. We had room, so we did."

??
For the first time, this year photographers will also be included among the visual artists.

??
"We try to find artists that have their own unique style but are still huge contributors to the visual arts movement," Carter says. "We like artists that bring something different."

??
EricNine Lopez, visual artist and co-founder of branding/event planning company Allways Open Creative, says that's one of the main reasons why he's been eager to be part of the festival.

??
"I'm from New York and I've lived all up and down the east coast, but when I finally made it to Atlanta, it changed my perspective on life," Lopez says. "When I'm at ONE Music, I see obvious growth. It represents Atlanta. To me, it's an Atlanta destination."

??
This marks Lopez's fifth year of showcasing at ONE Musicfest and this go-around he's doing a villain theme, a continuation of the recent art show he curated, "Heroes and Villains." He says he's even bringing out a few never-before-seen pieces for the festival, mostly because he not only gets an opportunity to showcase his work to fresh faces, but people come to buy.

??
"I've always sold more than half of my work and last year, I sold almost everything," he says.

??
So yes, art in all forms is celebrated and appreciated but at the end of the day, the festival aims to boost the financial aspect of the culture, as well, because it's vital for sustainment. Leading up to the 2014 festival, ONE Musicfest organized an arts panel that brought out some of the city's prominent artists, curators, educators, and officials to talk about how to grow the arts scene in Atlanta, both creatively and financially. This year, there was another cultural panel leading up to the event, curated by Bem Joiner of Center for Civic Innovation.

??
"Too often, urban art is an element that's overlooked or left out," Carter says. "We wanted to find a way to bring it together to all be celebrated."

??
To that end, Lopez says that as the festival has gotten bigger and better, so has the response to his work.

??
"The live piece I did was sold before I finished," he says. "People are out there to support and have a good time, so I treat exhibiting at the festival just like I would an opening at any of my shows."

??
But mostly, Lopez says he just digs the idea of contributing to Atlanta's art scene.

??
"The festival is a great representation of the city's talent. People come from all over the country for this and I feel that the festival is really giving something back to the city in that sense," he says. "The thing that's most important to me is the feeling of pride I get from being part of something that impacts the city so much and is consistently on point."       0,0,10      13084712 15287666                          ONE Music"s arts obsession "
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Thursday September 10, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Festival looks to embrace Atlanta's creative community | more...
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  string(2871) "Interior designer Robert Sepúlveda Jr. moved from New York City to Atlanta only two years ago, but he's already trying to leave his footprint in the city. After seeing other cities' rainbow crosswalks — including Chicago, San Francisco, and West Hollywood — Sepúlveda didn't understand why Atlanta didn't have them. After all, Atlanta has a significant LGBT population.

"Atlanta being so diverse and Midtown being the epicenter for the LGBT community, I kept thinking this doesn't make sense," Sepúlveda says. "Why hasn't anybody tried to do this yet? That was really my inspiration. Knowing that the community would appreciate it and knowing that the LGBT population of Atlanta is so big, I thought it would be appropriate. "

In August 2014, Sepúlveda submitted a proposal about adding four rainbow crosswalks to the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue to the City of Atlanta in hopes of having up and running by the upcoming Pride weekend. However, the usual red tape and permits squandered those plans. Despite delays with paperwork, the Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks seemed to be well received in the nearby community and by the city itself.

"The community as a whole and the City of Atlanta has been completely responsive," Sepúlveda says.

While most of the feedback the project has received has been supportive and positive, certain online commentators don't feel as supportive of the public art project.

"Lately with all of the press, I've gone back and read some of the links and what people have said," Sepúlveda says. "Some of the things that I am seeing are more narrow-minded comments. But, the rainbow flag was always meant to be inclusive, not exclusive. It's never been a symbol of superiority."

The rainbow crosswalks will be painted with colorful resin stripes in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple — the same colors as the rainbow flag. "The rainbow flag itself is a symbol of diversity," Sepúlveda says.

The city will not be funding this project; it will be completely funded with donations from local citizens and corporations. Sepúlveda also hopes this project helps grow other initiatives and awareness within the community as well.

"We're not just painting the crosswalks, we're going to try to build a foundation around them that will help with community outreach," he says. "Your money is going directly to a public arts project and the mission of it is to advance the awareness of diversity and equality through public art and community outreach. It's not just graffiti on the ground."

While the Urban Design Commission meeting was supposed to take place last week, it was postponed until this Wed., Aug. 12, at 4 p.m., due to lack of quorum. If the design is approved, Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks hopes to raise the donations necessary to paint the sidewalks before Pride weekend 2015."
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  string(3049) "Interior designer Robert Sepúlveda Jr. moved from New York City to Atlanta only two years ago, but he's already trying to leave his footprint in the city. After seeing other cities' rainbow crosswalks — including Chicago, San Francisco, and West Hollywood — Sepúlveda didn't understand why Atlanta didn't have them. After all, Atlanta has a significant LGBT population.

"Atlanta being so diverse and Midtown being the epicenter for the LGBT community, I kept thinking this doesn't make sense," Sepúlveda says. "Why hasn't anybody tried to do this yet? That was really my inspiration. Knowing that the community would appreciate it and knowing that the LGBT population of Atlanta is so big, I thought it would be appropriate. "

In August 2014, Sepúlveda submitted a proposal about adding four rainbow crosswalks to the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue to the City of Atlanta in hopes of having up and running by the upcoming Pride weekend. However, the usual red tape and permits squandered those plans. Despite delays with paperwork, the [https://twitter.com/ATLrc|Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks] seemed to be well received in the nearby community and by the city itself.

"The community as a whole and the City of Atlanta has been completely responsive," Sepúlveda says.

While most of the feedback the project has received has been supportive and positive, certain online commentators don't feel as supportive of the public art project.

"Lately with all of the press, I've gone back and read some of the links and what people have said," Sepúlveda says. "Some of the things that I am seeing are more narrow-minded comments. But, [[the rainbow flag] was always meant to be inclusive, not exclusive. It's never been a symbol of superiority."

The [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2015/07/28/were-finally-getting-some-rainbows-in-midtown|rainbow crosswalks] will be painted with colorful resin stripes in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple — the same colors as the rainbow flag. "The rainbow flag itself is a symbol of diversity," Sepúlveda says.

The city will not be funding this project; it will be completely funded with donations from local citizens and corporations. Sepúlveda also hopes this project helps grow other initiatives and awareness within the community as well.

"We're not just painting the crosswalks, we're going to try to build a foundation around them that will help with community outreach," he says. "Your money is going directly to a public arts project and the mission of it is to advance the awareness of diversity and equality through public art and community outreach. It's not just graffiti on the ground."

While the Urban Design Commission meeting was supposed to take place last week, it was postponed until this Wed., Aug. 12, at 4 p.m., due to lack of quorum. If the design is approved, [https://www.facebook.com/Atlantarainbowcrosswalks|Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks] hopes to raise the donations necessary to paint the sidewalks before Pride weekend 2015."
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  string(3236) "    Non-profit hopes their public art project will encourage inclusivity   2015-08-11T08:00:00+00:00 Robert Sepuveda Jr."s rainbow crosswalks closer to reality? ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-08-11T08:00:00+00:00  Interior designer Robert Sepúlveda Jr. moved from New York City to Atlanta only two years ago, but he's already trying to leave his footprint in the city. After seeing other cities' rainbow crosswalks — including Chicago, San Francisco, and West Hollywood — Sepúlveda didn't understand why Atlanta didn't have them. After all, Atlanta has a significant LGBT population.

"Atlanta being so diverse and Midtown being the epicenter for the LGBT community, I kept thinking this doesn't make sense," Sepúlveda says. "Why hasn't anybody tried to do this yet? That was really my inspiration. Knowing that the community would appreciate it and knowing that the LGBT population of Atlanta is so big, I thought it would be appropriate. "

In August 2014, Sepúlveda submitted a proposal about adding four rainbow crosswalks to the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue to the City of Atlanta in hopes of having up and running by the upcoming Pride weekend. However, the usual red tape and permits squandered those plans. Despite delays with paperwork, the Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks seemed to be well received in the nearby community and by the city itself.

"The community as a whole and the City of Atlanta has been completely responsive," Sepúlveda says.

While most of the feedback the project has received has been supportive and positive, certain online commentators don't feel as supportive of the public art project.

"Lately with all of the press, I've gone back and read some of the links and what people have said," Sepúlveda says. "Some of the things that I am seeing are more narrow-minded comments. But, the rainbow flag was always meant to be inclusive, not exclusive. It's never been a symbol of superiority."

The rainbow crosswalks will be painted with colorful resin stripes in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple — the same colors as the rainbow flag. "The rainbow flag itself is a symbol of diversity," Sepúlveda says.

The city will not be funding this project; it will be completely funded with donations from local citizens and corporations. Sepúlveda also hopes this project helps grow other initiatives and awareness within the community as well.

"We're not just painting the crosswalks, we're going to try to build a foundation around them that will help with community outreach," he says. "Your money is going directly to a public arts project and the mission of it is to advance the awareness of diversity and equality through public art and community outreach. It's not just graffiti on the ground."

While the Urban Design Commission meeting was supposed to take place last week, it was postponed until this Wed., Aug. 12, at 4 p.m., due to lack of quorum. If the design is approved, Atlanta Rainbow Crosswalks hopes to raise the donations necessary to paint the sidewalks before Pride weekend 2015.             13084336 15090033                          Robert Sepuveda Jr."s rainbow crosswalks closer to reality? "
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Tuesday August 11, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Non-profit hopes their public art project will encourage inclusivity | more...

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  string(3565) "WonderRoot, in partnership with MARTA and the TransFormation Alliance, recently announced the launch of the En Route program with a goal to revitalized select MARTA stations and their surroundings with public art. The stations selected include King Memorial, Oakland City, Hamilton E. Holmes, and a yet-to-be-announced station.

??
The newly formed TransFormation Alliance is looking to provide a platform through this public art project for community residents to engage in their neighborhoods, create access to transit, and bring economic prosperity to the area.

??
En Route's goal is to make these stations more approachable to people outside the community, but also encourage bonding among riders living nearby. "One of the reasons I'm excited about this project is that artists and public art can have — it doesn't always — but it can have a transformational impact in the communities that it lives," WonderRoot Executive Director Chris Appleton says.

??
After receiving a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, WonderRoot began its search for an artist who could address the issues of mobility and access around the selected MARTA stations. WonderRoot chose local artist Fahamu Pecou, whose work focuses on black masculinity and identity. Pecou is currently a Ph.D. student at Emory University and his works have appeared in collections at the High Museum of Art, Smithsonian National Museum, and abroad.

??
"We went over a handful of artists in Atlanta at WonderRoot whose work we thought could speak to some of the key issues that we were interested in addressing through this work," Appleton says. "We really felt that Fahamu was the best fit for the project. The subject matter that Fahamu has addressed in his work historically is a great intersection with WonderRoot, art, and social change."

??
After MARTA selected each station for the project, WonderRoot and the TransFormation Alliance, along with Pecou, will plan several meetings with community members to discuss the project and how it can strengthen the adjoining neighborhoods.

??
"One of the things that's key to this project and something that I'm excited about is the fact that there's a very core community engagement associated with the project," Pecou says. "Before doing anything, I'll be working with WonderRoot to meet with community members to talk about their ideas, their vision, and their concerns with respect to the art that goes into these stations within their community."

??
All the time spent with the nearby neighborhoods and speaking with residents will help bring a real community feel to the project.

??
"The positive consequence about having done that work is that we will gather all of this information and data through this art process and then turn that over to the TransFormation Alliance and MARTA, which will help inform and strengthened their work," Appleton says. "This will ensure that there is a diversity of voices and perspectives in the planning work that they are doing."

??
Ultimately, the hope is that public art can help make MARTA a more attractive mode of transportation to residents nearby and far away and provide more access to these often ostracized neighborhoods.

??
"MARTA has become kind of a gateway that connects the city and I want to find a way of tying in this idea of connectivity, identity, and community building," Pecou says of the project.

??
The first MARTA station to see this program implemented will be King Memorial station on Decatur Street. The community meeting will take place later this month."
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??
After receiving a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, WonderRoot began its search for an artist who could address the issues of mobility and access around the selected MARTA stations. WonderRoot chose local artist [http://www.fahamupecouart.com/|Fahamu Pecou], whose work focuses on black masculinity and identity. Pecou is currently a Ph.D. student at Emory University and his works have appeared in collections at the High Museum of Art, Smithsonian National Museum, and abroad.

??
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??
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??
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??
All the time spent with the nearby neighborhoods and speaking with residents will help bring a real community feel to the project.

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??
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??
"MARTA has become kind of a gateway that connects the city and I want to find a way of tying in this idea of connectivity, identity, and community building," Pecou says of the project.

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The first MARTA station to see this program implemented will be King Memorial station on Decatur Street. The community meeting will take place later this month."
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  string(3932) "    Artist will create murals at four stations around the city, but not before engaging the nearby communities   2015-08-04T08:00:00+00:00 MARTA recruits WonderRoot, Fahamu Pecou for En Route program   Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-08-04T08:00:00+00:00  WonderRoot, in partnership with MARTA and the TransFormation Alliance, recently announced the launch of the En Route program with a goal to revitalized select MARTA stations and their surroundings with public art. The stations selected include King Memorial, Oakland City, Hamilton E. Holmes, and a yet-to-be-announced station.

??
The newly formed TransFormation Alliance is looking to provide a platform through this public art project for community residents to engage in their neighborhoods, create access to transit, and bring economic prosperity to the area.

??
En Route's goal is to make these stations more approachable to people outside the community, but also encourage bonding among riders living nearby. "One of the reasons I'm excited about this project is that artists and public art can have — it doesn't always — but it can have a transformational impact in the communities that it lives," WonderRoot Executive Director Chris Appleton says.

??
After receiving a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, WonderRoot began its search for an artist who could address the issues of mobility and access around the selected MARTA stations. WonderRoot chose local artist Fahamu Pecou, whose work focuses on black masculinity and identity. Pecou is currently a Ph.D. student at Emory University and his works have appeared in collections at the High Museum of Art, Smithsonian National Museum, and abroad.

??
"We went over a handful of artists in Atlanta at WonderRoot whose work we thought could speak to some of the key issues that we were interested in addressing through this work," Appleton says. "We really felt that Fahamu was the best fit for the project. The subject matter that Fahamu has addressed in his work historically is a great intersection with WonderRoot, art, and social change."

??
After MARTA selected each station for the project, WonderRoot and the TransFormation Alliance, along with Pecou, will plan several meetings with community members to discuss the project and how it can strengthen the adjoining neighborhoods.

??
"One of the things that's key to this project and something that I'm excited about is the fact that there's a very core community engagement associated with the project," Pecou says. "Before doing anything, I'll be working with WonderRoot to meet with community members to talk about their ideas, their vision, and their concerns with respect to the art that goes into these stations within their community."

??
All the time spent with the nearby neighborhoods and speaking with residents will help bring a real community feel to the project.

??
"The positive consequence about having done that work is that we will gather all of this information and data through this art process and then turn that over to the TransFormation Alliance and MARTA, which will help inform and strengthened their work," Appleton says. "This will ensure that there is a diversity of voices and perspectives in the planning work that they are doing."

??
Ultimately, the hope is that public art can help make MARTA a more attractive mode of transportation to residents nearby and far away and provide more access to these often ostracized neighborhoods.

??
"MARTA has become kind of a gateway that connects the city and I want to find a way of tying in this idea of connectivity, identity, and community building," Pecou says of the project.

??
The first MARTA station to see this program implemented will be King Memorial station on Decatur Street. The community meeting will take place later this month.             13084190 15025780                          MARTA recruits WonderRoot, Fahamu Pecou for En Route program "
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Article

Tuesday August 4, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist will create murals at four stations around the city, but not before engaging the nearby communities | more...
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  ["title"]=>
  string(77) "Call to add OutKast to Stone Mountain sparks discussion on symbolism and race"
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  string(137) "Big Boi, petition organizer Mack Williams, and local fans share their thoughts on who, if anyone, should replace the Confederate memorial"
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  string(137) "Big Boi, petition organizer Mack Williams, and local fans share their thoughts on who, if anyone, should replace the Confederate memorial"
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  string(5592) "Recently the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP called for a sandblast removal of Confederate generals Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Stonewall Jackson on Stone Mountain. Artist Mack Williams had another idea: Don't remove the original carving, just add OutKast.

After creating a design featuring the two dope boys in a Cadillac, Williams, a member of the once popular local comic-music outfit Attractive Eighties Women, set up a petition on MoveOn.org. The petition asked for 15,000 signatures before presenting the idea to the Georgia State House, Senate, and Gov. Nathan Deal. So far more than 12,000 people have signed it.

Williams, a Blackshear, Ga., native now residing in Brooklyn, originally came up with the idea as a joke.

He left a comment on the Facebook page of his professional friend Adult Swim animator C. Martin Croker — whose first major gig was working the laser show at Stone Mountain Park — suggesting that OutKast appear on the mountain. It took Williams only an hour to draft the design that appeared online and ultimately went viral.

"I don't think there was any way that I could foresee it taking off the way it did," he says. "Before I did the petition, I didn't give it much thought at all. I just thought my friends would think it was funny."

The prospect of the rappers appearing on the historic landmark reached one half of the duo right away.

While attending his grandmother's 90th birthday party in Blackshear, Williams took a quick pause in the festivities. "Big Boi called me on my phone. We have a mutual acquaintance whom I'm working on a project with," Williams says. While they only talked for "seconds," Williams said Big Boi expressed his appreciation for the idea.

There's been no word from André 3000, but Big Boi retweeted a post about the artwork.

On a more serious note, Atlanta City Councilman Michael Julian Bond has called for Deal to consider giving the entire memorial a makeover.

Although he didn't elaborate on his thoughts about the idea, Big Boi gave CL his own suggestion for who should go up on the mountain. "They've got to put MLK on there first before they put anybody on there. They can't have the 'Kast riding in no Cadillac. We ain't sponsored by Cadillac laughs."

Other OutKast supporters have expressed similar views.

Atlanta resident and music researcher for Mediabase Kila Denton, a longtime fan of the duo, had other ideas for the carving. "Maybe adding civil rights icons Martin Luther King, Joseph E. Lowery, and Andrew Young," she says.

Denton also spoke of the presence of Native Americans, particularly the Cherokee who were early inhabitants of the state of Georgia. "Culturally, wouldn't it make sense to have indigenous people?" she asks.

Presently, there are no federally recognized Native American Indian tribes in Georgia.

The display of Civil War and Confederate memorabilia has always been a touchy topic. Last month's tragic shooting of nine members of a bible study group in South Carolina by white supremacist Dylann Roof ultimately led to the removal of the Confederate flag at the state's capitol and has prompted dialogue on whether the symbols should be displayed on public property.

Williams is now experiencing the debate firsthand. A lot of people privately let Williams know the South's got something to say — good or bad.

"I've gotten a lot of emails — most people don't get the joke and think I'm a moron or I'm destroying history," he says.

Despite some detractors and trolls on social media and various sites covering the topic, Williams says, "On Facebook and Twitter, the mentions directed specifically at me have been 99 percent positive."

On the petition and in discussion he makes it clear he's not interested in revisionist history.

"By no means do we wish to erase or destroy the current carving, which, regardless of its context, is an impressive and historic work of art," the petition's statement reads. "We simply wish to add new carvings, of Atlanta hip-hop duo OutKast to the mountainside. There's plenty of room."

He adds, "I don't think anything should be removed; I don't think that's how we should move forward as a culture."

The artist never intended to become a spokesperson on race relations. "There were people who feel like they're under attack right now. I'm no expert; they need to open up a book and realize they're maybe on the wrong side of history," he says.

Williams, who is white, has also been fortunate enough to avoid the potential dangers of racial controversy. He doesn't discuss the issue in public and has not received hateful dissent online.

"No one has sent me death threats or threats of violence," he says. "... I was afraid I would get caught in a debate I couldn't get out of."

Still, he is unafraid to speak out on views that may not resonate among some members of his hometown. "The heat is on racism right now, which is good," Williams says. "Until the guy in Blackshear, Ga., feels embarrassed or afraid to fly the Confederate flag on his pickup truck, we have a long way to go."

Williams knew that adding Atlanta's famed rap duo to the mountain would be unlikely. He didn't create an execution plan or even consider next steps, but he appears pleased with what is already happening.

"I'll be more engaged and more involved, be more of a participant of what's next for the South and the United States," he says. "If André and Big Boi were interested in doing something with the artwork, I would love to be involved."

With additional reporting by Gavin Godfrey."
  ["tracker_field_contentWikiPage_raw"]=>
  string(5880) "Recently the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP called for a sandblast removal of Confederate generals Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Stonewall Jackson on Stone Mountain. Artist Mack Williams had another idea: Don't remove the original carving, just add OutKast.

After creating a design featuring the two dope boys in a Cadillac, Williams, a member of the once popular local comic-music outfit Attractive Eighties Women, set up a [http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/georgia-add-outkast-to|petition] on [http://MoveOn.org|MoveOn.org]. The petition asked for 15,000 signatures before presenting the idea to the Georgia State House, Senate, and Gov. Nathan Deal. So far more than 12,000 people have signed it.

Williams, a Blackshear, Ga., native now residing in Brooklyn, originally came up with the idea as a joke.

He left a comment on the Facebook page of his professional friend Adult Swim animator [http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0188554/|C. Martin Croker] — whose first major gig was working the laser show at Stone Mountain Park — suggesting that OutKast appear on the mountain. It took Williams only an hour to draft the design that appeared online and ultimately went viral.

"I don't think there was any way that I could foresee it taking off the way it did," he says. "Before I did the petition, I didn't give it much thought at all. I just thought my friends would think it was funny."

The prospect of the rappers appearing on the historic landmark reached one half of the duo right away.

While attending his grandmother's 90th birthday party in Blackshear, Williams took a quick pause in the festivities. "Big Boi called me on my phone. We have a mutual acquaintance whom I'm working on a project with," Williams says. While they only talked for "seconds," Williams said Big Boi expressed his appreciation for the idea.

There's been no word from André 3000, but Big Boi [https://twitter.com/BigBoi/status/622253847025729536|retweeted] a post about the artwork.

On a more serious note, Atlanta City Councilman Michael Julian Bond has called for Deal to consider giving the entire memorial a makeover.

Although he didn't elaborate on his thoughts about the idea, Big Boi gave ''CL'' his own suggestion for who should go up on the mountain. "They've got to put MLK on there first before they put anybody on there. They can't have the 'Kast riding in no Cadillac. We ain't sponsored by Cadillac [[laughs]."

Other OutKast supporters have expressed similar views.

Atlanta resident and music researcher for Mediabase Kila Denton, a longtime fan of the duo, had other ideas for the carving. "Maybe adding civil rights icons Martin Luther King, Joseph E. Lowery, and Andrew Young," she says.

Denton also spoke of the presence of Native Americans, particularly the Cherokee who were [http://www.ncsl.org/research/state-tribal-institute/list-of-federal-and-state-recognized-tribes.aspx|early inhabitants] of the state of Georgia. "Culturally, wouldn't it make sense to have indigenous people?" she asks.

Presently, there are no federally recognized Native American Indian tribes in Georgia.

The display of Civil War and Confederate memorabilia has always been a touchy topic. Last month's tragic shooting of nine members of a bible study group in South Carolina by white supremacist Dylann Roof ultimately led to the removal of the Confederate flag at the state's capitol and has prompted dialogue on whether the symbols should be displayed on public property.

Williams is now experiencing the debate firsthand. A lot of people privately let Williams know the South's got something to say — good or bad.

"I've gotten a lot of emails — most people don't get the joke and think I'm a moron or I'm destroying history," he says.

Despite some detractors and trolls on social media and various sites covering the topic, Williams says, "On Facebook and Twitter, the mentions directed specifically at me have been 99 percent positive."

On the petition and in discussion he makes it clear he's not interested in revisionist history.

"By no means do we wish to erase or destroy the current carving, which, regardless of its context, is an impressive and historic work of art," the petition's statement reads. "We simply wish to add new carvings, of Atlanta hip-hop duo OutKast to the mountainside. There's plenty of room."

He adds, "I don't think anything should be removed; I don't think that's how we should move forward as a culture."

The artist never intended to become a spokesperson on race relations. "There were people who feel like they're under attack right now. I'm no expert; they need to open up a book and realize they're maybe on the wrong side of history," he says.

Williams, who is white, has also been fortunate enough to avoid the potential dangers of racial controversy. He doesn't discuss the issue in public and has not received hateful dissent online.

"No one has sent me death threats or threats of violence," he says. "... I was afraid I would get caught in a debate I couldn't get out of."

Still, he is unafraid to speak out on views that may not resonate among some members of his hometown. "The heat is on racism right now, which is good," Williams says. "Until the guy in Blackshear, Ga., feels embarrassed or afraid to fly the Confederate flag on his pickup truck, we have a long way to go."

Williams knew that adding Atlanta's famed rap duo to the mountain would be unlikely. He didn't create an execution plan or even consider next steps, but he appears pleased with what is already happening.

"I'll be more engaged and more involved, be more of a participant of what's next for the South and the United States," he says. "If André and Big Boi were interested in doing something with [[the artwork], I would love to be involved."

''With additional reporting by Gavin Godfrey.''"
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  string(6065) "    Big Boi, petition organizer Mack Williams, and local fans share their thoughts on who, if anyone, should replace the Confederate memorial   2015-07-27T08:00:00+00:00 Call to add OutKast to Stone Mountain sparks discussion on symbolism and race ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Shannon Barbour 1699889 2015-07-27T08:00:00+00:00  Recently the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP called for a sandblast removal of Confederate generals Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Stonewall Jackson on Stone Mountain. Artist Mack Williams had another idea: Don't remove the original carving, just add OutKast.

After creating a design featuring the two dope boys in a Cadillac, Williams, a member of the once popular local comic-music outfit Attractive Eighties Women, set up a petition on MoveOn.org. The petition asked for 15,000 signatures before presenting the idea to the Georgia State House, Senate, and Gov. Nathan Deal. So far more than 12,000 people have signed it.

Williams, a Blackshear, Ga., native now residing in Brooklyn, originally came up with the idea as a joke.

He left a comment on the Facebook page of his professional friend Adult Swim animator C. Martin Croker — whose first major gig was working the laser show at Stone Mountain Park — suggesting that OutKast appear on the mountain. It took Williams only an hour to draft the design that appeared online and ultimately went viral.

"I don't think there was any way that I could foresee it taking off the way it did," he says. "Before I did the petition, I didn't give it much thought at all. I just thought my friends would think it was funny."

The prospect of the rappers appearing on the historic landmark reached one half of the duo right away.

While attending his grandmother's 90th birthday party in Blackshear, Williams took a quick pause in the festivities. "Big Boi called me on my phone. We have a mutual acquaintance whom I'm working on a project with," Williams says. While they only talked for "seconds," Williams said Big Boi expressed his appreciation for the idea.

There's been no word from André 3000, but Big Boi retweeted a post about the artwork.

On a more serious note, Atlanta City Councilman Michael Julian Bond has called for Deal to consider giving the entire memorial a makeover.

Although he didn't elaborate on his thoughts about the idea, Big Boi gave CL his own suggestion for who should go up on the mountain. "They've got to put MLK on there first before they put anybody on there. They can't have the 'Kast riding in no Cadillac. We ain't sponsored by Cadillac laughs."

Other OutKast supporters have expressed similar views.

Atlanta resident and music researcher for Mediabase Kila Denton, a longtime fan of the duo, had other ideas for the carving. "Maybe adding civil rights icons Martin Luther King, Joseph E. Lowery, and Andrew Young," she says.

Denton also spoke of the presence of Native Americans, particularly the Cherokee who were early inhabitants of the state of Georgia. "Culturally, wouldn't it make sense to have indigenous people?" she asks.

Presently, there are no federally recognized Native American Indian tribes in Georgia.

The display of Civil War and Confederate memorabilia has always been a touchy topic. Last month's tragic shooting of nine members of a bible study group in South Carolina by white supremacist Dylann Roof ultimately led to the removal of the Confederate flag at the state's capitol and has prompted dialogue on whether the symbols should be displayed on public property.

Williams is now experiencing the debate firsthand. A lot of people privately let Williams know the South's got something to say — good or bad.

"I've gotten a lot of emails — most people don't get the joke and think I'm a moron or I'm destroying history," he says.

Despite some detractors and trolls on social media and various sites covering the topic, Williams says, "On Facebook and Twitter, the mentions directed specifically at me have been 99 percent positive."

On the petition and in discussion he makes it clear he's not interested in revisionist history.

"By no means do we wish to erase or destroy the current carving, which, regardless of its context, is an impressive and historic work of art," the petition's statement reads. "We simply wish to add new carvings, of Atlanta hip-hop duo OutKast to the mountainside. There's plenty of room."

He adds, "I don't think anything should be removed; I don't think that's how we should move forward as a culture."

The artist never intended to become a spokesperson on race relations. "There were people who feel like they're under attack right now. I'm no expert; they need to open up a book and realize they're maybe on the wrong side of history," he says.

Williams, who is white, has also been fortunate enough to avoid the potential dangers of racial controversy. He doesn't discuss the issue in public and has not received hateful dissent online.

"No one has sent me death threats or threats of violence," he says. "... I was afraid I would get caught in a debate I couldn't get out of."

Still, he is unafraid to speak out on views that may not resonate among some members of his hometown. "The heat is on racism right now, which is good," Williams says. "Until the guy in Blackshear, Ga., feels embarrassed or afraid to fly the Confederate flag on his pickup truck, we have a long way to go."

Williams knew that adding Atlanta's famed rap duo to the mountain would be unlikely. He didn't create an execution plan or even consider next steps, but he appears pleased with what is already happening.

"I'll be more engaged and more involved, be more of a participant of what's next for the South and the United States," he says. "If André and Big Boi were interested in doing something with the artwork, I would love to be involved."

With additional reporting by Gavin Godfrey.             13083841 14954775                          Call to add OutKast to Stone Mountain sparks discussion on symbolism and race "
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Monday July 27, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Big Boi, petition organizer Mack Williams, and local fans share their thoughts on who, if anyone, should replace the Confederate memorial | more...
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  string(58) "Bruce Munro brings "Light" to the Atlanta Botanical Garden"
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  string(6432) "A hundred years ago, Marcel Duchamp hugely influenced painting and sculpture when he showed that unexpected things could be turned into art. He did this by enlarging the idea of a "found object," which he called a "readymade." This is any ordinary object that is displayed as art and so becomes art. Duchamp's readymades, such as a glass vial full of Parisian air and a porcelain urinal, are now seen as helping to define 20th century art.

??
Today, as plastic replaces glass and porcelain in our throwaway society, artists like Bruce Munro can draw on new types of readymades. Munro combines appreciation of light in nature with the use of readymades in his exhibition Light in the Garden, installed in May at six sites in the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

??
Munro was born in England but also has roots in Australia, which has influenced his distinctive artistry. After earning an art degree in the U.K., he moved to Sydney, where his job was to make display signs using a plastic that glows under ultraviolet light. Though this experience plays into his art, it could have happened anywhere. What's more important is that Munro had a uniquely Australian moment when in 1992 he visited the great natural feature called Uluru (also known as Ayers Rock). Rising out of the desert in the midst of the Outback, this enormous sandstone monolith glows red at dawn and sunset and stands out even more than Georgia's Stone Mountain. It has spiritual meaning, too, for it is sacred to the local aborigines.

??
Munro, who comes across in person as both solidly grounded and wide open to any kind of inspiration, felt what he calls an "ever present zing of something special" at Uluru. The site energized him, he writes in his book Catching the Light, with a vision of life springing out of the desert, as when rain makes the arid environment suddenly blossom. In 2004, he expressed this vision in the big outdoor installation "Field of Light." Its theme was light interacting with nature, shown by myriads of flower-like vertical stems holding glowing globes of light and placed in a large field near Munro's home in England.

??
Since then, Munro continues to show light within nature in different large-scale outdoor installations including several in the U.S. "Forest of Light," his latest version of this signature work within Light in the Garden, occupies the Storza Woods, a hardwood forest at one end of the Garden. The work consists of tens of thousands of light sources on stems scattered throughout the forest floor. They are interconnected via optical fiber, thin glass conduits that carry light of any color to any desired location, and they can be viewed at ground level or from the elevated Canopy Walk that winds through the Woods. Peering down as twilight and then darkness settle in, you see one set of lights, then another and another, start to glow, each in its own muted color. The process and the final effect are natural, beautiful, and slightly disorienting, like an enhanced reflection of the constellation of lights in the night sky.

??
Other elements in the exhibition are more sculptural. Placed in indoor Garden venues are "Three Degrees," a set of three sinuous shapes reminiscent, in Munro's telling, of curvaceous female forms; and "Eden Blooms," fanciful alien-looking floral forms with bright colors that might have come from some distant tropical planet. "Swing Low" is an outdoors arrangement of light-filled spheres suspended over water.

??
The remaining two, "Beacon" and "Water-Towers," are where Munro uses his readymades, which could not be more ordinary and ubiquitous. They are transparent plastic water bottles, like those you buy filled with purified water at your local convenience store or supermarket.

??
When asked if he was thinking of Duchamp when he deciding to use the bottles, Munro says that it was a pragmatic choice, made because they were cheap. But, he adds, the decision was also based on "one of those fortunate moments when I spotted the beauty of a stack of bottles in a retail store ... the work of Duchamp, Picasso, et al, had seeped into my subconscious."

??
Munro creates what could be called "bottled light" by filling the water bottles with the same kind of optical fiber as in "Forest of Light." The colored light the fiber carries diffuses through the plastic to give the whole bottle a rich glow. In "Water-Towers," bottles are stacked in 20 separate six-foot-tall cylinders, placed around the Garden's Aquatic Plant Pond. At night, each column is luminous with a single color that changes as the cylinders cycle through different shades. The effect is of a hi-tech update of some ancient columned structure like a Greek temple.

??
"Beacon," located near the Garden's Great Lawn, works in both daylight and darkness. Its framework is made of girders forming a big geodesic dome 15 feet across. The open triangular spaces in the geodesic pattern are filled with nearly 3,000 water bottles pointing inward and again containing optical fiber. During the day, you can look through the bottles to see the intricate internal engineering, and if you step back, the structure resembles an enormous faceted diamond. At night, when varied jewel tones piped in by the optical fiber are visible, it becomes any gem you want it to be or the best kaleidoscope ever.

??
Munro's artistic use of light has appeared in many venues, from gardens to cathedrals in the U.S. and U.K. Asked about his Atlanta exhibition, he says it was a privilege to help inaugurate the next stage in the development of the Storza Woods, and that he especially liked its unique Canopy Walk. But among all his varied artistic experiences, Australia still exerts a special pull.

??
Munro finds inspiration in the offbeat film The Last Wave by director Peter Weir, an unsettling story based on aboriginal mythology about impending global catastrophe. Expressing this "dream world" in light is a future project for the artist. Then there is his continuing engagement with Uluru, which he has just revisited in hopes of celebrating his 1992 revelation with a new "Field of Light."

??
"'The Field of Light' at Uluru has been 23-year journey so it's essential I reduce the time lag between concept and execution," Munro says. "Getting older makes time a very precious commodity!"

??
Fortunately, Munro, Uluru, and even plastic readymades — should he need them — will be with us for a long time to come."
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??
Today, as plastic replaces glass and porcelain in our throwaway society, artists like Bruce Munro can draw on new types of readymades. Munro combines appreciation of light in nature with the use of readymades in his exhibition ''[http://atlantabg.org/events-classes/events/bruce-munro-light|Light in the Garden]'', installed in May at six sites in the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

??
Munro was born in England but also has roots in Australia, which has influenced his distinctive artistry. After earning an art degree in the U.K., he moved to Sydney, where his job was to make display signs using a plastic that glows under ultraviolet light. Though this experience plays into his art, it could have happened anywhere. What's more important is that Munro had a uniquely Australian moment when in 1992 he visited the great natural feature called Uluru (also known as [http://www.crystalinks.com/ayersrock.html|Ayers Rock]). Rising out of the desert in the midst of the Outback, this enormous sandstone monolith glows red at dawn and sunset and stands out even more than Georgia's Stone Mountain. It has spiritual meaning, too, for it is sacred to the local aborigines.

??
Munro, who comes across in person as both solidly grounded and wide open to any kind of inspiration, felt what he calls an "ever present zing of something special" at Uluru. The site energized him, he writes in his book ''Catching the Light'', with a vision of life springing out of the desert, as when rain makes the arid environment suddenly blossom. In 2004, he expressed this vision in the big outdoor installation "Field of Light." Its theme was light interacting with nature, shown by myriads of flower-like vertical stems holding glowing globes of light and placed in a large field near Munro's home in England.

??
Since then, Munro continues to show light within nature in different large-scale outdoor installations including several in the U.S. "Forest of Light," his latest version of this signature work within ''Light in the Garden'', occupies the Storza Woods, a hardwood forest at one end of the Garden. The work consists of tens of thousands of light sources on stems scattered throughout the forest floor. They are interconnected via optical fiber, thin glass conduits that carry light of any color to any desired location, and they can be viewed at ground level or from the elevated Canopy Walk that winds through the Woods. Peering down as twilight and then darkness settle in, you see one set of lights, then another and another, start to glow, each in its own muted color. The process and the final effect are natural, beautiful, and slightly disorienting, like an enhanced reflection of the constellation of lights in the night sky.

??
Other elements in the exhibition are more sculptural. Placed in indoor Garden venues are "Three Degrees," a set of three sinuous shapes reminiscent, in Munro's telling, of curvaceous female forms; and "Eden Blooms," fanciful alien-looking floral forms with bright colors that might have come from some distant tropical planet. "Swing Low" is an outdoors arrangement of light-filled spheres suspended over water.

??
The remaining two, "Beacon" and "Water-Towers," are where Munro uses his readymades, which could not be more ordinary and ubiquitous. They are transparent plastic water bottles, like those you buy filled with purified water at your local convenience store or supermarket.

??
When asked if he was thinking of Duchamp when he deciding to use the bottles, Munro says that it was a pragmatic choice, made because they were cheap. But, he adds, the decision was also based on "one of those fortunate moments when I spotted the beauty of a stack of bottles in a retail store ... the work of Duchamp, Picasso, et al, had seeped into my subconscious."

??
Munro creates what could be called "bottled light" by filling the water bottles with the same kind of optical fiber as in "Forest of Light." The colored light the fiber carries diffuses through the plastic to give the whole bottle a rich glow. In "Water-Towers," bottles are stacked in 20 separate six-foot-tall cylinders, placed around the Garden's Aquatic Plant Pond. At night, each column is luminous with a single color that changes as the cylinders cycle through different shades. The effect is of a hi-tech update of some ancient columned structure like a Greek temple.

??
"Beacon," located near the Garden's Great Lawn, works in both daylight and darkness. Its framework is made of girders forming a big geodesic dome 15 feet across. The open triangular spaces in the geodesic pattern are filled with nearly 3,000 water bottles pointing inward and again containing optical fiber. During the day, you can look through the bottles to see the intricate internal engineering, and if you step back, the structure resembles an enormous faceted diamond. At night, when varied jewel tones piped in by the optical fiber are visible, it becomes any gem you want it to be or the best kaleidoscope ever.

??
Munro's artistic use of light has appeared in many venues, from gardens to cathedrals in the U.S. and U.K. Asked about his Atlanta exhibition, he says it was a privilege to help inaugurate the next stage in the development of the Storza Woods, and that he especially liked its unique Canopy Walk. But among all his varied artistic experiences, Australia still exerts a special pull.

??
Munro finds inspiration in the offbeat film ''[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0076299/|The Last Wave]'' by director Peter Weir, an unsettling story based on aboriginal mythology about impending global catastrophe. Expressing this "dream world" in light is a future project for the artist. Then there is his continuing engagement with Uluru, which he has just revisited in hopes of celebrating his 1992 revelation with a new "[http://www.discoverygreen.com/fieldoflight|Field of Light]."

??
"'The Field of Light' at Uluru has been 23-year journey so it's essential I reduce the time lag between concept and execution," Munro says. "Getting older makes time a very precious commodity!"

??
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??
Today, as plastic replaces glass and porcelain in our throwaway society, artists like Bruce Munro can draw on new types of readymades. Munro combines appreciation of light in nature with the use of readymades in his exhibition Light in the Garden, installed in May at six sites in the Atlanta Botanical Garden.

??
Munro was born in England but also has roots in Australia, which has influenced his distinctive artistry. After earning an art degree in the U.K., he moved to Sydney, where his job was to make display signs using a plastic that glows under ultraviolet light. Though this experience plays into his art, it could have happened anywhere. What's more important is that Munro had a uniquely Australian moment when in 1992 he visited the great natural feature called Uluru (also known as Ayers Rock). Rising out of the desert in the midst of the Outback, this enormous sandstone monolith glows red at dawn and sunset and stands out even more than Georgia's Stone Mountain. It has spiritual meaning, too, for it is sacred to the local aborigines.

??
Munro, who comes across in person as both solidly grounded and wide open to any kind of inspiration, felt what he calls an "ever present zing of something special" at Uluru. The site energized him, he writes in his book Catching the Light, with a vision of life springing out of the desert, as when rain makes the arid environment suddenly blossom. In 2004, he expressed this vision in the big outdoor installation "Field of Light." Its theme was light interacting with nature, shown by myriads of flower-like vertical stems holding glowing globes of light and placed in a large field near Munro's home in England.

??
Since then, Munro continues to show light within nature in different large-scale outdoor installations including several in the U.S. "Forest of Light," his latest version of this signature work within Light in the Garden, occupies the Storza Woods, a hardwood forest at one end of the Garden. The work consists of tens of thousands of light sources on stems scattered throughout the forest floor. They are interconnected via optical fiber, thin glass conduits that carry light of any color to any desired location, and they can be viewed at ground level or from the elevated Canopy Walk that winds through the Woods. Peering down as twilight and then darkness settle in, you see one set of lights, then another and another, start to glow, each in its own muted color. The process and the final effect are natural, beautiful, and slightly disorienting, like an enhanced reflection of the constellation of lights in the night sky.

??
Other elements in the exhibition are more sculptural. Placed in indoor Garden venues are "Three Degrees," a set of three sinuous shapes reminiscent, in Munro's telling, of curvaceous female forms; and "Eden Blooms," fanciful alien-looking floral forms with bright colors that might have come from some distant tropical planet. "Swing Low" is an outdoors arrangement of light-filled spheres suspended over water.

??
The remaining two, "Beacon" and "Water-Towers," are where Munro uses his readymades, which could not be more ordinary and ubiquitous. They are transparent plastic water bottles, like those you buy filled with purified water at your local convenience store or supermarket.

??
When asked if he was thinking of Duchamp when he deciding to use the bottles, Munro says that it was a pragmatic choice, made because they were cheap. But, he adds, the decision was also based on "one of those fortunate moments when I spotted the beauty of a stack of bottles in a retail store ... the work of Duchamp, Picasso, et al, had seeped into my subconscious."

??
Munro creates what could be called "bottled light" by filling the water bottles with the same kind of optical fiber as in "Forest of Light." The colored light the fiber carries diffuses through the plastic to give the whole bottle a rich glow. In "Water-Towers," bottles are stacked in 20 separate six-foot-tall cylinders, placed around the Garden's Aquatic Plant Pond. At night, each column is luminous with a single color that changes as the cylinders cycle through different shades. The effect is of a hi-tech update of some ancient columned structure like a Greek temple.

??
"Beacon," located near the Garden's Great Lawn, works in both daylight and darkness. Its framework is made of girders forming a big geodesic dome 15 feet across. The open triangular spaces in the geodesic pattern are filled with nearly 3,000 water bottles pointing inward and again containing optical fiber. During the day, you can look through the bottles to see the intricate internal engineering, and if you step back, the structure resembles an enormous faceted diamond. At night, when varied jewel tones piped in by the optical fiber are visible, it becomes any gem you want it to be or the best kaleidoscope ever.

??
Munro's artistic use of light has appeared in many venues, from gardens to cathedrals in the U.S. and U.K. Asked about his Atlanta exhibition, he says it was a privilege to help inaugurate the next stage in the development of the Storza Woods, and that he especially liked its unique Canopy Walk. But among all his varied artistic experiences, Australia still exerts a special pull.

??
Munro finds inspiration in the offbeat film The Last Wave by director Peter Weir, an unsettling story based on aboriginal mythology about impending global catastrophe. Expressing this "dream world" in light is a future project for the artist. Then there is his continuing engagement with Uluru, which he has just revisited in hopes of celebrating his 1992 revelation with a new "Field of Light."

??
"'The Field of Light' at Uluru has been 23-year journey so it's essential I reduce the time lag between concept and execution," Munro says. "Getting older makes time a very precious commodity!"

??
Fortunately, Munro, Uluru, and even plastic readymades — should he need them — will be with us for a long time to come.             13083695 14776095                          Bruce Munro brings "Light" to the Atlanta Botanical Garden "
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Monday July 13, 2015 04:00 am EDT
British artist channels Duchamp and Picasso to create show out of readymades | more...
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  string(4227) "If you're not an art enthusiast, the idea of hanging out in a gallery can be a little intimidating. But the owners of ZuCot Gallery are hoping to put an end to the unfounded fears.

"People think you have to be an expert to enjoy an art gallery," says Onaje Henderson, co-founder of ZuCot. "We're trying to do away with that idea."

Now heading into its fifth year in the Castleberry Hills area, ZuCot is owned by brothers Omari and Onaje Henderson and friend Troy Taylor. Their presence in Atlanta's art scene has been both welcome and enlightening because their take on art is a little different than average.

First off, none of the owners are artists; all three are engineers by trade, specializing in mechanical, chemical, and aerospace engineering, respectively. The Hendersons' father, however, was a painter, so they both fell in love with art at an early age. In fact, Onaje says they were "submerged in art," and after college, the brothers wanted to help their dad with the business side of things.

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One of their main concerns as gallery owners is ensuring everyone, including novice art buyers, feel welcome in their space. More importantly, the Hendersons hope people can understand that loving art isn't a pretentious past time, nor does it require a degree in art history.

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"We see the value of collecting their work and its relevancy. We use artwork to determine how past generations lived, to discover who they were as a people," Onaje says. "Art speaks to who we are as human beings in a sense, especially with African-American artists. We have a story to tell, a different story than anyone else's and it's grossly under-told in America. That's a niche that we found to be very important and one we wanted to concentrate on."

To that end, their latest exhibition, Spectrum, aims to explore two varying narratives coming from very different artists. Specifically, the 30-piece collection, which runs through mid-August, refers to the spectrum of colors artists use for expression. Featuring the work of Julio Mejia and Steve A. Prince, the connecting element, Onaje says, is all of the art comes from the heart. Prince's work draws mainly from the relationship he has with his wife, while Mejia's work explores the emotions he was left with after surviving the embassy bombings in Peru.

"Everything we have in the gallery has a meaning behind it," Onaje maintains. "We communicate what the artist was thinking with our exhibitions."

Onaje adds that ZuCot is interested in more than simply displaying worthy art, but wants to share what the artists think about their pieces as well, so that potential buyers always have a point of reference. It's all part of the relaxed learning experience offered by the gallery.

"Art is currency," the 36-year-old Onaje stresses, adding that he wants the black community in particular to appreciate the value in art investment. "Specifically, with young people, we don't understand that side of investing," he says. "We have people in the world right now fighting over artwork from World War II. There's an intrinsic value and financial value. We don't collect our own culture. But as human beings we don't collect enough culture in general. That's something we're hoping to help address.""
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"People think you have to be an expert [[to enjoy an art gallery]," says Onaje Henderson, co-founder of ZuCot. "We're trying to do away with that idea."

Now heading into its fifth year in the Castleberry Hills area, ZuCot is owned by brothers Omari and Onaje Henderson and friend Troy Taylor. Their presence in Atlanta's art scene has been both welcome and enlightening because their take on art is a little different than average.

First off, none of the owners are artists; all three are engineers by trade, specializing in mechanical, chemical, and aerospace engineering, respectively. The Hendersons' father, however, was a painter, so they both fell in love with art at an early age. In fact, Onaje says they were "submerged in art," and after college, the brothers wanted to help their dad with the business side of things.

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"We want African-American works to be respected and seen on the same level of other artists," Onaje says, insisting that thus far, ZuCot's efforts have been well-received.

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Onaje adds that ZuCot is interested in more than simply displaying worthy art, but wants to share what the artists think about their pieces as well, so that potential buyers always have a point of reference. It's all part of the relaxed learning experience offered by the gallery.

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  string(4593) "    Castleberry Hill art house offers space to learn about and invest in African-American art   2015-07-09T08:00:00+00:00 Spectrum' brings ZuCot Gallery"s mission to life ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Jacinta Howard 1306412 2015-07-09T08:00:00+00:00  If you're not an art enthusiast, the idea of hanging out in a gallery can be a little intimidating. But the owners of ZuCot Gallery are hoping to put an end to the unfounded fears.

"People think you have to be an expert to enjoy an art gallery," says Onaje Henderson, co-founder of ZuCot. "We're trying to do away with that idea."

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"We wanted to make sure our generation becomes art collectors," Onaje says. "We made sure we offered education components to the gallery as well. We talk about how to collect, what to collect, and why."

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"We want African-American works to be respected and seen on the same level of other artists," Onaje says, insisting that thus far, ZuCot's efforts have been well-received.

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To that end, their latest exhibition, Spectrum, aims to explore two varying narratives coming from very different artists. Specifically, the 30-piece collection, which runs through mid-August, refers to the spectrum of colors artists use for expression. Featuring the work of Julio Mejia and Steve A. Prince, the connecting element, Onaje says, is all of the art comes from the heart. Prince's work draws mainly from the relationship he has with his wife, while Mejia's work explores the emotions he was left with after surviving the embassy bombings in Peru.

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Onaje adds that ZuCot is interested in more than simply displaying worthy art, but wants to share what the artists think about their pieces as well, so that potential buyers always have a point of reference. It's all part of the relaxed learning experience offered by the gallery.

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Thursday July 9, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Castleberry Hill art house offers space to learn about and invest in African-American art | more...
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  string(2422) "Artist Martha Whittington likes to hone in on the details. Every piece in her new show at Dashboard Co-op, Exchange, was carefully handcrafted in her studio. After studying early indigenous techniques, she began to build freestanding sculptures as a way to explore the commoditization of Native American culture.

??
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??
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"The hard part with this work is that I didn't want it to become trite and look like dream catchers. I wanted to pay tribute to the culture, but also look at the removal of their culture," Whittington says. "The assimilation; this was the most interesting part during my research. There were the training lodges. They would almost do a sweatshop and hire an entire tribe of women weavers and then have them use Asian patterns."

??
Along with a sound element from composer Rae Long, the exhibition features a large drum that took Whittington two weeks to build, and Native American burial scaffolding that borrows its techniques from different tribes. Whereas a piece may include elk hide and look authentic, Whittington says they're actually coming from more present-day home improvement store chains, further adding to the theme of commoditization.

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"Yes, they are contemporary materials like poplar wood from Home Depot or stainless bolts that are polished, but they have a contemporary spin in that they are abstract," she says, adding that her focus is making the idea of trade (or exchange) tangible. " ... What did it look like, what did it feel like, what did it sound like if you were one of the original people being attracted to a shiny object.""
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??
In line with ''Exchange'', part of the [http://www.ocaatlanta.com/?post_type=programs&p=323|Artist Project Grant] from the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA), Whittington's work focuses on sculptures that showcase themes of hard labor, technology's influence on the workforce, and the unsung characters of the blue-collar industries, past and present.

??
"The hard part with this work is that I didn't want it to become trite and look like dream catchers. I wanted to pay tribute to the culture, but also look at the removal of their culture," Whittington says. "The assimilation; this was the most interesting part during my research. There were the training lodges. They would almost do a sweatshop and hire an entire tribe of women weavers and then have them use Asian patterns."

??
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??
"Yes, they are contemporary materials like poplar wood from Home Depot or stainless bolts that are polished, but they have a contemporary spin in that they are abstract," she says, adding that her focus is making the idea of trade (or exchange) tangible. " ... What did it look like, what did it feel like, what did it sound like if you were one of the original people being attracted to a shiny object.""
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  string(2778) "    Sculpture artist explores themes of commoditization via the lens of Native American culture   2015-07-02T08:00:00+00:00 Martha Whittington examines the human experience in 'Exchange'   Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-07-02T08:00:00+00:00  Artist Martha Whittington likes to hone in on the details. Every piece in her new show at Dashboard Co-op, Exchange, was carefully handcrafted in her studio. After studying early indigenous techniques, she began to build freestanding sculptures as a way to explore the commoditization of Native American culture.

??
The works resemble original pieces, but are made from modern resources as to call out the European faux and Native American-inspired goods.

??
"In particular, I was focusing on the North American natives and when the Europeans started trading," she says. "They had depleted their resources for their fancy hats. That's where I got the idea about commerce and the exchange of inferior goods for something that was very laborious. In Europe, the Industrial Revolution was going on and everything was mass-produced. That's where it began."

??
In line with Exchange, part of the Artist Project Grant from the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA), Whittington's work focuses on sculptures that showcase themes of hard labor, technology's influence on the workforce, and the unsung characters of the blue-collar industries, past and present.

??
"The hard part with this work is that I didn't want it to become trite and look like dream catchers. I wanted to pay tribute to the culture, but also look at the removal of their culture," Whittington says. "The assimilation; this was the most interesting part during my research. There were the training lodges. They would almost do a sweatshop and hire an entire tribe of women weavers and then have them use Asian patterns."

??
Along with a sound element from composer Rae Long, the exhibition features a large drum that took Whittington two weeks to build, and Native American burial scaffolding that borrows its techniques from different tribes. Whereas a piece may include elk hide and look authentic, Whittington says they're actually coming from more present-day home improvement store chains, further adding to the theme of commoditization.

??
"Yes, they are contemporary materials like poplar wood from Home Depot or stainless bolts that are polished, but they have a contemporary spin in that they are abstract," she says, adding that her focus is making the idea of trade (or exchange) tangible. " ... What did it look like, what did it feel like, what did it sound like if you were one of the original people being attracted to a shiny object."             13083554 14663970                          Martha Whittington examines the human experience in 'Exchange' "
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Thursday July 2, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Sculpture artist explores themes of commoditization via the lens of Native American culture | more...
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  string(6262) "The pyramids of ancient Egypt housed the bodies of pharaohs and other great leaders. Artist Fabian Williams' Dungeon Family Pyramid on the Atlanta Beltline began as a unique work of art, only to end as housing for living visitors.

Like other historic monuments, the Dungeon Family project faced challenges in execution. A well-intentioned Kickstarter campaign fell significantly short of the $10,000 goal prior to the pyramid's proposed Sept. 14, 2014, goal date. Working as a full-time solo artist and entrepreneur without a staff proved to be overwhelming. "If you're not prepared to do a full-on campaign, you may as well not even do it," Williams says.

Tired but undeterred, Williams ultimately secured funds from Art on the Atlanta Beltline. The launch of the project fell behind and was not installed until November 2014. The original team of artists he enlisted to help was no longer available. "A lot of people I had lined up couldn't do it, so I wanted to do it myself," he says.

The delayed launch also affected materials. The outer surfaces, but not the internal skeleton, were waterproofed. The change of seasons made the construction obstacles more visible, yet welcoming — a person or people sought the pyramid as a shield from the elements. "It was never built to be shelter," Williams says. "I immediately suspected somebody would try to make it a home."

Williams considered accommodating indigent visitors by adding a floor and even building a door for easier access. Ericka Brown Davis, communications and media relations director for Atlanta Beltline Inc., shared her concerns. "Fabian is a good person with a good heart. He wanted to install light, shelves, and leave books," she says, adding that Williams' enhancements were flatly declined. "It's not safe."

Williams entered the Beltline art fray to pay homage to Atlanta's musical royalty, the Dungeon Family, a 20-plus-member collective who pioneered the eclectic hip-hop sounds of OutKast and Goodie Mob. After many ideas and sketches, he designed a small-scale model of what was to become the 8-foot-tall and 12-foot-wide pyramid.

Last July, Williams was selected as one of 100 visual and performance artists to create original work for temporary display along the Beltline. The pyramid, to be placed at the Beltline's 11.7-mile marker, came after the close of OutKast's 40-city world tour. Building a standing structure seemed like the perfect way to honor the Dungeon Family's influence on his creativity.

"When I listen to their music, I see pyramids and UFOs," he says. "A lot of art is done from feeling and that's what I felt."

The determined visual artist consulted DF member Backbone to gain insight into the way the members could be depicted. The final product was created with four sides featuring a muscled André 3000, an angelic-looking Big Boi, Goodie Mob, Joi, Janelle Monaé, Organized Noize, Big Rube, and a hieroglyphic wall with all members listed in name. The piece was topped by a clear glass capstone, which Williams wanted to originally use to filter lasers in a light display that "allows smoke to escape like a beacon from the highway." The lights were banned by the Beltline, as they could present a fire hazard.

In March, Beltline officials informed Williams that the glass capstone was missing. It was never replaced. By May, he was contacted not only to learn that the bottom hieroglyphic panel was removed, but there appeared to be evidence of someone living inside. Williams posted video to his Instagram page, @occasionalsuperstar, revealing the damage and evidence of inhabitation: several pairs of sneakers, sleeping bags, backpacks, and trash. "I'm not really mad at it. It's shelter. I just wish they would keep it clean tho," reads the caption under the video.

The contract Williams had with the Beltline stipulated that no artwork could be used as shelter. "From the inside it's no longer art," Davis says. "We appreciate the beauty of what Williams did, but it is now damaged artwork." Williams was given a week to remove it. The pyramid's tenants were never seen, but evidence of their presence shined a light on a very real problem.

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs reported that at least 16,000 people were homeless in Georgia as of January 2014. Also, the Metro Atlanta Tri-Jurisdictional Collaborative on Homelessness (Tri-J) counted more than 6,000 people with inadequate housing listed as "living on the streets, in shelters, and transitional housing in the city and counties."

The structure's use as a form of shelter brought the poetry of Dungeon Family's Goodie Mob to new life. The sentiment in the musical content such as Khujo's verse in "Chain Swang" from the World Party album ring true: "Poverty stricken, hand pickin,' in the corner cleansin'/Lights out poor, slip and you nails hell." Goodie Mob and Khujo were even more direct on the existential "Is That You God" with the words, "I think about all the homeless folk when it rains."

Conversations about the unintended use of the artwork helped the pyramid itself find a new home. Through Instagram, Nuri Icgoren, founder of Urban Sprout Farms, contacted Williams to offer space within the farm's five acres. The pyramid's rebuilding date has yet to be announced.

"They had to find a place and move very soon, and we definitely have a space here," Icgoren says. "I love the Dungeon Family, anyway. Everything came together for a reason."

Remnants of the unseen visitor or visitors remained intact until the pyramid's disassembly in early June. Williams, Icgoren, and journalist Maurice Garland, along with the Beltline's design director E. Fred Yalouris and art and culture project coordinator Elan Buchen, took the pyramid down to prepare it for reassembly on the farm. Buchen is optimistic. "It's great to see it live on in a different form," he says. "To do a sculpture outdoors is ambitious."

Williams is still interested in using his art to raise awareness and is thinking ahead about possible issues. "I would love to make a piece that would serve as shelter for someone. I would have to consider people with mental illness," he says. "... There needs to be a place where people can rest their heads in dignity.""
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Like other historic monuments, the Dungeon Family project faced challenges in execution. A well-intentioned Kickstarter campaign fell significantly short of the $10,000 goal prior to the pyramid's proposed Sept. 14, 2014, goal date. Working as a full-time solo artist and entrepreneur without a staff proved to be overwhelming. "If you're not prepared to do a full-on campaign, you may as well not even do it," Williams says.

Tired but undeterred, Williams ultimately secured funds from [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2014/09/19/behold-a-dungeon-family-pyramid-on-the-beltline|Art on the Atlanta Beltline]. The launch of the project fell behind and was not installed until November 2014. The original team of artists he enlisted to help was no longer available. "A lot of people I had lined up couldn't do it, so I wanted to do it myself," he says.

The delayed launch also affected materials. The outer surfaces, but not the internal skeleton, were waterproofed. The change of seasons made the construction obstacles more visible, yet welcoming — a person or people sought the pyramid as a shield from the elements. "It was never built to be shelter," Williams says. "I immediately suspected somebody would try to make it a home."

Williams considered accommodating indigent visitors by adding a floor and even building a door for easier access. Ericka Brown Davis, communications and media relations director for Atlanta Beltline Inc., shared her concerns. "Fabian is a good person with a good heart. He wanted to install light, shelves, and leave books," she says, adding that Williams' enhancements were flatly declined. "It's not safe."

Williams entered the Beltline art fray to pay homage to Atlanta's musical royalty, the Dungeon Family, a 20-plus-member collective who pioneered the eclectic hip-hop sounds of OutKast and Goodie Mob. After many ideas and sketches, he designed a small-scale model of what was to become the 8-foot-tall and 12-foot-wide pyramid.

Last July, Williams was selected as one of 100 visual and performance artists to create original work for temporary display along the Beltline. The pyramid, to be placed at the Beltline's 11.7-mile marker, came after the close of OutKast's 40-city world tour. Building a standing structure seemed like the perfect way to honor the Dungeon Family's influence on his creativity.

"When I listen to their music, I see pyramids and UFOs," he says. "A lot of art is done from feeling and that's what I felt."

The determined visual artist consulted DF member Backbone to gain insight into the way the members could be depicted. The final product was created with four sides featuring a muscled André 3000, an angelic-looking Big Boi, Goodie Mob, Joi, Janelle Monaé, Organized Noize, Big Rube, and a hieroglyphic wall with all members listed in name. The piece was topped by a clear glass capstone, which Williams wanted to originally use to filter lasers in a light display that "allows smoke to escape like a beacon from the highway." The lights were banned by the Beltline, as they could present a fire hazard.

In March, Beltline officials informed Williams that the glass capstone was missing. It was never replaced. By May, he was contacted not only to learn that the bottom hieroglyphic panel was removed, but there appeared to be evidence of someone living inside. Williams posted video to his Instagram page, @occasionalsuperstar, revealing the damage and evidence of inhabitation: several pairs of sneakers, sleeping bags, backpacks, and trash. "I'm not really mad at it. It's shelter. I just wish they would keep it clean tho," reads the caption under the video.

The contract Williams had with the Beltline stipulated that no artwork could be used as shelter. "From the inside it's no longer art," Davis says. "We appreciate the beauty of what Williams did, but it is now damaged artwork." Williams was given a week to remove it. The pyramid's tenants were never seen, but evidence of their presence shined a light on a very real problem.

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs reported that [http://www.dca.state.ga.us/housing/specialneeds/programs/documents/DCAHomelessnessReport2013.pdf|at least 16,000 people were homeless in Georgia] as of January 2014. Also, the Metro Atlanta Tri-Jurisdictional Collaborative on Homelessness (Tri-J) counted [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2013/08/01/report-6664-homeless-people-in-atlanta-fulton-dekalb|more than 6,000 people with inadequate housing] listed as "living on the streets, in shelters, and transitional housing in the city and counties."

The structure's use as a form of shelter brought the poetry of Dungeon Family's Goodie Mob to new life. The sentiment in the musical content such as Khujo's verse in "Chain Swang" from the ''World Party'' album ring true: "Poverty stricken, hand pickin,' in the corner cleansin'/Lights out poor, slip and you nails hell." Goodie Mob and Khujo were even more direct on the existential "Is That You God" with the words, "I think about all the homeless folk when it rains."

Conversations about the unintended use of the artwork helped the pyramid itself find a new home. Through Instagram, [http://clatl.com/atlanta/nuri-icgoren-the-arts-favorite-farmer/Content?oid=13049838|Nuri Icgoren], founder of Urban Sprout Farms, contacted Williams to offer space within the farm's five acres. The pyramid's rebuilding date has yet to be announced.

"They had to find a place and move very soon, and we definitely have a space here," Icgoren says. "I love the Dungeon Family, anyway. Everything came together for a reason."

Remnants of the unseen visitor or visitors remained intact until the pyramid's disassembly in early June. Williams, Icgoren, and journalist Maurice Garland, along with the Beltline's design director E. Fred Yalouris and art and culture project coordinator Elan Buchen, took the pyramid down to prepare it for reassembly on the farm. Buchen is optimistic. "It's great to see it live on in a different form," he says. "To do a sculpture outdoors is ambitious."

Williams is still interested in using his art to raise awareness and is thinking ahead about possible issues. "I would love to make a piece that would serve as shelter for someone. I would have to consider people with mental illness," he says. "... There needs to be a place where people can rest their heads in dignity.""
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Like other historic monuments, the Dungeon Family project faced challenges in execution. A well-intentioned Kickstarter campaign fell significantly short of the $10,000 goal prior to the pyramid's proposed Sept. 14, 2014, goal date. Working as a full-time solo artist and entrepreneur without a staff proved to be overwhelming. "If you're not prepared to do a full-on campaign, you may as well not even do it," Williams says.

Tired but undeterred, Williams ultimately secured funds from Art on the Atlanta Beltline. The launch of the project fell behind and was not installed until November 2014. The original team of artists he enlisted to help was no longer available. "A lot of people I had lined up couldn't do it, so I wanted to do it myself," he says.

The delayed launch also affected materials. The outer surfaces, but not the internal skeleton, were waterproofed. The change of seasons made the construction obstacles more visible, yet welcoming — a person or people sought the pyramid as a shield from the elements. "It was never built to be shelter," Williams says. "I immediately suspected somebody would try to make it a home."

Williams considered accommodating indigent visitors by adding a floor and even building a door for easier access. Ericka Brown Davis, communications and media relations director for Atlanta Beltline Inc., shared her concerns. "Fabian is a good person with a good heart. He wanted to install light, shelves, and leave books," she says, adding that Williams' enhancements were flatly declined. "It's not safe."

Williams entered the Beltline art fray to pay homage to Atlanta's musical royalty, the Dungeon Family, a 20-plus-member collective who pioneered the eclectic hip-hop sounds of OutKast and Goodie Mob. After many ideas and sketches, he designed a small-scale model of what was to become the 8-foot-tall and 12-foot-wide pyramid.

Last July, Williams was selected as one of 100 visual and performance artists to create original work for temporary display along the Beltline. The pyramid, to be placed at the Beltline's 11.7-mile marker, came after the close of OutKast's 40-city world tour. Building a standing structure seemed like the perfect way to honor the Dungeon Family's influence on his creativity.

"When I listen to their music, I see pyramids and UFOs," he says. "A lot of art is done from feeling and that's what I felt."

The determined visual artist consulted DF member Backbone to gain insight into the way the members could be depicted. The final product was created with four sides featuring a muscled André 3000, an angelic-looking Big Boi, Goodie Mob, Joi, Janelle Monaé, Organized Noize, Big Rube, and a hieroglyphic wall with all members listed in name. The piece was topped by a clear glass capstone, which Williams wanted to originally use to filter lasers in a light display that "allows smoke to escape like a beacon from the highway." The lights were banned by the Beltline, as they could present a fire hazard.

In March, Beltline officials informed Williams that the glass capstone was missing. It was never replaced. By May, he was contacted not only to learn that the bottom hieroglyphic panel was removed, but there appeared to be evidence of someone living inside. Williams posted video to his Instagram page, @occasionalsuperstar, revealing the damage and evidence of inhabitation: several pairs of sneakers, sleeping bags, backpacks, and trash. "I'm not really mad at it. It's shelter. I just wish they would keep it clean tho," reads the caption under the video.

The contract Williams had with the Beltline stipulated that no artwork could be used as shelter. "From the inside it's no longer art," Davis says. "We appreciate the beauty of what Williams did, but it is now damaged artwork." Williams was given a week to remove it. The pyramid's tenants were never seen, but evidence of their presence shined a light on a very real problem.

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs reported that at least 16,000 people were homeless in Georgia as of January 2014. Also, the Metro Atlanta Tri-Jurisdictional Collaborative on Homelessness (Tri-J) counted more than 6,000 people with inadequate housing listed as "living on the streets, in shelters, and transitional housing in the city and counties."

The structure's use as a form of shelter brought the poetry of Dungeon Family's Goodie Mob to new life. The sentiment in the musical content such as Khujo's verse in "Chain Swang" from the World Party album ring true: "Poverty stricken, hand pickin,' in the corner cleansin'/Lights out poor, slip and you nails hell." Goodie Mob and Khujo were even more direct on the existential "Is That You God" with the words, "I think about all the homeless folk when it rains."

Conversations about the unintended use of the artwork helped the pyramid itself find a new home. Through Instagram, Nuri Icgoren, founder of Urban Sprout Farms, contacted Williams to offer space within the farm's five acres. The pyramid's rebuilding date has yet to be announced.

"They had to find a place and move very soon, and we definitely have a space here," Icgoren says. "I love the Dungeon Family, anyway. Everything came together for a reason."

Remnants of the unseen visitor or visitors remained intact until the pyramid's disassembly in early June. Williams, Icgoren, and journalist Maurice Garland, along with the Beltline's design director E. Fred Yalouris and art and culture project coordinator Elan Buchen, took the pyramid down to prepare it for reassembly on the farm. Buchen is optimistic. "It's great to see it live on in a different form," he says. "To do a sculpture outdoors is ambitious."

Williams is still interested in using his art to raise awareness and is thinking ahead about possible issues. "I would love to make a piece that would serve as shelter for someone. I would have to consider people with mental illness," he says. "... There needs to be a place where people can rest their heads in dignity."       0,0,10      13083469 14575229                          Fabian Williams" Dungeon Family pyramid finds a new home "
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Thursday June 25, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Damaged art installation turned into a poetic statement about the plight of Atlanta's homeless | more...
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  string(3146) "Design and print studio Mindzai Creative is ready for a makeover. After eight years in Thunderbox in Old Fourth Ward, Mindzai is relocating to a Little Five Points storefront, only a few doors down from Criminal Records.

Founded in 1996, Mindzai Creative started out as recording studio and quickly evolved into a design and print full-service shop that specializes in helping artists of all various mediums create good-quality marketing materials and screen printing. After a 60-day notice alerting Mindzai and other businesses of the sale of the Thunderbox building, General Manager Susannah Caviness and the Mindzai team embarked on a journey to find the perfect place for the shop.

"A lot of those newer spaces were half the size and triple the cost," Caviness says. "We got really lucky with finding a storefront in Little Five Points that I felt would suit our needs and benefit us the most. I'm really looking forward to being so close to Criminal Records, too! In fact, it was a bit of a 'blessing in disguise' because we were able to find a new home for Mindzai Atlanta that I am very excited about and very excited to share with the community."

Due to increased foot traffic and added storefront, Mindzai will now include a boutique for its new apparel line and host monthly gallery shows and events. Caviness hopes the print studio becomes more accessible to local artists and businesses with the new location and extended opening hours. "I think it's not only going to be great exposure for us as a small business, but really beneficial for all the amazing artists we work with," she says.

To celebrate the new location and gallery space, Mindzai collaborated with artist and tattooer Sam Parker for his last solo show in Atlanta, One Last Thing and Then I'll Go. Parker will show original artwork in the gallery in the coming months.

"We have all admired Sam's work for such a long time," Caviness says. "I love his work with sacred geometry. He was part of our 'Art Basel in Atlanta' show back in February and the idea just sort of came up. He wanted to do a solo show before he moved to Colorado and I jumped at the chance to host it. Sam's show will include originals as well as limited-edition Giclée prints that we are in the process of making for him."

That's one of many upcoming shows and workshops planned in the coming months. The studio hopes to offer classes such as wood-burning, watercolor, figure drawing, and others and bring in new artists to promote within the gallery space. There's also talk of bringing artists David "Bonethrower" Cook, Tara McPherson, and Allison Sommers into the space for different exhibitions.

"I can't promise anything, but I hope we can make something happen with them," Caviness says. "I will still curate and manage all of the shows and shop moving forward. It's been a total dream meeting so many talented and creative people. I'm really excited for everyone to see how we change the space and how we can be an even greater part of Atlanta's growing creative circle."

Editor's Note: This story has been modified to reflect updates on the grand re-opening and Sam Parker's show."
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Founded in 1996, Mindzai Creative started out as recording studio and quickly evolved into a design and print full-service shop that specializes in helping artists of all various mediums create good-quality marketing materials and screen printing. After a 60-day notice alerting Mindzai and other businesses of the sale of the Thunderbox building, General Manager [http://commoncreativatlanta.com/?p=6382|Susannah Caviness] and the Mindzai team embarked on a journey to find the perfect place for the shop.

"A lot of those newer spaces were half the size and triple the cost," Caviness says. "We got really lucky with finding a storefront in Little Five Points that I felt would suit our needs and benefit us the most. I'm really looking forward to being so close to Criminal Records, too! In fact, it was a bit of a 'blessing in disguise' because we were able to find a new home for Mindzai Atlanta that I am very excited about and very excited to share with the community."

Due to increased foot traffic and added storefront, Mindzai will now include a boutique for its new apparel line and host monthly gallery shows and events. Caviness hopes the print studio becomes more accessible to local artists and businesses with the new location and extended opening hours. "I think it's not only going to be great exposure for us as a small business, but really beneficial for all the amazing artists we work with," she says.

To celebrate the new location and gallery space, Mindzai collaborated with artist and tattooer [http://sparkerartist.com/|Sam Parker] for his last solo show in Atlanta, ''One Last Thing and Then I'll Go''. Parker will show original artwork in the gallery in the coming months.

"We have all admired Sam's work for such a long time," Caviness says. "I love his work with sacred geometry. He was part of our 'Art Basel in Atlanta' show back in February and the idea just sort of came up. He wanted to do a solo show before he moved to Colorado and I jumped at the chance to host it. Sam's show will include originals as well as limited-edition Giclée prints that we are in the process of making for him."

That's one of many upcoming shows and workshops planned in the coming months. The studio hopes to offer classes such as wood-burning, watercolor, figure drawing, and others and bring in new artists to promote within the gallery space. There's also talk of bringing artists [http://dmcook.tumblr.com/|David "Bonethrower" Cook], [http://www.taramcpherson.com/|Tara McPherson], and [http://allisonsommers.com/|Allison Sommers] into the space for different exhibitions.

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  string(3468) "    Design shop and studio celebrates grand re-opening with artist Sam Parker's last Atlanta show   2015-05-19T08:00:00+00:00 Mindzai Creative moves to Little Five Points   Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-05-19T08:00:00+00:00  Design and print studio Mindzai Creative is ready for a makeover. After eight years in Thunderbox in Old Fourth Ward, Mindzai is relocating to a Little Five Points storefront, only a few doors down from Criminal Records.

Founded in 1996, Mindzai Creative started out as recording studio and quickly evolved into a design and print full-service shop that specializes in helping artists of all various mediums create good-quality marketing materials and screen printing. After a 60-day notice alerting Mindzai and other businesses of the sale of the Thunderbox building, General Manager Susannah Caviness and the Mindzai team embarked on a journey to find the perfect place for the shop.

"A lot of those newer spaces were half the size and triple the cost," Caviness says. "We got really lucky with finding a storefront in Little Five Points that I felt would suit our needs and benefit us the most. I'm really looking forward to being so close to Criminal Records, too! In fact, it was a bit of a 'blessing in disguise' because we were able to find a new home for Mindzai Atlanta that I am very excited about and very excited to share with the community."

Due to increased foot traffic and added storefront, Mindzai will now include a boutique for its new apparel line and host monthly gallery shows and events. Caviness hopes the print studio becomes more accessible to local artists and businesses with the new location and extended opening hours. "I think it's not only going to be great exposure for us as a small business, but really beneficial for all the amazing artists we work with," she says.

To celebrate the new location and gallery space, Mindzai collaborated with artist and tattooer Sam Parker for his last solo show in Atlanta, One Last Thing and Then I'll Go. Parker will show original artwork in the gallery in the coming months.

"We have all admired Sam's work for such a long time," Caviness says. "I love his work with sacred geometry. He was part of our 'Art Basel in Atlanta' show back in February and the idea just sort of came up. He wanted to do a solo show before he moved to Colorado and I jumped at the chance to host it. Sam's show will include originals as well as limited-edition Giclée prints that we are in the process of making for him."

That's one of many upcoming shows and workshops planned in the coming months. The studio hopes to offer classes such as wood-burning, watercolor, figure drawing, and others and bring in new artists to promote within the gallery space. There's also talk of bringing artists David "Bonethrower" Cook, Tara McPherson, and Allison Sommers into the space for different exhibitions.

"I can't promise anything, but I hope we can make something happen with them," Caviness says. "I will still curate and manage all of the shows and shop moving forward. It's been a total dream meeting so many talented and creative people. I'm really excited for everyone to see how we change the space and how we can be an even greater part of Atlanta's growing creative circle."

Editor's Note: This story has been modified to reflect updates on the grand re-opening and Sam Parker's show.             13083065 14293977                          Mindzai Creative moves to Little Five Points "
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Tuesday May 19, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Design shop and studio celebrates grand re-opening with artist Sam Parker's last Atlanta show | more...
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  string(3382) "    Digital agency turns wall into a visual arts canvas for staff and locals   2015-05-07T08:00:00+00:00 Huge ATL offers mural opportunities through its office space ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-05-07T08:00:00+00:00  Inspiring collaboration and creativity, Huge Atlanta has commissioned both its team members and outside artists to contribute a mural to the new giant dry-erase wall in its new office space. The full-service digital agency recently moved one floor up in its building on Peachtree Street as Huge's Art Director James Mabery and Product Designer Michael Zhong were looking for a way to collaborate together on a large scale.

"We waited forever to move upstairs and within two to three weeks, we put the mural on the wall," Mabery says. "Even before we started with this initiative, I was a huge fan of Michael's illustration work, so I've always wanted to collaborate with him. Initially, we had a wider range of ideas of what we wanted to do, but it came down to something Atlanta-related. Either doing something illustrated or little neighborhoods within Atlanta, like Little Five Points to Buckhead and Midtown. We landed on the Huge logo, the big letters, as a base for us to build around."

Their first collaborative mural was turned into a stop-motion video and shared with the office. Quickly after, Mabery and Zhong saw this as an opportunity to capitalize on their team's creativity and, later, contribute to the Atlanta arts community.

"Originally, it was really small scale as we just wanted to make some artwork together," Mabery says. "As we did that, people started to show interest within the office and that's when they decided to erase it. I thought, why don't we take this down every two to three weeks and allow other people in the office to do their own stuff on the wall and express themselves?"

It quickly grew into an office movement. Past murals have included developers drawing code and content strategists weaving a visual story around the company's logo.

With only one static element, the Huge logo, artists and employees alike get to create a mural around it using only dry-erase markers for visitors to enjoy over three weeks. There's no formal submission method as the team chooses who's next based on who shows interest or anything that catches their eye on Instagram.

"It's a great way for people to get to know Huge and we wanted to be more open with the community of Atlanta," Mabery says. "It's almost like a meet and greet."

The latest collaboration to go up was by Ismail Ahmad, a motion media major at Savannah College of Art and Design. His design included skull and heart elements particular to his cartoon-like style surrounding the Huge logo. Up next, the mural will see Huge visual designer Lindsay Appel take over the mural for a food-themed illustration. As far as dream collaborations, the team hopes to bring a graffiti artist on board, as well as more Georgia Tech industrial design students.

"It gives the contributor the confidence as a designer or illustrator, since every time you work on something that large, it forces you to think differently," Zhong says. "The second thing is that it gives them a platform to show off their artwork."             13082931 14188202                          Huge ATL offers mural opportunities through its office space "
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Thursday May 7, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Digital agency turns wall into a visual arts canvas for staff and locals | more...
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  string(4797) "Is love the basis of our humanity? It's a concept that humans have grappled with since the beginning of time, and one that will be brought to life in Old Fourth Ward on May 2, when celebrated artist Hebru Brantley brings his popular work "A Dedication" to life, using one of the most prominent outdoor canvases in Atlanta — a wall at the Sound Table.

Sponsored by Heineken and produced by AllWays Open (the collective behind Brantley's popular 2013 Atlanta show, Penny Candy, which drew more than 2,000 art enthusiasts to the Loews Hotel in Midtown), Brantley's mural, "A Dedication Two," is sure to foster a carnal response, as his work tends to do. The mural also comes just in time to mark the popular establishment's fifth anniversary.

"Hebru enjoys painting youthful characters and vibrant colors in his artwork, as well fantastical and positive imagery that encourages everyone to dream, make moves, unify and think, and we trust every viewer of this mural will take all of these mental benefits from it," says Dennis Malcolm Byron of AllWays Open, adding that the project is also supported by District 2 city councilman Kwanza Hall.

Using vibrant, fantastical images of children to catapult his sociopolitical messages by making them easily accessible, the message Brantley's imparting with this mural is all about the struggle to be loved — however that may be interpreted.

"With the location being in Old Fourth Ward and the rich historical context of that area, I wanted to create something that speaks to the idea of love," says Brantley, who graduated from Clark Atlanta University with a B.A. in film and sold his very first painting in 2002 to Atlanta's DJ Drama. "The idea can be interpreted as the love between a man and a woman or a relative, but it's really expressing the idea of love in relation to people of color, or the lack thereof in those neighborhoods."

Often propelled by his marquee creation, a character named "Flyboy," Brantley describes his work as pop-infused contemporary art, drawing direct influence from Japanese anime and the creations of street artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, who he discovered at 16 when his mother gave him a book of the artist's work. Deeming Basquiat a "rock star," Brantley's work is also visceral and engaging, invoking feelings of youthful optimism that's balanced with a thought-provoking narrative speaking to race, oppression, and opportunity.

Growing up in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood, Brantley was also influenced by murals from the Afro-Cobra movement, which popped up on the city's south side, and spent a lot of time in his youth finding trains and cars to tag with his work. But ultimately, it was his disappointment with the lack of black characters in popular culture that would propel his artistic inclinations and vision.

"There weren't any cool black comic characters," he remembers. "The characters that were there were created by white guys in a creative circle creating what they thought blacks were like. So I looked throughout history and gave the character a historical and cultural context."

With that in mind, Brantley's Flyboy is fashioned after the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of men he found both endlessly interesting and inspiring.

"The Tuskegee Airmen were fighters and they were given responsibility and power when black men weren't given much of anything. To me, that spoke volumes," he says. "So my interpretation of that is more youthful and whimsical. I don't necessarily even see my characters as kids — they mostly just represent this idea of innocence."

And therein lies the key to Brantley's brilliance. He's able to illustrate complex ideas in a way that resonates in their simplicity. The boldness of his works, the lucid colors, and the illustrative qualities that mingle with more daring concepts make Brantley's pieces relatable, regardless of cultural background, essentially inspiring viewers to tap into their inner kid.

"Adults are jaded," Brantley contends. "When you're a kid you believe you can do anything; you're still at the point where things are obtainable. Until I was 14, I believed that if I concentrated hard enough, I could levitate. I think that with the style that I use, the kids become approachable, no matter what the tone or context of the piece. And after you're pulled in, you may be able to see what the deeper meaning is of the work."

To date, Brantley's work has been exhibited throughout the U.S. as well as in London and at Switzerland's Art Basel, and he's collaborated with brands including Nike and Adidas. His work also hangs in the home of megastars like Jay-Z.

"I deal with so many different themes and ideas throughout different shows and works," Brantley says. "Overall, it's me expressing what and who I am through the art.""
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Sponsored by Heineken and produced by [https://www.facebook.com/AllwaysOpenCreative|AllWays Open] (the collective behind Brantley's popular 2013 Atlanta show, ''[http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2013/06/07/hebru-brantley-brings-penny-candy-to-peachtree-st|Penny Candy]'', which drew more than 2,000 art enthusiasts to the Loews Hotel in Midtown), Brantley's mural, "A Dedication Two," is sure to foster a carnal response, as his work tends to do. The mural also comes just in time to mark the popular establishment's fifth anniversary.

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Often propelled by his marquee creation, a character named "[http://www.complex.com/style/2014/02/hebru-brantley-drops-a-krylon-spraypaint-inspired-t-shirt|Flyboy]," Brantley describes his work as pop-infused contemporary art, drawing direct influence from Japanese anime and the creations of street artists such as [https://www.nytimes.com/books/first/h/hoban-basquiat.html|Jean-Michel Basquiat], who he discovered at 16 when his mother gave him a book of the artist's work. Deeming Basquiat a "rock star," Brantley's work is also visceral and engaging, invoking feelings of youthful optimism that's balanced with a thought-provoking narrative speaking to race, oppression, and opportunity.

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"Adults are jaded," Brantley contends. "When you're a kid you believe you can do anything; you're still at the point where things are obtainable. Until I was 14, I believed that if I concentrated hard enough, I could levitate. I think that with the style that I use, the kids become approachable, no matter what the tone or context of the piece. And after you're pulled in, you may be able to see what the deeper meaning is of the work."

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Sponsored by Heineken and produced by AllWays Open (the collective behind Brantley's popular 2013 Atlanta show, Penny Candy, which drew more than 2,000 art enthusiasts to the Loews Hotel in Midtown), Brantley's mural, "A Dedication Two," is sure to foster a carnal response, as his work tends to do. The mural also comes just in time to mark the popular establishment's fifth anniversary.

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Using vibrant, fantastical images of children to catapult his sociopolitical messages by making them easily accessible, the message Brantley's imparting with this mural is all about the struggle to be loved — however that may be interpreted.

"With the location being in Old Fourth Ward and the rich historical context of that area, I wanted to create something that speaks to the idea of love," says Brantley, who graduated from Clark Atlanta University with a B.A. in film and sold his very first painting in 2002 to Atlanta's DJ Drama. "The idea can be interpreted as the love between a man and a woman or a relative, but it's really expressing the idea of love in relation to people of color, or the lack thereof in those neighborhoods."

Often propelled by his marquee creation, a character named "Flyboy," Brantley describes his work as pop-infused contemporary art, drawing direct influence from Japanese anime and the creations of street artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, who he discovered at 16 when his mother gave him a book of the artist's work. Deeming Basquiat a "rock star," Brantley's work is also visceral and engaging, invoking feelings of youthful optimism that's balanced with a thought-provoking narrative speaking to race, oppression, and opportunity.

Growing up in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood, Brantley was also influenced by murals from the Afro-Cobra movement, which popped up on the city's south side, and spent a lot of time in his youth finding trains and cars to tag with his work. But ultimately, it was his disappointment with the lack of black characters in popular culture that would propel his artistic inclinations and vision.

"There weren't any cool black comic characters," he remembers. "The characters that were there were created by white guys in a creative circle creating what they thought blacks were like. So I looked throughout history and gave the character a historical and cultural context."

With that in mind, Brantley's Flyboy is fashioned after the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of men he found both endlessly interesting and inspiring.

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"Adults are jaded," Brantley contends. "When you're a kid you believe you can do anything; you're still at the point where things are obtainable. Until I was 14, I believed that if I concentrated hard enough, I could levitate. I think that with the style that I use, the kids become approachable, no matter what the tone or context of the piece. And after you're pulled in, you may be able to see what the deeper meaning is of the work."

To date, Brantley's work has been exhibited throughout the U.S. as well as in London and at Switzerland's Art Basel, and he's collaborated with brands including Nike and Adidas. His work also hangs in the home of megastars like Jay-Z.

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Thursday April 30, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Chicago artist's mural at the Sound Table to coincide with venue's anniversary | more...

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  string(3529) "In collaboration with choreographer T. Lang and Flux Projects, artist Nick Cave is bringing a two-part performance with dancers, actors, and musicians to the not-yet-opened central food hall at Ponce City Market.

Cave is the professor and chairman of the fashion department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, best known for his multidisciplinary work that often includes sculpture, video, and performance — sometimes all at once. His public collections live at several major museums across the country, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He'll incorporate his famous SoundSuits, sculptural forms that are based on the scale of his body.

Cave spoke to Creative Loafing about working with Flux Projects at Ponce City Market, giving back through his performance, and Atlanta's own urban renewal.

How was it working with this concept at such a new space as Ponce City Market?

The piece is about the "Initiates," self-preservation, and being reborn into a new world, as well as looking at how we can come in and provide an admission to a better existence. We've been to Atlanta about four times, scouting spaces, and we decided on Ponce City Market. We were really interested in that location. We have yet to see the set for the performance piece, but that's been designed. We are interested in what that feels like, looks like, and how it all comes together.

How about the SoundSuit-costumes worn by the performers? How did that come together?

When we are working with a body of sculptures, we have to take into account a different way of building the suits. We have to take into account the wear and tear and what kind of materials can handle the level of stress. And weight comes into play.

The costumes are still in line with my past work. In here, we'll be working with a lot of found objects, synthetic hair, raffia, and that's about it. I'm collaborating with T. Lang, who works at the Spelman College dance department, and she will be choreographing the opening piece for the performance. The second part is a new piece that I've developed.

The performance includes seven individuals from the community whom we will be undressing and redressing. They will be literally building this sort of apparatus/attire sort of sculpture, so as the viewer you will be seeing this process as it occurs. Then the individuals will rise and walk into the world. It's preparing the mind, body, and spirit to face the forces that get in the way of selfhood. It's really about this sort of rite of passage to a degree.

Tell me about collaborating with T. Lang and selecting the dancers.

We were in Atlanta and looking around to see who we wanted to collaborate with. We started scouting for dancers and musicians. We visited Spelman since we wanted to connect with an academic sort of setting. Up Right is about what has prepared me for who I am today, individuals who have come into my life, brought attention to my abilities and ... conditioned me and handed me to the next person. I've always been in training, and this is my way of giving back to those individuals who need a jump-start and make them feel like they matter.

This concept seems to relate back to Atlanta being reborn, both in the last few years and since the burning of the city, right?

I think so. I think it's about a renewal, and in order for Atlanta to rebuild itself the people need to be renewed. It's about regurgitation, looking at the past yet looking at what's present, and how do we look at the future."
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  string(3741) "In collaboration with choreographer [http://tlangdance.com/|T. Lang] and Flux Projects, artist [http://www.jackshainman.com/artists/nick-cave/|Nick Cave] is bringing a two-part performance with dancers, actors, and musicians to the not-yet-opened central food hall at [http://clatl.com/atlanta/Location?oid=3811618&guide=city|Ponce City Market].

Cave is the professor and chairman of the fashion department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, best known for his multidisciplinary work that often includes sculpture, video, and performance — sometimes all at once. His public collections live at several major museums across the country, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He'll incorporate his famous SoundSuits, sculptural forms that are based on the scale of his body.

Cave spoke to ''Creative Loafing'' about working with Flux Projects at Ponce City Market, giving back through his performance, and Atlanta's own urban renewal.

__How was it working with this concept at such a new space as Ponce City Market?__

The piece is about the "Initiates," self-preservation, and being reborn into a new world, as well as looking at how we can come in and provide an admission to a better existence. We've been to Atlanta about four times, scouting spaces, and we decided on Ponce City Market. We were really interested in that location. We have yet to see the set for the performance piece, but that's been designed. We are interested in what that feels like, looks like, and how it all comes together.

__How about the SoundSuit-costumes worn by the [[performers]? How did that come together?__

When [[we] are working with a body of sculptures, we have to take into account a different way of building the suits. We have to take into account the wear and tear [and] what kind of materials can handle the level of stress. And weight comes into play.

The costumes are still in line with my past work. In here, we'll be working with a lot of found objects, synthetic hair, raffia, and that's about it. I'm collaborating with T. Lang, who works at the Spelman College dance department, and she will be choreographing the opening piece for the performance. The second part is a new piece that I've developed.

[[The performance includes] seven individuals from the community [[whom] we will be undressing and redressing. They will be literally building this sort of apparatus/attire sort of sculpture, so as the viewer you will be seeing this process as it occurs. Then the individuals will rise and walk into the world. It's preparing the mind, body, and spirit to face the forces that get in the way of selfhood. It's really about this sort of rite of passage to a degree.

__Tell me about collaborating with T. Lang and selecting the dancers.__

We were in Atlanta and looking around to see who we wanted to collaborate with. We started scouting for dancers and musicians. We visited Spelman since we wanted to connect with an academic sort of setting. ''[http://www.fluxprojects.org/upright|Up Right]'' is about what has prepared me for who I am today, individuals who have come into my life, brought attention to my abilities and ... conditioned me and handed me to the next person. I've always been in training, and this is my way of giving back to those individuals who need a jump-start and make them feel like they matter.

__This concept seems to relate back to Atlanta being reborn, both in the last few years and since the burning [[of the] city, right?__

I think so. I think it's about a renewal, and in order for Atlanta to rebuild itself the people need to be renewed. It's about regurgitation, looking at the past yet looking at what's present, and how do we look at the future."
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  string(3907) "    Artist Nick Cave, choreographer T. Lang, and Flux Projects collaborate in the Old Fourth Ward space   2015-04-21T08:00:00+00:00 "Up Right: Atlanta" makes art of Ponce City Market ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-04-21T08:00:00+00:00  In collaboration with choreographer T. Lang and Flux Projects, artist Nick Cave is bringing a two-part performance with dancers, actors, and musicians to the not-yet-opened central food hall at Ponce City Market.

Cave is the professor and chairman of the fashion department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, best known for his multidisciplinary work that often includes sculpture, video, and performance — sometimes all at once. His public collections live at several major museums across the country, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He'll incorporate his famous SoundSuits, sculptural forms that are based on the scale of his body.

Cave spoke to Creative Loafing about working with Flux Projects at Ponce City Market, giving back through his performance, and Atlanta's own urban renewal.

How was it working with this concept at such a new space as Ponce City Market?

The piece is about the "Initiates," self-preservation, and being reborn into a new world, as well as looking at how we can come in and provide an admission to a better existence. We've been to Atlanta about four times, scouting spaces, and we decided on Ponce City Market. We were really interested in that location. We have yet to see the set for the performance piece, but that's been designed. We are interested in what that feels like, looks like, and how it all comes together.

How about the SoundSuit-costumes worn by the performers? How did that come together?

When we are working with a body of sculptures, we have to take into account a different way of building the suits. We have to take into account the wear and tear and what kind of materials can handle the level of stress. And weight comes into play.

The costumes are still in line with my past work. In here, we'll be working with a lot of found objects, synthetic hair, raffia, and that's about it. I'm collaborating with T. Lang, who works at the Spelman College dance department, and she will be choreographing the opening piece for the performance. The second part is a new piece that I've developed.

The performance includes seven individuals from the community whom we will be undressing and redressing. They will be literally building this sort of apparatus/attire sort of sculpture, so as the viewer you will be seeing this process as it occurs. Then the individuals will rise and walk into the world. It's preparing the mind, body, and spirit to face the forces that get in the way of selfhood. It's really about this sort of rite of passage to a degree.

Tell me about collaborating with T. Lang and selecting the dancers.

We were in Atlanta and looking around to see who we wanted to collaborate with. We started scouting for dancers and musicians. We visited Spelman since we wanted to connect with an academic sort of setting. Up Right is about what has prepared me for who I am today, individuals who have come into my life, brought attention to my abilities and ... conditioned me and handed me to the next person. I've always been in training, and this is my way of giving back to those individuals who need a jump-start and make them feel like they matter.

This concept seems to relate back to Atlanta being reborn, both in the last few years and since the burning of the city, right?

I think so. I think it's about a renewal, and in order for Atlanta to rebuild itself the people need to be renewed. It's about regurgitation, looking at the past yet looking at what's present, and how do we look at the future.             13082764 14065543                          "Up Right: Atlanta" makes art of Ponce City Market "
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Article

Tuesday April 21, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist Nick Cave, choreographer T. Lang, and Flux Projects collaborate in the Old Fourth Ward space | more...
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  string(73) "Two painters reflect on Wifredo Lam's influence in 'Imagining New Worlds'"
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  string(6401) "Fahamu Pecou and José Parlá had never met before collaborating for the High Museum of Art's current Wifredo Lam retrospective, Imagining New Worlds. But it didn't take long for them to find common ground — and discover they had common friends in the art world. "It felt like we'd known each other forever," Pecou says. While Atlanta-based Pecou has used self-portraiture to explore the fractured state of black male identity, Brooklyn-based Parlá focuses on the cultural upheaval of urban landscapes through his sculptural paintings. In conversation, they talked about their individual and collective response to the legacy of Lam, a Cuban-born, multiracial artist whose career spanned cultures while encompassing the breadth of the 20th century's artistic sweep — from realism to surrealism on down to postmodernism.

Wifredo Lam was heavily influenced by political goings-on in the world around him. How do you all see your work as a direct reflection of the current times?

José Parlá: Fahamu and I are probably in a position as young men that is probably incomparable to the struggles that people were having in the '40s, '50s, and '60s. There are still struggles, but the landscape is so different. That being said, in my work the kind of struggle that I project onto the paintings deals with a certain political state of mind that comes from the position of class, and I see some correlation to that in Lam's work, and also in Fahamu's work, dealing with class but also with race.

Fahamu Pecou: And my particular work is an ongoing look at the politics of identity. Thinking about notions of blackness, what it means to be black, and black masculinity — all of these different kinds of intersections around identity are really what I'm thinking about. Lam's work, as well, was also dealing with ideas around identity and blackness.

How did considering the evolution of Lam's work challenge you both to think about your own artistic growth or ways to expand upon your own palette?

FP: One of the things that really resonated in Lam's work is the way he syncretizes different movements. You see all of these different elements come together in his work and I really appreciate that. It's kind of like sampling. He's taking these different pieces and putting them together to create these new compositions and these new perspectives. This is, again, kind of the way that I began to approach my work. One of the things that I've been thinking about for a long time but haven't quite figured out how to bring into my work is my own relationship with Yoruba spirituality. I've kind of been masking it in some of my work in the past, but this exhibition allowed me to be a little bit more forthcoming with it and to deal with some of the notions of Orisha in Yoruba cosmology more directly. So that was really kind of liberating in a lot of ways. It gave me an ability to talk about that and to talk about how it connects to larger issues around blackness and how it has parallels to hip-hop and Negritude.

JP: When I started thinking about this project, I was working on a project called Segmented Realities at the same time and it made me think of how surrealism comes from the idea of heightened reality and dreams. I've always been interested in looking at cities in a way where I study the cities by studying the surfaces of walls. So I decided to do 10 sculptures that reflect different places that I've traveled to or lived in and documented. Each of these sculptural paintings that are presented as walls in the exhibition reflect a kind of heightened reality of a place. It is a work made-up to feel like a document from memory and it is built to look like a realistic wall. But the idea is always present that it's not real, that it is a piece of art, that it allows the imagination to conjure up this world. That was the connection that I found with Imagining New Worlds and the project with looking at Wifredo Lam, not only as a painter that I admire but also as someone who lived a migratory life.

A big thread in Lam's life and career was the influence of his peers. You see his work evolve as he comes into contact with other artists and schools of thought. How do you all think this collaboration might influence you individually, and what do you foresee yourselves taking away from this as a result of having worked together?

FP: On a professional level, being able to work with José has given me insight into some potential as far as being a practicing artist. Some of the accomplishments José has had are really amazing. I joke around with him that going to his studio in New York felt like when Martin Lawrence said he went to Eddie Murphy's house for the first time. Martin walked in and just turned into a little girl, like, "Wow, this is real nice, Eddie." Being able to see someone who is my contemporary, and to see what commitment and diligence to one's craft can yield has been really inspiring for me. I think this is the first major museum exhibition for both of us, and to be able to share that experience has been nothing short of amazing.

JP: Thank you, Fahamu. I look up to you, man. And I think everything that you're doing and everything that you've achieved on your own, too, is tremendous. Collaborating in the museum was also a really great way to understand each other and also to sort of put together some ideas that weren't just planned as we expected. We were able to communicate and figure out how to move things forward, and you always take away something from that. That kind of experience always resonates in future projects because you know you've been there before and you learn how to do new things.

FP: As you can hear, the bromance is real. But I also have a great deal of respect for Jose's entire aesthetic. I've learned a lot about his particular form of painting and the way he approaches the canvas or a wall or a surface. I think it was a mutual exchange in terms of just process, especially working together on the collaborative altar space. As he was saying we had a rough idea of what we wanted to do, but it would have been very difficult for us to articulate that prior to going into the room and putting paint on the wall. It really evolved. And I think there was also a lot of unspoken communication between the two of us. It just built from there.

This interview has been edited and condensed."
  ["tracker_field_contentWikiPage_raw"]=>
  string(6857) "[http://www.fahamupecouart.com/|Fahamu Pecou] and [http://www.joseparla.com/|José Parlá] had never met before collaborating for the High Museum of Art's current [http://www.wifredolam.net/en|Wifredo Lam] retrospective, ''[http://www.high.org/Art/Exhibitions/Imagining-New-Worlds.aspx|Imagining New Worlds]''. But it didn't take long for them to find common ground — and discover they had common friends in the art world. "It felt like we'd known each other forever," Pecou says. While Atlanta-based Pecou has used self-portraiture to explore the fractured state of black male identity, Brooklyn-based Parlá focuses on the cultural upheaval of urban landscapes through his sculptural paintings. In conversation, they talked about their individual and collective response to the legacy of Lam, a Cuban-born, multiracial artist whose career spanned cultures while encompassing the breadth of the 20th century's artistic sweep — from realism to surrealism on down to postmodernism.

__Wifredo Lam was heavily influenced by political goings-on in the world around him. How do you all see your work as a direct reflection of the current times?__

__José Parlá:__ Fahamu and I are probably in a position as young men that is probably incomparable to the struggles that people were having in the '40s, '50s, and '60s. There are still struggles, but the landscape is so different. That being said, in my work the kind of struggle that I project onto the paintings deals with a certain political state of mind that comes from the position of class, and I see some correlation to that in Lam's work, and also in Fahamu's work, dealing with class but also with race.

__Fahamu Pecou:__ And my particular work is an ongoing look at the politics of identity. Thinking about notions of blackness, what it means to be black, and black masculinity — all of these different kinds of intersections around identity are really what I'm thinking about. Lam's work, as well, was also dealing with ideas around identity and blackness.

__How did considering the evolution of Lam's work challenge you both to think about your own artistic growth or ways to expand upon your own palette?__

__FP:__ One of the things that really resonated in Lam's work is the way he syncretizes different movements. You see all of these different elements come together in his work and I really appreciate that. It's kind of like sampling. He's taking these different pieces and putting them together to create these new compositions and these new perspectives. This is, again, kind of the way that I began to approach my work. One of the things that I've been thinking about for a long time but haven't quite figured out how to bring into my work is my own relationship with Yoruba spirituality. I've kind of been masking it in some of my work in the past, but this exhibition allowed me to be a little bit more forthcoming with it and [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2015/04/01/fahamu-pecou-on-embracing-yoruba-in-the-messenger|to deal with some of the notions of Orisha in Yoruba cosmology] more directly. So that was really kind of liberating in a lot of ways. It gave me an ability to talk about that and to talk about how it connects to larger issues around blackness [and] how it has parallels to hip-hop and [http://www.poets.org/poetsorg/text/brief-guide-negritude|Negritude].

__JP:__ When I started thinking about this project, I was working on a project called ''[https://www.high.org/Art/Exhibitions/Jose-Parla-Segmented-Realities.aspx|Segmented Realities]'' at the same time and it made me think of how surrealism comes from the idea of heightened reality and dreams. I've always been interested in looking at cities in a way where I study the cities by studying the surfaces of walls. So I decided to do 10 sculptures that reflect different places that I've traveled to or lived in and documented. Each of these sculptural paintings that are presented as walls in the exhibition reflect a kind of heightened reality of a place. It is a work made-up to feel like a document from memory and it is built to look like a realistic wall. But the idea is always present that it's not real, that it is a piece of art, that it allows the imagination to conjure up this world. That was the connection that I found with ''Imagining New Worlds'' and the project with looking at Wifredo Lam, not only as a painter that I admire but also as someone who lived a migratory life.

__A big thread in Lam's life and career was the influence of his peers. You see his work evolve as he comes into contact with other artists and schools of thought. How do you all think this collaboration might influence you individually, and what do you foresee yourselves taking away from this as a result of having worked together?__

__FP:__ On a professional level, being able to work with José has given me insight into some potential as far as being a practicing artist. Some of the accomplishments José has had are really amazing. I joke around with him [[that] going to his studio in New York felt like when Martin [[Lawrence said he] went to Eddie Murphy's house for the first time. [[Martin] walked in and just turned into a little girl, like, "Wow, this is real nice, Eddie." Being able to see someone who is my contemporary, and to see what commitment and diligence to one's craft can yield has been really inspiring for me. I think this is the first major museum exhibition for both of us, and to be able to share that experience has been nothing short of amazing.

__JP:__ Thank you, Fahamu. I look up to you, man. And I think everything that you're doing and everything that you've achieved on your own, too, is tremendous. Collaborating in the museum was also a really great way to understand each other and also to sort of put together some ideas that weren't just planned as we expected. We were able to communicate and figure out how to move things forward, and you always take away something from that. That kind of experience always resonates in future projects because you know you've been there before and you learn how to do new things.

__FP:__ As you can hear, the bromance is real. But I also have a great deal of respect for Jose's entire aesthetic. I've learned a lot about his particular form of painting and the way he approaches the canvas or a wall or a surface. I think it was a mutual exchange in terms of just process, especially working together on the collaborative altar space. As he was saying we had a rough idea of what we wanted to do, but it would have been very difficult for us to articulate that prior to going into the room and putting paint on the wall. It really evolved. And I think there was also a lot of unspoken communication between the two of us. It just built from there.

''This interview has been edited and condensed.''"
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  string(6758) "    Two painters reflect on Wifredo Lam's influence in 'Imagining New Worlds'   2015-04-16T08:00:00+00:00 Fahamu Pecou and Jose Parla in a parallel universe ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Rodney Carmichael 1224193 2015-04-16T08:00:00+00:00  Fahamu Pecou and José Parlá had never met before collaborating for the High Museum of Art's current Wifredo Lam retrospective, Imagining New Worlds. But it didn't take long for them to find common ground — and discover they had common friends in the art world. "It felt like we'd known each other forever," Pecou says. While Atlanta-based Pecou has used self-portraiture to explore the fractured state of black male identity, Brooklyn-based Parlá focuses on the cultural upheaval of urban landscapes through his sculptural paintings. In conversation, they talked about their individual and collective response to the legacy of Lam, a Cuban-born, multiracial artist whose career spanned cultures while encompassing the breadth of the 20th century's artistic sweep — from realism to surrealism on down to postmodernism.

Wifredo Lam was heavily influenced by political goings-on in the world around him. How do you all see your work as a direct reflection of the current times?

José Parlá: Fahamu and I are probably in a position as young men that is probably incomparable to the struggles that people were having in the '40s, '50s, and '60s. There are still struggles, but the landscape is so different. That being said, in my work the kind of struggle that I project onto the paintings deals with a certain political state of mind that comes from the position of class, and I see some correlation to that in Lam's work, and also in Fahamu's work, dealing with class but also with race.

Fahamu Pecou: And my particular work is an ongoing look at the politics of identity. Thinking about notions of blackness, what it means to be black, and black masculinity — all of these different kinds of intersections around identity are really what I'm thinking about. Lam's work, as well, was also dealing with ideas around identity and blackness.

How did considering the evolution of Lam's work challenge you both to think about your own artistic growth or ways to expand upon your own palette?

FP: One of the things that really resonated in Lam's work is the way he syncretizes different movements. You see all of these different elements come together in his work and I really appreciate that. It's kind of like sampling. He's taking these different pieces and putting them together to create these new compositions and these new perspectives. This is, again, kind of the way that I began to approach my work. One of the things that I've been thinking about for a long time but haven't quite figured out how to bring into my work is my own relationship with Yoruba spirituality. I've kind of been masking it in some of my work in the past, but this exhibition allowed me to be a little bit more forthcoming with it and to deal with some of the notions of Orisha in Yoruba cosmology more directly. So that was really kind of liberating in a lot of ways. It gave me an ability to talk about that and to talk about how it connects to larger issues around blackness and how it has parallels to hip-hop and Negritude.

JP: When I started thinking about this project, I was working on a project called Segmented Realities at the same time and it made me think of how surrealism comes from the idea of heightened reality and dreams. I've always been interested in looking at cities in a way where I study the cities by studying the surfaces of walls. So I decided to do 10 sculptures that reflect different places that I've traveled to or lived in and documented. Each of these sculptural paintings that are presented as walls in the exhibition reflect a kind of heightened reality of a place. It is a work made-up to feel like a document from memory and it is built to look like a realistic wall. But the idea is always present that it's not real, that it is a piece of art, that it allows the imagination to conjure up this world. That was the connection that I found with Imagining New Worlds and the project with looking at Wifredo Lam, not only as a painter that I admire but also as someone who lived a migratory life.

A big thread in Lam's life and career was the influence of his peers. You see his work evolve as he comes into contact with other artists and schools of thought. How do you all think this collaboration might influence you individually, and what do you foresee yourselves taking away from this as a result of having worked together?

FP: On a professional level, being able to work with José has given me insight into some potential as far as being a practicing artist. Some of the accomplishments José has had are really amazing. I joke around with him that going to his studio in New York felt like when Martin Lawrence said he went to Eddie Murphy's house for the first time. Martin walked in and just turned into a little girl, like, "Wow, this is real nice, Eddie." Being able to see someone who is my contemporary, and to see what commitment and diligence to one's craft can yield has been really inspiring for me. I think this is the first major museum exhibition for both of us, and to be able to share that experience has been nothing short of amazing.

JP: Thank you, Fahamu. I look up to you, man. And I think everything that you're doing and everything that you've achieved on your own, too, is tremendous. Collaborating in the museum was also a really great way to understand each other and also to sort of put together some ideas that weren't just planned as we expected. We were able to communicate and figure out how to move things forward, and you always take away something from that. That kind of experience always resonates in future projects because you know you've been there before and you learn how to do new things.

FP: As you can hear, the bromance is real. But I also have a great deal of respect for Jose's entire aesthetic. I've learned a lot about his particular form of painting and the way he approaches the canvas or a wall or a surface. I think it was a mutual exchange in terms of just process, especially working together on the collaborative altar space. As he was saying we had a rough idea of what we wanted to do, but it would have been very difficult for us to articulate that prior to going into the room and putting paint on the wall. It really evolved. And I think there was also a lot of unspoken communication between the two of us. It just built from there.

This interview has been edited and condensed.             13082554 13994456                          Fahamu Pecou and Jose Parla in a parallel universe "
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Thursday April 16, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Two painters reflect on Wifredo Lam's influence in 'Imagining New Worlds' | more...
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  string(4316) "Jason Shelowitz, known to the art world as Jay Shells, was sitting around one night, listening to slain Harlem rapper Big L, when he caught the feeling. He had a thought so grand in its simplicity that it would eventually take him around the country, with calls to travel the world.

The idea? Street signs with hip-hop lyrics printed on them, hung strategically in the places mentioned in the rhymes. For a culture that's hyperaware of location, 'hoods, and hangouts, and whose artists often validate themselves by shouting out their cities (see: Drake and his inexplicable thirst for people to call Toronto "the 6"), it's not surprising that Shells' idea has generated loads of attention and acclaim everywhere that he's touched down.

"The idea was to make the signs look like standard municipal street signs, so that they blend into the landscape," the New York City native explains. "If I wanted them to stand out I would have made them a wild color, but I didn't want them to be overly designed."

Part of the reasoning for that is because when Shells is actively hanging the signs in various locations across the cities he visits, it doesn't draw much attention. But once they are noticed — which typically comes after Shells has posted his work on social media — the signs are gone in a couple of hours, if that. After all, what hip-hop enthusiast wouldn't want a sign that read, "Back in Philly we be out in the park/a place called the Plateau is where everybody go ..." and that actually came from Belmont Plateau in Fairmount Park hanging in the crib?

With that in mind, Shells doesn't exactly refer to what he's doing as regular "street art," since unlike graffiti for example, he says his work is removed rather quickly and he's not really vandalizing property. Instead, this project is his contribution to the culture he loves, propelled by the art and design skills he honed throughout the years.

Starting off in New York in March 2013, Shells, who has had art exhibitions all over the world for his work prior to beginning this project, has hung more than 75 signs all over the city. It's an arduous task that he says typically takes two full days to accomplish in any given town. So far, rappers including Busta Rhymes, Action Bronson, Kanye West, GZA, Slick Rick, and Black Thought have had their lyrics immortalized on Shells' signs.

He currently has 75 custom-designed signs in Los Angeles, where last year he did an exhibition to fund his travels, and another 22 signs in Philadelphia. This month, he's headed to Atlanta, commissioned by the producers of the A3C Hip Hop Festival. So don't be too upset if you miss "the start of somethin' good" on Headland and Delowe; maybe, as Cool Breeze says on Goodie Mob's "The Damm," the next stop is "gonna be Greenbriar Mall."

"These are significant places," explains Shells, who also works in paint, acrylic, and, more recently, pyrography. "Everywhere on earth is significant for someone, but the fact that an artist wrote a lyric to mention a place makes it significant not just for that person, but for people in that area, and I think that deserves recognition."

Shells says he's disappointed with the overall limiting of hip-hop's cultural relevance in a mainstream platform. While he's happy to see that Adam Yauch (aka MCA of the Beastie Boys) has a park named after him in Brooklyn, he points out that the petition to have a street in New York named for the Notorious B.I.G. has been met with negativity.

"Hip-hop is a huge cultural phenomenon — it's one of the biggest cultures on earth. It's also one of the most exploited and underappreciated," he says. "So I'm commemorating these emcees in my own way."

After Atlanta, Shells is heading to Houston, Chicago, and the Bay Area, saying that he needs at least 20 lyrical mentions to go to a new city. And as for the rhymes that he features on his signs, he isn't picky, the lyrics just have to mention a specific place — so no "ridin' dirty on 85, slow takin' it easy" looking for Shells' signage because you won't find it there.

At day's end, Shell is just about leaving an impression on people who appreciate good hip-hop and its cultural impact.

"People have been collecting regular street signs for decades," he says. "So I'm just leaving something out there for somebody.""
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The idea? [http://www.jayshells.com/#/therapquotes/|Street signs with hip-hop lyrics printed on them], hung strategically in the places mentioned in the rhymes. For a culture that's hyperaware of location, 'hoods, and hangouts, and whose artists often validate themselves by shouting out their cities (see: Drake and his [http://www.buzzfeed.com/tanyachen/trying-make-the-6-happen#.kpRxgJXvYY|inexplicable thirst for people to call Toronto "the 6"]), it's not surprising that Shells' idea has generated loads of attention and acclaim everywhere that he's touched down.

"The idea was to make the signs look like standard municipal street signs, so that they blend into the landscape," the New York City native explains. "If I wanted them to stand out I would have made them a wild color, but I didn't want them to be overly designed."

Part of the reasoning for that is because when Shells is actively hanging the signs in various locations across the cities he visits, it doesn't draw much attention. But once they are noticed — which typically comes after Shells has posted his work on social media — the signs are gone in a couple of hours, if that. After all, what hip-hop enthusiast wouldn't want a sign that read, "[http://www.vevo.com/watch/dj-jazzy-jeff-and-the-fresh-prince/Summertime/USZM20500037|Back in Philly we be out in the park/a place called the Plateau is where everybody go ...]" and that actually came from [http://www.yelp.com/biz/belmont-plateau-philadelphia|Belmont Plateau] in Fairmount Park hanging in the crib?

With that in mind, Shells doesn't exactly refer to what he's doing as regular "street art," since unlike graffiti for example, he says his work is removed rather quickly and he's not really vandalizing property. Instead, this project is his contribution to the culture he loves, propelled by the art and design skills he honed throughout the years.

Starting off in New York in March 2013, Shells, who has had art exhibitions all over the world for his work prior to beginning this project, has hung more than 75 signs all over the city. It's an arduous task that he says typically takes two full days to accomplish in any given town. So far, rappers including Busta Rhymes, Action Bronson, Kanye West, GZA, Slick Rick, and Black Thought have had their lyrics immortalized on Shells' signs.

He currently has 75 custom-designed signs in Los Angeles, where last year he did an exhibition to fund his travels, and another 22 signs in Philadelphia. This month, he's headed to Atlanta, commissioned by the producers of the A3C Hip Hop Festival. So don't be too upset if you miss "[http://clatl.com/atlanta/headland-and-delowe/Content?oid=10899830|the start of somethin' good]" on Headland and Delowe; maybe, as Cool Breeze says on Goodie Mob's "[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_p42244ZIAk|The Damm]," the next stop is "gonna be Greenbriar Mall."

"These are significant places," explains Shells, who also works in paint, acrylic, and, more recently, [http://www.instructables.com/id/Pyrography-or-How-to-Wood-Burn-Art/|pyrography]. "Everywhere on earth is significant for someone, but the fact that an artist wrote a lyric to mention a place makes it significant not just for that person, but for people in that area, and I think that deserves recognition."

Shells says he's disappointed with the overall limiting of hip-hop's cultural relevance in a mainstream platform. While he's happy to see that Adam Yauch (aka MCA of the Beastie Boys) has [http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/adam-yauch-park-dedicated-in-brooklyn-20130503|a park named after him] in Brooklyn, he points out that the [http://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/oct/18/notorious-big-brooklyn-street-dedication|petition to have a street in New York named for the Notorious B.I.G.] has been met with negativity.

"Hip-hop is a huge cultural phenomenon — it's one of the biggest cultures on earth. It's also one of the most exploited and underappreciated," he says. "So I'm commemorating these emcees in my own way."

After Atlanta, Shells is heading to Houston, Chicago, and the Bay Area, saying that he needs at least 20 lyrical mentions to go to a new city. And as for the rhymes that he features on his signs, he isn't picky, the lyrics just have to mention a specific place — so no "[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6E0oGIWpiGs|ridin' dirty on 85, slow takin' it easy]" looking for Shells' signage because you won't find it there.

At day's end, Shell is just about leaving an impression on people who appreciate good hip-hop and its cultural impact.

"People have been collecting regular street signs for decades," he says. "So I'm just leaving something out there for somebody.""
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The idea? Street signs with hip-hop lyrics printed on them, hung strategically in the places mentioned in the rhymes. For a culture that's hyperaware of location, 'hoods, and hangouts, and whose artists often validate themselves by shouting out their cities (see: Drake and his inexplicable thirst for people to call Toronto "the 6"), it's not surprising that Shells' idea has generated loads of attention and acclaim everywhere that he's touched down.

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Part of the reasoning for that is because when Shells is actively hanging the signs in various locations across the cities he visits, it doesn't draw much attention. But once they are noticed — which typically comes after Shells has posted his work on social media — the signs are gone in a couple of hours, if that. After all, what hip-hop enthusiast wouldn't want a sign that read, "Back in Philly we be out in the park/a place called the Plateau is where everybody go ..." and that actually came from Belmont Plateau in Fairmount Park hanging in the crib?

With that in mind, Shells doesn't exactly refer to what he's doing as regular "street art," since unlike graffiti for example, he says his work is removed rather quickly and he's not really vandalizing property. Instead, this project is his contribution to the culture he loves, propelled by the art and design skills he honed throughout the years.

Starting off in New York in March 2013, Shells, who has had art exhibitions all over the world for his work prior to beginning this project, has hung more than 75 signs all over the city. It's an arduous task that he says typically takes two full days to accomplish in any given town. So far, rappers including Busta Rhymes, Action Bronson, Kanye West, GZA, Slick Rick, and Black Thought have had their lyrics immortalized on Shells' signs.

He currently has 75 custom-designed signs in Los Angeles, where last year he did an exhibition to fund his travels, and another 22 signs in Philadelphia. This month, he's headed to Atlanta, commissioned by the producers of the A3C Hip Hop Festival. So don't be too upset if you miss "the start of somethin' good" on Headland and Delowe; maybe, as Cool Breeze says on Goodie Mob's "The Damm," the next stop is "gonna be Greenbriar Mall."

"These are significant places," explains Shells, who also works in paint, acrylic, and, more recently, pyrography. "Everywhere on earth is significant for someone, but the fact that an artist wrote a lyric to mention a place makes it significant not just for that person, but for people in that area, and I think that deserves recognition."

Shells says he's disappointed with the overall limiting of hip-hop's cultural relevance in a mainstream platform. While he's happy to see that Adam Yauch (aka MCA of the Beastie Boys) has a park named after him in Brooklyn, he points out that the petition to have a street in New York named for the Notorious B.I.G. has been met with negativity.

"Hip-hop is a huge cultural phenomenon — it's one of the biggest cultures on earth. It's also one of the most exploited and underappreciated," he says. "So I'm commemorating these emcees in my own way."

After Atlanta, Shells is heading to Houston, Chicago, and the Bay Area, saying that he needs at least 20 lyrical mentions to go to a new city. And as for the rhymes that he features on his signs, he isn't picky, the lyrics just have to mention a specific place — so no "ridin' dirty on 85, slow takin' it easy" looking for Shells' signage because you won't find it there.

At day's end, Shell is just about leaving an impression on people who appreciate good hip-hop and its cultural impact.

"People have been collecting regular street signs for decades," he says. "So I'm just leaving something out there for somebody."             13082652 14018683                          Jay Shells brings Rap Quotes to Atlanta "
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Tuesday April 14, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist to celebrate the city's hip-hop culture with popular site-specific installations | more...
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  string(5143) "It's an interesting time in America — unique even. Political and social unrest are fueling a frenzy for all things pop culture. Social media has undeniably shaped a culture of activism while also cultivating an environment for bullying. The country is as culturally diverse as it's ever been but nevertheless finds itself struggling very publicly with embracing change. It's an environment ripe for great art, and veteran Atlanta-based artist and designer DL Warfield is up for the task.

In fact, Warfield's latest project, The American Flag Remixed, is a projection of ever-evolving American cultural identity, expertly capturing the nuances that make up the current condition of the United States.

"The process initially came from a conversation with one of my mentors," the St. Louis native recalls. "We were talking about people's infatuation with becoming famous and everybody's thirst to be a celebrity. I was telling him we don't live in the United States of America; we live in the United States of Entertainment. I was like, damn, I should make a flag about that."

So he did. The first remixed flag he created was "The United States of Rock and Roll" — he made it out of Levi denim, leather, and studs, and it reads, "rock or die." Warfield posted the art on social media, and a former Levi Strauss executive wanted it immediately. "I thought, I might be on to something," says Warfield, who has called Atlanta home since 1995.

That may be an understatement. In fact, his latest project appears to be his magnum opus, and the most defining project to date in a long career that's been full of highlights. Since graduating with a BFA in painting from Washington University in St. Louis, Warfield has found success in both the art and corporate worlds as an artist with bold design inclinations, and as a creative curator with an innovative eye for branding.

Warfield's work, which he calls "Hop Art" because his love of hip-hop and urban culture operate in tandem with his fine art background, has been displayed all over the country, including at Miami's Art Basel and the Time-Life Building in New York. Through his boutique creative agency, Goldfinger c.s., he's also curated design projects for Ford, Nike, and Hennessy, and he's overseen branding and creative concepts for record companies including LaFace (he has art in L.A. Reid and Usher's homes), Def Jam, Universal Music Group, and Motown. To date, Warfield's work is tied to more than $700 million in record sales. In fact, it was Warfield who was responsible for the creative branding of OutKast's quadruple-platinum album, Stankonia, which, ironically, pictured the duo in front of a black-and-white American flag, though Warfield says, in that case, the flag was Andre 3000's idea.

Much like his career, the diversity of Warfield's flags appeals to corporate and hip-hop culture, to people who openly criticize America and its contradictions, and to people who embrace those inconsistencies with rose-tinged glasses. Using mixed media because it not only allows him to create faster, but also because it frees him creatively, Warfield embraces the varied interpretations of his flags. In fact, he thrives on it, because that diversity, much like the America that inspires him, is what makes it work.

"I guess what I've learned is people have different levels of patriotism," he says. "There are some people who, although they like living in America, may not be that comfortable waving an American flag. But when I remix it, based on what people have said, I add a level of coolness to it."

Grammy-winning rapper T.I. has purchased two of Warfield's flags, "The United States of Mi' Familia," which is based on Warfield's own culturally diverse family since he's African-American and his wife is Italian-American, and "The United States of Boom," which features the flag superimposed over a boom box, a work that practically pops off the canvas.

"When T.I. saw it, and I'm not stereotyping him, but I wouldn't have thought he'd feel the way he felt about it," Warfield admits, adding that the flags seem to resonate with a variety of people for very different reasons.

Now T.I. wants a third. Showcasing the flag's diversity, Warfield was recently commissioned to create a flag for Ford, "The United States of Innovation." Atlanta area restaurants such as Gio Di Palma's Little Italy complex on Hemphill Avenue and 10 Degrees South have commissioned custom-designed flags as well. Warfield says his goal is to have one of his flags in every professional sports team's corporate office and every university center.

"America has always been a country where people want freedom and creative self-expression, and that resonates with everyone," says Warfield, who will be exhibiting his remixed flags in Houston, Baltimore, and New Orleans. He has an upcoming Atlanta show at which he'll be exhibiting the remixed flags along with other art in May.

Ultimately, his remixed flags represent a new America, which speaks across societal barriers.

"No matter the color, fabric or design," he writes, "my flags all scream, 'I AM AMERICA.'""
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  string(5472) "It's an interesting time in America — unique even. Political and social unrest are fueling a frenzy for all things pop culture. Social media has undeniably shaped a culture of activism while also cultivating an environment for bullying. The country is as culturally diverse as it's ever been but nevertheless finds itself struggling very publicly with embracing change. It's an environment ripe for great art, and veteran Atlanta-based artist and designer [http://www.dlwarfield.com|DL Warfield] is up for the task.

In fact, Warfield's latest project, ''The American Flag Remixed'', is a projection of ever-evolving American cultural identity, expertly capturing the nuances that make up the current condition of the United States.

"The process initially came from a conversation with one of my mentors," the St. Louis native recalls. "We were talking about people's infatuation with becoming famous and everybody's thirst to be a celebrity. I was telling him we don't live in the United States of America; we live in the United States of Entertainment. I was like, damn, I should make a flag about that."

So he did. The first remixed flag he created was "[http://www.dlwarfield.com/The-United-States-of-Rock-and-Roll|The United States of Rock and Roll]" — he made it out of Levi denim, leather, and studs, and it reads, "rock or die." Warfield posted the art on social media, and a former Levi Strauss executive wanted it immediately. "I thought, ''I might be on to something''," says Warfield, who has called Atlanta home since 1995.

That may be an understatement. In fact, his latest project appears to be his magnum opus, and the most defining project to date in a long career that's been full of highlights. Since graduating with a BFA in painting from Washington University in St. Louis, Warfield has found success in both the art and corporate worlds as an artist with bold design inclinations, and as a creative curator with an innovative eye for branding.

Warfield's work, which he calls "Hop Art" because his love of hip-hop and urban culture operate in tandem with his fine art background, has been displayed all over the country, including at Miami's Art Basel and the Time-Life Building in New York. Through his boutique creative agency, Goldfinger c.s., he's also curated design projects for Ford, Nike, and Hennessy, and he's overseen branding and creative concepts for record companies including LaFace (he has art in L.A. Reid and Usher's homes), Def Jam, Universal Music Group, and Motown. To date, Warfield's work is tied to more than $700 million in record sales. In fact, it was Warfield who was responsible for the creative branding of OutKast's quadruple-platinum album, ''Stankonia'', which, ironically, [http://www.pastemagazine.com/blogs/lists/2009/11/the-25-best-album-covers-of-the-decade-2000-2009.html?p=5|pictured the duo] in front of a black-and-white American flag, though Warfield says, in that case, the flag was Andre 3000's idea.

Much like his career, the diversity of Warfield's flags appeals to corporate and hip-hop culture, to people who openly criticize America and its contradictions, and to people who embrace those inconsistencies with rose-tinged glasses. Using mixed media because it not only allows him to create faster, but also because it frees him creatively, Warfield embraces the varied interpretations of his flags. In fact, he thrives on it, because that diversity, much like the America that inspires him, is what makes it work.

"I guess what I've learned is people have different levels of patriotism," he says. "There are some people who, although they like living in America, may not be that comfortable waving an American flag. But when I remix it, based on what people have said, I add a level of coolness to it."

Grammy-winning rapper T.I. has purchased two of Warfield's flags, "[http://www.dlwarfield.com/The-United-States-of-Mi-Familia|The United States of Mi' Familia]," which is based on Warfield's own culturally diverse family since he's African-American and his wife is Italian-American, and "[http://www.dlwarfield.com/THE-UNITED-STATES-of-BOOM|The United States of Boom]," which features the flag superimposed over a boom box, a work that practically pops off the canvas.

"When T.I. saw it, and I'm not stereotyping him, but I wouldn't have thought he'd feel the way he felt about it," Warfield admits, adding that the flags seem to resonate with a variety of people for very different reasons.

Now T.I. wants a third. Showcasing the flag's diversity, Warfield was recently commissioned to create a flag for Ford, "The United States of Innovation." Atlanta area restaurants such as Gio Di Palma's Little Italy complex on Hemphill Avenue and 10 Degrees South have commissioned custom-designed flags as well. Warfield says his goal is to have one of his flags in every professional sports team's corporate office and every university center.

"America has always been a country where people want freedom and creative self-expression, and that resonates with everyone," says Warfield, who will be exhibiting his remixed flags in Houston, Baltimore, and New Orleans. He has an upcoming Atlanta show at which he'll be exhibiting the remixed flags along with other art in May.

Ultimately, his remixed flags represent a new America, which speaks across societal barriers.

"No matter the color, fabric or design," he writes, "[[my flags] all scream, 'I AM AMERICA.'""
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  string(5447) "    Artist DL Warfield's latest series shows different levels of patriotism   2015-04-09T08:00:00+00:00 Remixing the American flag ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Jacinta Howard 1306412 2015-04-09T08:00:00+00:00  It's an interesting time in America — unique even. Political and social unrest are fueling a frenzy for all things pop culture. Social media has undeniably shaped a culture of activism while also cultivating an environment for bullying. The country is as culturally diverse as it's ever been but nevertheless finds itself struggling very publicly with embracing change. It's an environment ripe for great art, and veteran Atlanta-based artist and designer DL Warfield is up for the task.

In fact, Warfield's latest project, The American Flag Remixed, is a projection of ever-evolving American cultural identity, expertly capturing the nuances that make up the current condition of the United States.

"The process initially came from a conversation with one of my mentors," the St. Louis native recalls. "We were talking about people's infatuation with becoming famous and everybody's thirst to be a celebrity. I was telling him we don't live in the United States of America; we live in the United States of Entertainment. I was like, damn, I should make a flag about that."

So he did. The first remixed flag he created was "The United States of Rock and Roll" — he made it out of Levi denim, leather, and studs, and it reads, "rock or die." Warfield posted the art on social media, and a former Levi Strauss executive wanted it immediately. "I thought, I might be on to something," says Warfield, who has called Atlanta home since 1995.

That may be an understatement. In fact, his latest project appears to be his magnum opus, and the most defining project to date in a long career that's been full of highlights. Since graduating with a BFA in painting from Washington University in St. Louis, Warfield has found success in both the art and corporate worlds as an artist with bold design inclinations, and as a creative curator with an innovative eye for branding.

Warfield's work, which he calls "Hop Art" because his love of hip-hop and urban culture operate in tandem with his fine art background, has been displayed all over the country, including at Miami's Art Basel and the Time-Life Building in New York. Through his boutique creative agency, Goldfinger c.s., he's also curated design projects for Ford, Nike, and Hennessy, and he's overseen branding and creative concepts for record companies including LaFace (he has art in L.A. Reid and Usher's homes), Def Jam, Universal Music Group, and Motown. To date, Warfield's work is tied to more than $700 million in record sales. In fact, it was Warfield who was responsible for the creative branding of OutKast's quadruple-platinum album, Stankonia, which, ironically, pictured the duo in front of a black-and-white American flag, though Warfield says, in that case, the flag was Andre 3000's idea.

Much like his career, the diversity of Warfield's flags appeals to corporate and hip-hop culture, to people who openly criticize America and its contradictions, and to people who embrace those inconsistencies with rose-tinged glasses. Using mixed media because it not only allows him to create faster, but also because it frees him creatively, Warfield embraces the varied interpretations of his flags. In fact, he thrives on it, because that diversity, much like the America that inspires him, is what makes it work.

"I guess what I've learned is people have different levels of patriotism," he says. "There are some people who, although they like living in America, may not be that comfortable waving an American flag. But when I remix it, based on what people have said, I add a level of coolness to it."

Grammy-winning rapper T.I. has purchased two of Warfield's flags, "The United States of Mi' Familia," which is based on Warfield's own culturally diverse family since he's African-American and his wife is Italian-American, and "The United States of Boom," which features the flag superimposed over a boom box, a work that practically pops off the canvas.

"When T.I. saw it, and I'm not stereotyping him, but I wouldn't have thought he'd feel the way he felt about it," Warfield admits, adding that the flags seem to resonate with a variety of people for very different reasons.

Now T.I. wants a third. Showcasing the flag's diversity, Warfield was recently commissioned to create a flag for Ford, "The United States of Innovation." Atlanta area restaurants such as Gio Di Palma's Little Italy complex on Hemphill Avenue and 10 Degrees South have commissioned custom-designed flags as well. Warfield says his goal is to have one of his flags in every professional sports team's corporate office and every university center.

"America has always been a country where people want freedom and creative self-expression, and that resonates with everyone," says Warfield, who will be exhibiting his remixed flags in Houston, Baltimore, and New Orleans. He has an upcoming Atlanta show at which he'll be exhibiting the remixed flags along with other art in May.

Ultimately, his remixed flags represent a new America, which speaks across societal barriers.

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Thursday April 9, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist DL Warfield's latest series shows different levels of patriotism | more...
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  string(3343) "Artist Christopher Kuhl has traveled all over the world, but always finds himself back in Atlanta. He served as the Visual Arts Specialist for the City of Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics and has had exhibitions everywhere, from Myanmar to Europe and the Middle East. Using photography and painting, Kuhl creates layered mixed-media works that reflect his travels. His latest exhibition, Searching for Redtown, focuses on his recent travels in the Southeast in search of Native Americans' history and their current rural presence.

Kuhl talked to Creative Loafing about displaying his artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library and exploring Native American culture in the South through his work.

The Atlanta-Fulton Library is such an interesting venue to display work. How did that come about? Did the location influence your work in any way?

I have always wanted to exhibit my artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton County Library, as it is a crown jewel of our ring of libraries and it's a central crossroads/ground zero of Atlanta culture and history. Serendipity brought me here — it is an open process — Chera Baugh adores art and has a Masters in Art History from Emory University and directs the gallery.

Tell me about the concept behind your show, Searching for Redtown.

Searching for Redtown came to me as a title from a series of works based upon my research, reading, and travels in the Southeast. I traveled through Alabama, Georgia, and Florida in search of a Native American presence or prescience in theses rural areas. It was the beginning of a 13-year journey to seek the earliest cultural imprints in this region. I gave my "REDTOWN 1" painting to my brother before he left to teach English in Afghanistan for good luck!

What inspired Redtown? Was it a place you visited during your travels?

Redtown was an actual Seminole/Creek town for over 70 years, but after the Seminole Wars and Trail of Tears, it does not exist today. It's an empty space, a deep space that could only be filled in by the imagination. Later, I realized that everyone is searching for Redtown — or a spiritual home — a place of total acceptance where self-revelation is a daily or hourly process.

My interest in Native American culture, art, language, and ritual goes back to a college course called "Poets of the Earth," and since, I have visited many Native Americans' reservations from Washington State, Oregon, and Arizona to the East Coast in search of experiences that tumble away one's preconceptions and lead to new ways of thinking. I hope that these recent paintings keep me moving in an open-ended journey to express emotive gestures and unconscious uncritical acceptance and surprise.

You've been all over the world, from New York City to Japan, and now you're back here again. What are your thoughts on how the Atlanta art scene has changed since you worked for the City of Atlanta?

Atlanta is mushrooming culturally — so many new young artists, recent art school graduates, and mid-career practitioners — it is really a large communal vibe here among new galleries, art spaces and emerging collectives and art colleges — a really bright future indeed if the public and artists can truly interact! Someone should invite all Atlanta artists and cultural groups to a grand convention at the Georgia Dome!"
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  string(3595) "Artist Christopher Kuhl has traveled all over the world, but always finds himself back in Atlanta. He served as the Visual Arts Specialist for the City of Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics and has had exhibitions everywhere, from Myanmar to Europe and the Middle East. Using photography and painting, Kuhl creates layered mixed-media works that reflect his travels. His latest exhibition, ''[http://www.afpls.org/events/art-exhibitions|Searching for Redtown]'', focuses on his recent travels in the Southeast in search of Native Americans' history and their current rural presence.

Kuhl talked to ''Creative Loafing'' about displaying his artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library and exploring Native American culture in the South through his work.

__The Atlanta-Fulton Library is such an interesting venue to display work. How did that come about? Did the location influence your work in any way?__

I have always wanted to exhibit my artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton County Library, as it is a crown jewel of our ring of libraries and it's a central crossroads/ground zero of Atlanta culture and history. Serendipity brought me here — it is an open process — Chera Baugh adores art and has a Masters in Art History from Emory University and directs the gallery.

__Tell me about the concept behind your show, ''Searching for Redtown''.__

''Searching for Redtown'' came to me as a title from a series of works based upon my research, reading, and travels in the Southeast. [[I traveled through] Alabama, Georgia, and Florida in search of a Native American presence or prescience in theses rural areas. It was the beginning of a 13-year journey to seek the earliest cultural imprints in this region. I gave my "REDTOWN 1" painting to my brother before he left to teach English in Afghanistan for good luck!

__What inspired ''Redtown''? Was it a place you visited during your travels?__

Redtown was an actual Seminole/Creek town for over 70 years, but after the [http://dos.myflorida.com/florida-facts/florida-history/seminole-history/the-seminole-wars/|Seminole Wars] and [http://www.history.com/topics/native-american-history/trail-of-tears|Trail of Tears], it does not exist today. It's an empty space, a deep space that could only be filled in by the imagination. Later, I realized that everyone is searching for Redtown — or a spiritual home — a place of total acceptance where self-revelation is a daily or hourly process.

My interest in Native American culture, art, language, and ritual goes back to a college course called "Poets of the Earth," and since, I have visited many Native Americans' reservations from Washington State, Oregon, [[and] Arizona to the East Coast in search of experiences that tumble away one's preconceptions and lead to new ways of thinking. I hope that these recent paintings keep me moving in an open-ended journey to express emotive gestures and unconscious uncritical acceptance and surprise.

__You've been all over the world, from New York City to Japan, and now you're back here again. What are your thoughts on how the Atlanta art scene has changed since you worked for the City of Atlanta?__

Atlanta is mushrooming culturally — so many new young artists, recent art school graduates, and mid-career practitioners — it is really a large communal vibe here among new galleries, art spaces and emerging collectives and art colleges — a really bright future indeed if the public and artists can truly interact! Someone should invite all Atlanta artists and cultural groups to a grand convention at the Georgia Dome!"
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  string(3676) "    Artist finds inspiration in Native American history in the Southeast   2015-04-06T08:00:00+00:00 Christopher Kuhl is "Searching for Redtown" ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-04-06T08:00:00+00:00  Artist Christopher Kuhl has traveled all over the world, but always finds himself back in Atlanta. He served as the Visual Arts Specialist for the City of Atlanta during the 1996 Olympics and has had exhibitions everywhere, from Myanmar to Europe and the Middle East. Using photography and painting, Kuhl creates layered mixed-media works that reflect his travels. His latest exhibition, Searching for Redtown, focuses on his recent travels in the Southeast in search of Native Americans' history and their current rural presence.

Kuhl talked to Creative Loafing about displaying his artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library and exploring Native American culture in the South through his work.

The Atlanta-Fulton Library is such an interesting venue to display work. How did that come about? Did the location influence your work in any way?

I have always wanted to exhibit my artwork at the Atlanta-Fulton County Library, as it is a crown jewel of our ring of libraries and it's a central crossroads/ground zero of Atlanta culture and history. Serendipity brought me here — it is an open process — Chera Baugh adores art and has a Masters in Art History from Emory University and directs the gallery.

Tell me about the concept behind your show, Searching for Redtown.

Searching for Redtown came to me as a title from a series of works based upon my research, reading, and travels in the Southeast. I traveled through Alabama, Georgia, and Florida in search of a Native American presence or prescience in theses rural areas. It was the beginning of a 13-year journey to seek the earliest cultural imprints in this region. I gave my "REDTOWN 1" painting to my brother before he left to teach English in Afghanistan for good luck!

What inspired Redtown? Was it a place you visited during your travels?

Redtown was an actual Seminole/Creek town for over 70 years, but after the Seminole Wars and Trail of Tears, it does not exist today. It's an empty space, a deep space that could only be filled in by the imagination. Later, I realized that everyone is searching for Redtown — or a spiritual home — a place of total acceptance where self-revelation is a daily or hourly process.

My interest in Native American culture, art, language, and ritual goes back to a college course called "Poets of the Earth," and since, I have visited many Native Americans' reservations from Washington State, Oregon, and Arizona to the East Coast in search of experiences that tumble away one's preconceptions and lead to new ways of thinking. I hope that these recent paintings keep me moving in an open-ended journey to express emotive gestures and unconscious uncritical acceptance and surprise.

You've been all over the world, from New York City to Japan, and now you're back here again. What are your thoughts on how the Atlanta art scene has changed since you worked for the City of Atlanta?

Atlanta is mushrooming culturally — so many new young artists, recent art school graduates, and mid-career practitioners — it is really a large communal vibe here among new galleries, art spaces and emerging collectives and art colleges — a really bright future indeed if the public and artists can truly interact! Someone should invite all Atlanta artists and cultural groups to a grand convention at the Georgia Dome!             13082471 13931223                          Christopher Kuhl is "Searching for Redtown" "
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Monday April 6, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist finds inspiration in Native American history in the Southeast | more...
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  string(3540) "Jeremy Townsend, otherwise known as Jert, has covered Atlanta's galleries, doorways, and growlers with his definitively cool and borderline absurd illustrations. His warm embrace of popular culture and easy undercurrent of satire have garnered a strong fan base — one look at his portfolio and it's clear why. As weird and parodic as his work is, however, Jert's motivation for his latest project is about as straightforward as they come. Being the creative humanitarian that he is, Jert sent out an invitation to his most talented friends and voila: People Ruined the Internet was born. Held at Hodgepodge Coffeehouse and Gallery, the gallery event will feature both a solo exhibition of Jert's art as well as a group show to benefit Jert's charity of choice: the Center for Children and Young Adults (CCYA). CCYA, which will receive 25 percent of the proceeds from the event, works to provide safe environments for abused, neglected, and at-risk children. The substantial percentage is made possible by the philanthropic involvement of the artists and venue alike, as well as some very intentional planning on the part of Jert.

"So much charity work, especially with the arts, involves getting dressed up in a tuxedo and hanging out and looking at each other and seeing who's cooler for giving more money — and that totally works, totally fine for those organizations," Jert says. "But I know there's a lot of people like me who are regular people, low to medium income, that do want to help, do love art, but just don't have venues and art accessible to them. So I wanted to create something that was accessible."

Accessible as the exhibition will be, don't be fooled by the event's down-to-earth presentation — the content of the event is worth more than a passing glance. In addition to Jert's previously unseen art, the group show contains work from Oscar-winning artist Joe Bluhm, MAD magazine artist Tom Richmond, and other nationally recognized talent such as Ed Steckley and Brett W. Thompson, as well as local heroes Catlanta and Aaron Crawford of Cavitycolors.

With some black-and-white drawings starting at only $50, visitors shouldn't worry about how thick their wallets are, either. Some of Jert's most popular prints will be seen in their original, large-scale form for the first time as well. Like his illustrations that showcase the absurdity of pop culture, the theme of the event is a clever nod to the undercurrent of its purpose.

"Domestic violence itself is really hard for people to talk about, and it's really hard for people to wrap their minds around," Jert says. "I myself am actually a survivor of domestic violence from childhood, and that's why it's so important to me. I feel the need for dialogue to open up about how we can all find a solution and how we can all figure out what the resources that people need to escape these situations and become functional members of the world."

Works in the group show vary from woodcuts to black-and-white drawings, all tailored to the theme of the exhibition in a unique way. Showcasing both old and new work, Jert's pieces range in medium and price to attract a wider audience. Purchasers of Jert's work will also receive a live custom drawing of his choice.

"Not to be lame, but it truly is a hodgepodge of work," says Jert, alluding to the site of the event. "It's an unassuming venue. It's a laid back evening. I want to have an event that everyone feels comfortable walking into — you don't have to think about how cool your pants are.""
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  string(3904) "Jeremy Townsend, otherwise known as [http://www.iamjert.com/|Jert], has covered Atlanta's galleries, doorways, and growlers with his definitively cool and borderline absurd illustrations. His warm embrace of popular culture and easy undercurrent of satire have garnered a strong fan base — one look at his portfolio and it's clear why. As weird and parodic as his work is, however, Jert's motivation for his latest project is about as straightforward as they come. Being the creative humanitarian that he is, Jert sent out an invitation to his most talented friends and voila: ''[https://www.facebook.com/events/1547053808916171/|People Ruined the Internet]'' was born. Held at Hodgepodge Coffeehouse and Gallery, the gallery event will feature both a solo exhibition of Jert's art as well as a group show to benefit Jert's charity of choice: the [http://ccyakids.org/|Center for Children and Young Adults] (CCYA). CCYA, which will receive 25 percent of the proceeds from the event, works to provide safe environments for abused, neglected, and at-risk children. The substantial percentage is made possible by the philanthropic involvement of the artists and venue alike, as well as some very intentional planning on the part of Jert.

"So much charity work, especially with the arts, involves getting dressed up in a tuxedo and hanging out and looking at each other and seeing who's cooler for giving more money — and that totally works, totally fine for those organizations," Jert says. "But I know there's a lot of people like me who are regular people, low to medium income, that do want to help, do love art, but just don't have venues and art accessible to [[them]. So I wanted to create something that was accessible."

Accessible as the exhibition will be, don't be fooled by the event's down-to-earth presentation — the content of the event is worth more than a passing glance. In addition to Jert's previously unseen art, the group show contains work from Oscar-winning artist [http://www.cia.edu/news/stories/leap-of-faith-leads-joe-bluhm-03-to-academy-award-winning-film|Joe Bluhm], ''MAD'' magazine artist [http://www.tomrichmond.com/blog/|Tom Richmond], and other nationally recognized talent such as [http://edsteckley.com/|Ed Steckley] and [http://www.fluidtoons.com/|Brett W. Thompson], as well as local heroes [https://www.facebook.com/catlantaart|Catlanta] and Aaron Crawford of [http://cavitycolors.com/|Cavitycolors].

With some black-and-white drawings starting at only $50, visitors shouldn't worry about how thick their wallets are, either. Some of Jert's most popular prints will be seen in their original, large-scale form for the first time as well. Like his illustrations that showcase the absurdity of pop culture, the theme of the event is a clever nod to the undercurrent of its purpose.

"Domestic violence itself is really hard for people to talk about, and it's really hard for people to wrap their minds around," Jert says. "I myself am actually a survivor of domestic violence from childhood, and that's why it's so important to me. I feel the need for dialogue to open up about how we can all find a solution and how we can all figure out what the resources that people need to escape these situations and become functional members of the world."

Works in the group show vary from woodcuts to black-and-white drawings, all tailored to the theme of the exhibition in a unique way. Showcasing both old and new work, Jert's pieces range in medium and price to attract a wider audience. Purchasers of Jert's work will also receive a live custom drawing of his choice.

"Not to be lame, but it truly is a hodgepodge of work," says Jert, alluding to the site of the event. "It's an unassuming venue. It's a laid back evening. I want to have an event that everyone feels comfortable walking into — you don't have to think about how cool your pants are.""
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"So much charity work, especially with the arts, involves getting dressed up in a tuxedo and hanging out and looking at each other and seeing who's cooler for giving more money — and that totally works, totally fine for those organizations," Jert says. "But I know there's a lot of people like me who are regular people, low to medium income, that do want to help, do love art, but just don't have venues and art accessible to them. So I wanted to create something that was accessible."

Accessible as the exhibition will be, don't be fooled by the event's down-to-earth presentation — the content of the event is worth more than a passing glance. In addition to Jert's previously unseen art, the group show contains work from Oscar-winning artist Joe Bluhm, MAD magazine artist Tom Richmond, and other nationally recognized talent such as Ed Steckley and Brett W. Thompson, as well as local heroes Catlanta and Aaron Crawford of Cavitycolors.

With some black-and-white drawings starting at only $50, visitors shouldn't worry about how thick their wallets are, either. Some of Jert's most popular prints will be seen in their original, large-scale form for the first time as well. Like his illustrations that showcase the absurdity of pop culture, the theme of the event is a clever nod to the undercurrent of its purpose.

"Domestic violence itself is really hard for people to talk about, and it's really hard for people to wrap their minds around," Jert says. "I myself am actually a survivor of domestic violence from childhood, and that's why it's so important to me. I feel the need for dialogue to open up about how we can all find a solution and how we can all figure out what the resources that people need to escape these situations and become functional members of the world."

Works in the group show vary from woodcuts to black-and-white drawings, all tailored to the theme of the exhibition in a unique way. Showcasing both old and new work, Jert's pieces range in medium and price to attract a wider audience. Purchasers of Jert's work will also receive a live custom drawing of his choice.

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  string(5136) "Fabian Williams doesn't remember the first time he was introduced to Norman Rockwell — it was either in elementary or middle school — but he does remember the immediate impact. It was profound. And it's stuck with Williams throughout his career.

"[[Rockwell's] way of capturing caricatures to tell the story of American culture has always been an influence on my work," Williams says.

So it's fitting that the Atlanta-based artist's latest show, Rockingwell, is a tribute of sorts to the art icon's popular painting "The Gossips," which has long been one of Williams' favorite pieces. Williams, however, has an interesting take on the painting — he'll be focusing on Atlanta-based artists and using portraits of them for his show at the Rialto Center for the Arts.

His reasoning is simple: He wants to create a new level of interaction and understanding among the various art cliques that are in the city. As Williams has observed, Atlanta is on the cusp of becoming recognized nationally as a legitimate arts hub, and with that in mind it's become even more important for the various arts communities to start to intersect in a more meaningful way.

"I've noticed in Atlanta over the years, different groups circulate in a specific community," Williams observes, comparing the art circles to real life demographic splits in American communities. "You have artists that come for a particular background — urban art is over here on this side, then you have the academic art side, and the hobbyists are over here and they sort of touch each other, but not really. I have my foot in some of those different groups, and I'm going to be documenting how things circulate between them using 'The Gossips' model."

Williams says he was able to interact with artists from the various arts scenes while he curated the World Wide Arts Federation Art Battles (which he eventually plans to bring back in a slightly different format) and has observed that the most successful way artists began to garner a following is simply through word of mouth, which he plans to illustrate, literally, through his new series.

"When Norman Rockwell approached it in "The Gossips" it was a small town depiction, but I involved social media and smart phones and technology because it's a big part of American society and the art community," Williams explains. "I'm exploring the way an artist rises in the art scene and how technology plays a role in that. Someone needed to capture the people involved in Atlanta's visual arts movement and put it into contact as it emerges."

As he spouts off the names of artists whom he deems on the cusp of becoming national heavyweights in the visual arts world — including Fahamu Pecou (whose work is being exhibited in the Imagining New Worlds series at the High Museum), PaperFrank, Michael Rooks, Miya Bailey, and others — it's hard not to be swept up in his enthusiasm. After all, this is a guy who has not just established himself as an ambassador for getting Atlanta's arts scene recognized but also has long proven his own artistic talent runs deep.

After graduating with a B.F.A. in Illustration from Eastern Carolina University, Williams moved from his hometown of Fayetteville, N.C., to Atlanta in search of a job. He eventually ended up working for an L.A.-based company where he did web design and found success as a commercial illustrator for several HBO shows.

"The design money was great, but there was something internally that I wanted to express," he remembers. "I started to have a philosophical disagreement with advertisement in general. I started to delve into the fine arts to give my soul a break. That's how I ended up where I am now — 80 percent fine art and 20 percent advertising."

With the World Wide Arts Federation competitions which featured "battles" between contemporary visual artists of William's choosing, styled after a wrestling match with elements of a hip-hop rap battle, Williams declared his eye for recognizing talent and his flair for the dramatic, as he would always don a cape and completely cover his face with mask for each event. But it's Williams' Race Card series, which features prominent players in American politics such as Bill O'Reilly and Al Sharpton, that clarified his ability to merge strong sociopolitical sentiments with humor.

"Humor is a way to deal with difficult situations without crying," he says. "I use humor as a way to disarm the seriousness of the issue, so my work is just a reflection of my mentality. I'm kind of a smart-ass so that translates."

Currently, Williams' Dungeon Family Pyramid is on display in Piedmont Park, a piece that he says was inspired by the Sistine Chapel stylings because he's a huge fan of the Renaissance period. And next up, he plans to unveil a new series of works called Contraption, using the Rube Goldberg machine ideology to take a deeper look at conspiracy theories using various mediums including sculpture, paint and video.

And as with all of Williams' work, the plan is to take you beyond observation and give you an experience. Doesn't get much cooler than that."
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  string(6064) "[http://occasionalsuperstar.com/cv.html|Fabian Williams] doesn't remember the first time he was introduced to [http://www.nrm.org/|Norman Rockwell] — it was either in elementary or middle school — but he does remember the immediate impact. It was profound. And it's stuck with Williams throughout his career.

"[[[[Rockwell's] way of capturing caricatures to tell the story of American culture has always been an influence on my work," Williams says.

So it's fitting that the Atlanta-based artist's latest show, ''[http://rialto.gsu.edu/calendar/visual-arts-series-rockingwell-fabian-williams/?instance_id=9287|Rockingwell]'', is a tribute of sorts to the art icon's popular painting "[http://www.nrm.org/2014/02/norman-rockwell-museum-welcomes-back-norman-rockwells-the-gossips/|The Gossips]," which has long been one of Williams' favorite pieces. Williams, however, has an interesting take on the painting — he'll be focusing on Atlanta-based artists and using portraits of them for his show at the Rialto Center for the Arts.

His reasoning is simple: He wants to create a new level of interaction and understanding among the various art cliques that are in the city. As Williams has observed, Atlanta is on the cusp of becoming recognized nationally as a legitimate arts hub, and with that in mind it's become even more important for the various arts communities to start to intersect in a more meaningful way.

"I've noticed in Atlanta over the years, different groups circulate in a specific community," Williams observes, comparing the art circles to real life demographic splits in American communities. "You have artists that come for a particular background — urban art is over here on this side, then you have the academic art side, and the hobbyists are over here and they sort of touch each other, but not really. I have my foot in some of those different groups, and I'm going to be documenting how things circulate between them using 'The Gossips' model."

Williams says he was able to interact with artists from the various arts scenes while he curated the [http://clatl.com/atlanta/best-local-art-beef/BestOf?oid=3986668|World Wide Arts Federation Art Battles] (which he eventually plans to bring back in a slightly different format) and has observed that the most successful way artists began to garner a following is simply through word of mouth, which he plans to illustrate, literally, through his new series.

"When Norman Rockwell approached it in "The Gossips" it was a small town depiction, but I involved social media and smart phones and technology because it's a big part of American society and the art community," Williams explains. "I'm exploring the way an artist rises in the art scene and how technology plays a role in that. Someone needed to capture the people involved in Atlanta's visual arts movement and put it into contact as it emerges."

As he spouts off the names of artists whom he deems on the cusp of becoming national heavyweights in the visual arts world — including Fahamu Pecou (whose work is being exhibited in the ''[http://www.high.org/Art/Exhibitions/Imagining-New-Worlds.aspx?gclid=CMP0nrmtycQCFSgV7AodUCgA7Q|Imagining New Worlds]'' series at the High Museum), [http://clatl.com/atlanta/paper-franks-beautiful-twisted-reality/Content?oid=9059029|PaperFrank], [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2015/03/27/the-highs-michael-rooks-to-receive-the-nexus-award|Michael Rooks], [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2014/02/10/a-few-questions-with-miya-bailey-and-corey-davis|Miya Bailey], and others — it's hard not to be swept up in his enthusiasm. After all, this is a guy who has not just established himself as an ambassador for getting Atlanta's arts scene recognized but also has long proven his own artistic talent runs deep.

After graduating with a B.F.A. in Illustration from Eastern Carolina University, Williams moved from his hometown of Fayetteville, N.C., to Atlanta in search of a job. He eventually ended up working for an L.A.-based company where he did web design and found success as a commercial illustrator for several HBO shows.

"The design money was great, but there was something internally that I wanted to express," he remembers. "I started to have a philosophical disagreement with advertisement in general. I started to delve into the fine arts to give my soul a break. That's how I ended up where I am now — 80 percent fine art and 20 percent advertising."

With the World Wide Arts Federation competitions which featured "battles" between contemporary visual artists of William's choosing, styled after a wrestling match with elements of a hip-hop rap battle, Williams declared his eye for recognizing talent and his flair for the dramatic, as he would always don a cape and completely cover his face with mask for each event. But it's Williams' ''Race Card'' series, which features prominent players in American politics such as Bill O'Reilly and Al Sharpton, that clarified his ability to merge strong sociopolitical sentiments with humor.

"Humor is a way to deal with difficult situations without crying," he says. "I use humor as a way to disarm the seriousness of the issue, so my work is just a reflection of my mentality. I'm kind of a smart-ass so that translates."

Currently, Williams' [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2014/09/19/behold-a-dungeon-family-pyramid-on-the-beltline|Dungeon Family Pyramid] is on display in Piedmont Park, a piece that he says was inspired by the [http://www.vatican.va/various/cappelle/sistina_vr/index.html?utm_source=Twitter|Sistine Chapel] stylings because he's a huge fan of the Renaissance period. And next up, he plans to unveil a new series of works called ''Contraption'', using the [http://rubegoldberg.com/|Rube Goldberg] machine ideology to take a deeper look at conspiracy theories using various mediums including sculpture, paint and video.

And as with all of Williams' work, the plan is to take you beyond observation and give you an experience. Doesn't get much cooler than that."
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  string(5472) "    Artist's latest work is a push to connect ATL's bubbling arts communities   2015-03-31T08:00:00+00:00 Fabian Williams channels "The Gossips" ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Jacinta Howard 1306412 2015-03-31T08:00:00+00:00  Fabian Williams doesn't remember the first time he was introduced to Norman Rockwell — it was either in elementary or middle school — but he does remember the immediate impact. It was profound. And it's stuck with Williams throughout his career.

"[[Rockwell's] way of capturing caricatures to tell the story of American culture has always been an influence on my work," Williams says.

So it's fitting that the Atlanta-based artist's latest show, Rockingwell, is a tribute of sorts to the art icon's popular painting "The Gossips," which has long been one of Williams' favorite pieces. Williams, however, has an interesting take on the painting — he'll be focusing on Atlanta-based artists and using portraits of them for his show at the Rialto Center for the Arts.

His reasoning is simple: He wants to create a new level of interaction and understanding among the various art cliques that are in the city. As Williams has observed, Atlanta is on the cusp of becoming recognized nationally as a legitimate arts hub, and with that in mind it's become even more important for the various arts communities to start to intersect in a more meaningful way.

"I've noticed in Atlanta over the years, different groups circulate in a specific community," Williams observes, comparing the art circles to real life demographic splits in American communities. "You have artists that come for a particular background — urban art is over here on this side, then you have the academic art side, and the hobbyists are over here and they sort of touch each other, but not really. I have my foot in some of those different groups, and I'm going to be documenting how things circulate between them using 'The Gossips' model."

Williams says he was able to interact with artists from the various arts scenes while he curated the World Wide Arts Federation Art Battles (which he eventually plans to bring back in a slightly different format) and has observed that the most successful way artists began to garner a following is simply through word of mouth, which he plans to illustrate, literally, through his new series.

"When Norman Rockwell approached it in "The Gossips" it was a small town depiction, but I involved social media and smart phones and technology because it's a big part of American society and the art community," Williams explains. "I'm exploring the way an artist rises in the art scene and how technology plays a role in that. Someone needed to capture the people involved in Atlanta's visual arts movement and put it into contact as it emerges."

As he spouts off the names of artists whom he deems on the cusp of becoming national heavyweights in the visual arts world — including Fahamu Pecou (whose work is being exhibited in the Imagining New Worlds series at the High Museum), PaperFrank, Michael Rooks, Miya Bailey, and others — it's hard not to be swept up in his enthusiasm. After all, this is a guy who has not just established himself as an ambassador for getting Atlanta's arts scene recognized but also has long proven his own artistic talent runs deep.

After graduating with a B.F.A. in Illustration from Eastern Carolina University, Williams moved from his hometown of Fayetteville, N.C., to Atlanta in search of a job. He eventually ended up working for an L.A.-based company where he did web design and found success as a commercial illustrator for several HBO shows.

"The design money was great, but there was something internally that I wanted to express," he remembers. "I started to have a philosophical disagreement with advertisement in general. I started to delve into the fine arts to give my soul a break. That's how I ended up where I am now — 80 percent fine art and 20 percent advertising."

With the World Wide Arts Federation competitions which featured "battles" between contemporary visual artists of William's choosing, styled after a wrestling match with elements of a hip-hop rap battle, Williams declared his eye for recognizing talent and his flair for the dramatic, as he would always don a cape and completely cover his face with mask for each event. But it's Williams' Race Card series, which features prominent players in American politics such as Bill O'Reilly and Al Sharpton, that clarified his ability to merge strong sociopolitical sentiments with humor.

"Humor is a way to deal with difficult situations without crying," he says. "I use humor as a way to disarm the seriousness of the issue, so my work is just a reflection of my mentality. I'm kind of a smart-ass so that translates."

Currently, Williams' Dungeon Family Pyramid is on display in Piedmont Park, a piece that he says was inspired by the Sistine Chapel stylings because he's a huge fan of the Renaissance period. And next up, he plans to unveil a new series of works called Contraption, using the Rube Goldberg machine ideology to take a deeper look at conspiracy theories using various mediums including sculpture, paint and video.

And as with all of Williams' work, the plan is to take you beyond observation and give you an experience. Doesn't get much cooler than that.       0,0,10      13082417 13887582                          Fabian Williams channels "The Gossips" "
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Article

Tuesday March 31, 2015 04:00 am EDT
Artist's latest work is a push to connect ATL's bubbling arts communities | more...
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  string(71) "Annual Art Auction to kick off long-term, creative vision for new venue"
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  string(3367) "Fate seems to have played a hand in the location of Burnaway's annual Art Crush Auction this year. When executive director Susannah Darrow talks about the new venue, she is visibly excited.

"We walked in the building and everyone's jaws kind of dropped open," Darrow says. "It's one of those spaces where you're like, 'How has this not been used for the last 20 years?'"

The old Abrams Fixture Corporation building, located in Adair Park, has been sitting vacant for almost 10 years, a victim of vandalism and time. Three months ago, owners went in and began phase one of a plan to fill the 27,000-square-foot building with artists and manufacturers, ultimately cultivating a larger community for creatives. One of those owners, Greg Swartzberg, would even like to open a coffee shop on the corner.

"I think it could be a nice community when it's all done," Swartzberg says. "The building definitely lends itself to artists' creative space."

For the Burnaway team, to inaugurate the space was a no-brainer. Previously held in venues such as 7 Stages Theatre and Paris on Ponce, the annual auction has been limited by space, as well as the regular programming of the hosting venues. In the past, the organization was unable to do installations, start work early, or really take the time to make use of the space. Because Abrams Fixture Corporation's more or less uninhabited — and, frankly, larger — Burnaway has had much more flexibility.

Sumptuary's Mike Stasny, who acted as artistic director for the event, helped curate and commissioned six artists to activate the new space in various ways. Molly Rose Freeman's immersive sculpture will greet visitors in the entry hall, while Megan Mosholder's light-based string installation, "Terminus," will be located farther into the building. Goat Farm Artistic Director Mark DiNatale, also contributed to the layout of the event. "I think the installations will be able to highlight the architecture of the space and show off some of the really beautiful but totally weird aspects of the building," Darrow says.

Though ultimately a fundraiser, the event's mission is to showcase artists who have stood out over the last year. As Darrow explains, not all of those artists' works are necessarily "auctionable." The physical space will facilitate the presentation of this type of work. Other nontraditional features will include auctioned experiences with various creative locals. People such as poet and author Daniel Bosch and Deer Bear Wolf's Davy Minor will offer up unique experiences to the highest bidder. Laura Relyea of Scoutmob and Vouched Books will even do a glitter experience in honor of her recently released chapbook on pop star Ke$ha.

The silent auction, though less loud, will include both emerging and established artists, making the event accessible to a variety of collectors. Items include a painting from a series that appeared in Scott Ingram's recent show at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia to a small etching by muralist Trek Matthews. "We've tried to make sure that anyone attending has the opportunity to potentially participate," Darrows says.

With sketch comedy duo Bland Hack as auctioneers, a unique collection of installations, and an open bar with signature cocktails from the Sound Table, even attendees without paddles should be able to do just that."
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  string(3426) "Fate seems to have played a hand in the location of [http://www.burnaway.org|Burnaway]'s annual [http://artcrushauction.com/|Art Crush Auction] this year. When executive director Susannah Darrow talks about the new venue, she is visibly excited.

"We walked in the building and everyone's jaws kind of dropped open," Darrow says. "It's one of those spaces where you're like, 'How has this not been used for the last 20 years?'"

The old Abrams Fixture Corporation building, located in Adair Park, has been sitting vacant for almost 10 years, a victim of vandalism and time. Three months ago, owners went in and began phase one of a plan to fill the 27,000-square-foot building with artists and manufacturers, ultimately cultivating a larger community for creatives. One of those owners, Greg Swartzberg, would even like to open a coffee shop on the corner.

"I think it could be a nice community when it's all done," Swartzberg says. "The building definitely lends itself to artists' creative space."

For the Burnaway team, to inaugurate the space was a no-brainer. Previously held in venues such as 7 Stages Theatre and Paris on Ponce, the annual auction has been limited by space, as well as the regular programming of the hosting venues. In the past, the organization was unable to do installations, start work early, or really take the time to make use of the space. Because Abrams Fixture Corporation's more or less uninhabited — and, frankly, larger — Burnaway has had much more flexibility.

Sumptuary's Mike Stasny, who acted as artistic director for the event, helped curate and commissioned six artists to activate the new space in various ways. Molly Rose Freeman's immersive sculpture will greet visitors in the entry hall, while Megan Mosholder's light-based string installation, "Terminus," will be located farther into the building. Goat Farm Artistic Director Mark DiNatale, also contributed to the layout of the event. "I think [[the installations] will be able to highlight the architecture of the space and show off some of the really beautiful but totally weird aspects of the building," Darrow says.

Though ultimately a fundraiser, the event's mission is to showcase artists who have stood out over the last year. As Darrow explains, not all of those artists' works are necessarily "auctionable." The physical space will facilitate the presentation of this type of work. Other nontraditional features will include auctioned experiences with various creative locals. People such as poet and author Daniel Bosch and Deer Bear Wolf's Davy Minor will offer up unique experiences to the highest bidder. Laura Relyea of Scoutmob and Vouched Books will even do a glitter experience in honor of her recently released chapbook on pop star Ke$ha.

The silent auction, though less loud, will include both emerging and established artists, making the event accessible to a variety of collectors. Items include a painting from a series that appeared in Scott Ingram's recent show at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia to a small etching by muralist Trek Matthews. "We've tried to make sure that anyone attending has the opportunity to potentially participate," Darrows says.

With sketch comedy duo Bland Hack as auctioneers, a unique collection of installations, and an open bar with signature cocktails from the Sound Table, even attendees without paddles should be able to do just that."
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  string(3680) "    Annual Art Auction to kick off long-term, creative vision for new venue   2015-03-03T09:00:00+00:00 Burnaway's Crush hits Adair Park ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Kate Douds 13167192 2015-03-03T09:00:00+00:00  Fate seems to have played a hand in the location of Burnaway's annual Art Crush Auction this year. When executive director Susannah Darrow talks about the new venue, she is visibly excited.

"We walked in the building and everyone's jaws kind of dropped open," Darrow says. "It's one of those spaces where you're like, 'How has this not been used for the last 20 years?'"

The old Abrams Fixture Corporation building, located in Adair Park, has been sitting vacant for almost 10 years, a victim of vandalism and time. Three months ago, owners went in and began phase one of a plan to fill the 27,000-square-foot building with artists and manufacturers, ultimately cultivating a larger community for creatives. One of those owners, Greg Swartzberg, would even like to open a coffee shop on the corner.

"I think it could be a nice community when it's all done," Swartzberg says. "The building definitely lends itself to artists' creative space."

For the Burnaway team, to inaugurate the space was a no-brainer. Previously held in venues such as 7 Stages Theatre and Paris on Ponce, the annual auction has been limited by space, as well as the regular programming of the hosting venues. In the past, the organization was unable to do installations, start work early, or really take the time to make use of the space. Because Abrams Fixture Corporation's more or less uninhabited — and, frankly, larger — Burnaway has had much more flexibility.

Sumptuary's Mike Stasny, who acted as artistic director for the event, helped curate and commissioned six artists to activate the new space in various ways. Molly Rose Freeman's immersive sculpture will greet visitors in the entry hall, while Megan Mosholder's light-based string installation, "Terminus," will be located farther into the building. Goat Farm Artistic Director Mark DiNatale, also contributed to the layout of the event. "I think the installations will be able to highlight the architecture of the space and show off some of the really beautiful but totally weird aspects of the building," Darrow says.

Though ultimately a fundraiser, the event's mission is to showcase artists who have stood out over the last year. As Darrow explains, not all of those artists' works are necessarily "auctionable." The physical space will facilitate the presentation of this type of work. Other nontraditional features will include auctioned experiences with various creative locals. People such as poet and author Daniel Bosch and Deer Bear Wolf's Davy Minor will offer up unique experiences to the highest bidder. Laura Relyea of Scoutmob and Vouched Books will even do a glitter experience in honor of her recently released chapbook on pop star Ke$ha.

The silent auction, though less loud, will include both emerging and established artists, making the event accessible to a variety of collectors. Items include a painting from a series that appeared in Scott Ingram's recent show at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia to a small etching by muralist Trek Matthews. "We've tried to make sure that anyone attending has the opportunity to potentially participate," Darrows says.

With sketch comedy duo Bland Hack as auctioneers, a unique collection of installations, and an open bar with signature cocktails from the Sound Table, even attendees without paddles should be able to do just that.             13082048 13661513                          Burnaway's Crush hits Adair Park "
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Article

Tuesday March 3, 2015 04:00 am EST
Annual Art Auction to kick off long-term, creative vision for new venue | more...
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  string(2925) "Currently the largest of its kind in Atlanta, the 16th Annual Art Papers Art Auction promises variety in more ways than one. Among the 241 participating contemporary artists, there are emerging and recognized talents, with both local and international origins, and work in a large array of media. The diversity of the auction provides a slew of fresh, new artworks for practiced collectors, but also a range of prices for those new to the process.

"We're working with young artists, we're working with established artists, again, across media, local to international, and so really it's kind of a microcosm of what's going on," says Saskia Benjamin, executive director of Art Papers.

For a nonprofit organization working to provide outlets for the discussion, documentation, and examination of contemporary art through a variety of programs (Art Papers magazine, the Art Papers Live lecture series, and a newly launched exhibitions program), the auction is a big deal — with big stakes. Although the auction is another forum for education and dialogue, it is also a fundraiser for the other Art Papers programing. And for the first time in a decade, the show is moving: from Mason Murer Fine Art to Westside's Bobo Intriguing Objects.

"At Mason Murer it was very, you know, a traditional white gallery box," Benjamin says. "Bobo has a very different feel: dark walls, beautiful hardwood floors, we'll have some chandeliers, it'll be just a bit more romantic, and a bit more cozy, than it's been in past years. We're excited to have the opportunity to try something a little different."

Several artists have long-standing relationships with Art Papers and return to the auction annually, but the organization also chooses to explore other avenues for obtaining work. The nonprofit partners with several organizations, including WonderRoot, MINT, and Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (MOCA GA), that offer prizes, awards, and residencies to artists during the year to find new talent to include in the auction. These groups provide input on who they feel are the "movers and shakers" of the contemporary art community. Recent MOCA GA Working Artist Project winner Sarah Emerson is one of the artists participating as a result.

The auction is split into two separate evenings, which provide inherently different experiences. Up first is the Collector's Preview, which offers a more intimate opportunity for viewers to experience the art and even purchase in advance.

At the Silent Auction and Party on the following evening, interaction with the art will be paired with a performance by DJ Tim DeGroot.

"The auction is a great way for people to get introduced to new artists or see some of their favorites, and that's really what we're trying to do; to put together a great event," Benjamin says. "It's almost really an exhibition more than anything — but if you want, you can leave with the work.""
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"We're working with young artists, we're working with established artists, again, across media, local to international, and so really it's kind of a microcosm of what's going on," says Saskia Benjamin, executive director of [http://www.artpapers.org/auction/info.html|Art Papers].

For a nonprofit organization working to provide outlets for the discussion, documentation, and examination of contemporary art through a variety of programs (''Art Papers'' magazine, the Art Papers Live lecture series, and a newly launched exhibitions program), the auction is a big deal — with big stakes. Although the auction is another forum for education and dialogue, it is also a fundraiser for the other Art Papers programing. And for the first time in a decade, the show is moving: from Mason Murer Fine Art to Westside's Bobo Intriguing Objects.

"At Mason Murer it was very, you know, a traditional white gallery box," Benjamin says. "[[Bobo] has a very different feel: dark walls, beautiful hardwood floors, we'll have some chandeliers, it'll be just a bit more romantic, [[and] a bit more cozy, than it's been in past years. We're excited to have the opportunity to try something a little different."

Several artists have long-standing relationships with Art Papers and return to the auction annually, but the organization also chooses to explore other avenues for obtaining work. The nonprofit partners with several organizations, including WonderRoot, MINT, and Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (MOCA GA), that offer prizes, awards, and residencies to artists during the year to find new talent to include in the auction. These groups provide input on who they feel are the "movers and shakers" of the contemporary art community. Recent [http://clatl.com/freshloaf/archives/2014/12/03/moca-ga-receives-major-nea-grant|MOCA GA Working Artist Project winner] Sarah Emerson is one of the artists participating as a result.

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At the Silent Auction and Party on the following evening, interaction with the art will be paired with a performance by DJ Tim DeGroot.

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  string(3228) "    Executive Director Saskia Benjamin on the annual auction's switch to the Westside   2015-02-19T09:00:00+00:00 Art Papers on the move ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Kate Douds 13167192 2015-02-19T09:00:00+00:00  Currently the largest of its kind in Atlanta, the 16th Annual Art Papers Art Auction promises variety in more ways than one. Among the 241 participating contemporary artists, there are emerging and recognized talents, with both local and international origins, and work in a large array of media. The diversity of the auction provides a slew of fresh, new artworks for practiced collectors, but also a range of prices for those new to the process.

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Several artists have long-standing relationships with Art Papers and return to the auction annually, but the organization also chooses to explore other avenues for obtaining work. The nonprofit partners with several organizations, including WonderRoot, MINT, and Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (MOCA GA), that offer prizes, awards, and residencies to artists during the year to find new talent to include in the auction. These groups provide input on who they feel are the "movers and shakers" of the contemporary art community. Recent MOCA GA Working Artist Project winner Sarah Emerson is one of the artists participating as a result.

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Article

Thursday February 19, 2015 04:00 am EST
Executive Director Saskia Benjamin on the annual auction's switch to the Westside | more...
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  string(4624) "The shelter located at Peachtree and Pine streets is no stranger to the media. Creative Loafing has reported on everything from eviction proceedings to water bill crises during the homeless shelter's complicated relationship with the city. What many Atlanta residents may not be aware of among all the politics, however, is its penchant for the arts.

Toward the end of 2014 Peachtree-Pine's gallery — that's right, gallery — opened an exhibition of photography by Brad Carrington. A Walk Through Atlanta Peachtree-Pine features photographs of the physical space of the shelter, such as rows of bunk beds and expansive windows, but also portraits of residents. Shot on film with Carrington's 35-millimeter camera, the black and white portraits were done on a purely volunteer basis. Residents were given copies of their portraits at the end of the project.

"You never know how this sort of thing is going to turn out," Carrington says. "I saw a mix of behavior. Some residents smiled, some didn't, but all of them photographed so well."

Carrington, whose full-time job is in real estate, adds that he did not start taking photos with an exhibition in mind; in fact, he initially contacted the shelter because he lived in the area and wanted to know if the stories about eviction were true. "I had no intention of this sort of thing. That was all Anita Beaty," says Carrington of being coaxed by the executive director of the Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless — the agency that runs the shelter. "She invited me to put some photographs up."

The exhibition in the gallery space owned by Peachtree-Pine is a partnership pairing similar photographs taken by students at the Savannah College of Art and Design under the tutelage of Sandra-Lee Phipps. Phipps, a professor of photography at SCAD is known for her work with the band R.E.M. and the art for their album Murmur. As for her students' coverage of the shelter, the subjects range from hands playing piano to head shots — but all maintain an unwavering focus on the actual residents of the shelter.

"What Brad sees, particularly in the portraits, is just wonderful because we get so much criticism from people who haven't even seen the place, and all we want is for people to see it," Beaty says. "The gallery is the lens through which people can stand to see what homelessness is like. It sort of translates it into images that people can see before they actually touch it. It is important to me that the image is real and authentic."

Beaty says she's been fighting at the front lines both politically and creatively. The Peachtree-Pine gallery is not new, though; it's wavered in its purpose and realities. The space consistently changed, going through a handful of transformations of use before its current identity was pinpointed.

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An artist herself, Beaty admits that her personal enjoyment of the project may have contributed to its actualization. "One day I found a homeless man who was an artist as well, and we pushed our easels up together at the front of the space, and people started watching us paint and draw," she says. "I thought, this is the organic part. Just open the door for people."

Beaty says artists always seek them out, not the other way around. Take Tom Player, for example. Next to work in the space professionally, Player will soon begin to work on a commissioned sculpture of St. Martin and the beggar. According to Beaty, Player hopes to find models from the residents to help his work.

The shelter, which also provides services such as case managers, identification replacement, transportation assistance, GED support, and recovery meetings, acts as an inclusive community for residents.

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Beaty says artists always seek them out, not the other way around. Take Tom Player, for example. Next to work in the space professionally, Player will soon begin to work on a commissioned sculpture of St. Martin and the beggar. According to Beaty, Player hopes to find models from the residents to help his work.

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  string(4952) "    Photography exhibition focuses on spaces and residents of Downtown shelter   2015-02-16T09:00:00+00:00 Taking "A Walk Through Peachtree-Pine" ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Kate Douds 13167192 2015-02-16T09:00:00+00:00  The shelter located at Peachtree and Pine streets is no stranger to the media. Creative Loafing has reported on everything from eviction proceedings to water bill crises during the homeless shelter's complicated relationship with the city. What many Atlanta residents may not be aware of among all the politics, however, is its penchant for the arts.

Toward the end of 2014 Peachtree-Pine's gallery — that's right, gallery — opened an exhibition of photography by Brad Carrington. A Walk Through Atlanta Peachtree-Pine features photographs of the physical space of the shelter, such as rows of bunk beds and expansive windows, but also portraits of residents. Shot on film with Carrington's 35-millimeter camera, the black and white portraits were done on a purely volunteer basis. Residents were given copies of their portraits at the end of the project.

"You never know how this sort of thing is going to turn out," Carrington says. "I saw a mix of behavior. Some residents smiled, some didn't, but all of them photographed so well."

Carrington, whose full-time job is in real estate, adds that he did not start taking photos with an exhibition in mind; in fact, he initially contacted the shelter because he lived in the area and wanted to know if the stories about eviction were true. "I had no intention of this sort of thing. That was all Anita Beaty," says Carrington of being coaxed by the executive director of the Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless — the agency that runs the shelter. "She invited me to put some photographs up."

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"What Brad sees, particularly in the portraits, is just wonderful because we get so much criticism from people who haven't even seen the place, and all we want is for people to see it," Beaty says. "The gallery is the lens through which people can stand to see what homelessness is like. It sort of translates it into images that people can see before they actually touch it. It is important to me that the image is real and authentic."

Beaty says she's been fighting at the front lines both politically and creatively. The Peachtree-Pine gallery is not new, though; it's wavered in its purpose and realities. The space consistently changed, going through a handful of transformations of use before its current identity was pinpointed.

"We'd had artists occupying spaces in the back for many years," Beaty says. "Artists would come and go, and then it would change, and it would be another group, and they would come and go. Finally about two years ago we decided to ratchet it sort of down and, in the process, redo the space and re-intend what we want to do with the space. The goal was to integrate our resident artist program with outside artists, who were already there because they don't have a place to paint."

An artist herself, Beaty admits that her personal enjoyment of the project may have contributed to its actualization. "One day I found a homeless man who was an artist as well, and we pushed our easels up together at the front of the space, and people started watching us paint and draw," she says. "I thought, this is the organic part. Just open the door for people."

Beaty says artists always seek them out, not the other way around. Take Tom Player, for example. Next to work in the space professionally, Player will soon begin to work on a commissioned sculpture of St. Martin and the beggar. According to Beaty, Player hopes to find models from the residents to help his work.

The shelter, which also provides services such as case managers, identification replacement, transportation assistance, GED support, and recovery meetings, acts as an inclusive community for residents.

With the help of a former city housing commissioner and longtime volunteer, Carl Hartrampf, Peachtree-Pine has even created a colorfully designed urban garden on the roof of the building. Beaty hopes that people are aware that it is much more than a bed to sleep on.

"You need to be physically healthy, but also be spiritually and psychologically healthy," Beaty says. "The soul and the spirit need creative expression."             13081889 13535067                          Taking "A Walk Through Peachtree-Pine" "
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Monday February 16, 2015 04:00 am EST
Photography exhibition focuses on spaces and residents of Downtown shelter | more...
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  string(3382) "An international arts organization, RAW: natural born artists began a decade ago in Los Angeles to support artists and provide them with creative resources, and now it operates in over 50 cities around the world. This month RAW Atlanta presents a new wave of talent at its 2015 showcase, PRESENT, now in its fourth season. Showcase director Dayna Melton is at the helm of PRESENT for the first year, bringing together an event full of mixed-genre performances, music and art with over 30 artists. The showcase also includes a vendor area, fashion show, makeup and hair models and a pop-up gallery, hosted by actor Christopher Martin.

Here, Melton talks to Creative Loafing about her first ATL showcase, growing RAW in the Southeast, and highlights from the forthcoming event.

This is your first year as showcase director of RAW Atlanta. Tell me a bit more about putting this year's showcase together and what drew you to the organization.

I also currently produce RAW shows in Columbus, Ohio, and last year I was in charge of Indianapolis, Ind. This year I got to switch over to Atlanta, which I was really excited about since Atlanta is my hometown. Before I moved to California, I was very active in the Atlanta arts community. So far it has been amazing putting it together, and I have a wider appreciation for all the artistic genres that cultivate in Atlanta. There is so much talent in this upcoming showcase!

What originally drew me to the organization was my involvement as a vendor. When I moved to California, I was looking for some outlets for [my company Foxboxes] to get more rooted in the creative scene in Los Angeles so I joined the RAW Orange County showcase. Shortly after that I saw RAW was hiring for a director position and I applied, and I have now been with RAW for over a year. I think the platform that RAW provides artists, not only in Atlanta but also all over, is fantastic.

RAW Atlanta is now in its fourth season. How has the showcase grown over the years?

Over the years the showcase has grown not only in the number of submissions and people that are taking advantage of the artist perks that RAW has to offer, but also in the number of artists we showcase per show. The overall production of the events has become much more elaborate as well.

The showcase involves multi-genre artists. How did you work with them to make a cohesive event?

Well, it is a lot of work, I'll tell you that! Daily, I am working with anywhere from 30 to 40 artists just in Atlanta. To ensure that each artist has a successful show, I am very engaged with everyone and I make sure to handle each person's needs individually because everyone has a different creative vision for their show. Every artist in the show is pretty much given 100 percent creative control on their showcase, with very limited exceptions.

What artists are you really excited about?

Some artists I'm really excited about are the print and illustration work of Mo' Safavynia, the detailed graphic work of Jeramy Muxworthy, the black and white ghostly photography of SCAD student Anissa Yarbrough, and the one-woman show (hair stylist, designer, and makeup artist) that is Deyah Cantrell.

After this first show, RAW Atlanta will continue to host bi-monthly showcases and my hope is that we will grow to be one of the largest and most impactful showcases in the U.S.!"
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Here, Melton talks to ''Creative Loafing'' about her first ATL showcase, growing RAW in the Southeast, and highlights from the forthcoming event.

__This is your first year as showcase director of RAW Atlanta. Tell me a bit more about putting this year's showcase together and what drew you to the organization.__

I also currently produce [[RAW] shows in Columbus, Ohio, and last year I was in charge of Indianapolis, Ind. This year I got to switch over to Atlanta, which I was really excited about since Atlanta is my hometown. Before I moved to California, I was very active in the Atlanta arts community. So far it has been amazing putting it together, and I have a wider appreciation for all the artistic genres that cultivate in Atlanta. There is so much talent in this upcoming showcase!

What originally drew me to the organization was my involvement as a vendor. When I moved to California, I was looking for some outlets for [my company [http://shopfoxboxes.com/|Foxboxes]] to get more rooted in the creative scene in Los Angeles so I joined the RAW Orange County showcase. Shortly after that I saw RAW was hiring for a director position and I applied, and I have now been with RAW for over a year. I think the platform that RAW provides artists, not only in Atlanta but also all over, is fantastic.

__''RAW'' Atlanta is now in its fourth season. How has the showcase grown over the years?__

Over the years the showcase has grown not only in the number of submissions and people that are taking advantage of the artist perks that RAW has to offer, but also in the number of artists we showcase per show. The overall production of the events has become much more elaborate as well.

__The showcase involves multi-genre artists. How did you work with them to make a cohesive event?__

Well, it is a lot of work, I'll tell you that! Daily, I am working with anywhere [[from 30 to 40] artists just in Atlanta. To ensure that each artist has a successful show, I am very engaged with everyone and I make sure to handle each person's needs individually because everyone has a different creative vision for their show. Every artist in the show is pretty much given 100 percent creative control on their showcase, with very limited exceptions.

__What artists are you really excited about?__

Some artists [[I'm really excited about] are the print and illustration work of [https://www.mosafavynia.com|Mo' Safavynia], the detailed graphic work of [http://www.muxworrrthy.com/|Jeramy Muxworthy], the black and white ghostly photography of SCAD student [http://www.rawartists.org/anissay|Anissa Yarbrough], and the one-woman show (hair stylist, designer, and makeup artist) that is [http://www.rawartists.org/deyahb|Deyah Cantrell].

After this first show, RAW Atlanta will continue to host bi-monthly showcases and my hope is that we will grow to be one of the largest and most impactful showcases in the U.S.!"
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  string(3701) "    Showcase director Dayna Melton on planning, and her artists to watch   2015-02-11T09:00:00+00:00 RAW Atlanta takes over Terminal West ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-02-11T09:00:00+00:00  An international arts organization, RAW: natural born artists began a decade ago in Los Angeles to support artists and provide them with creative resources, and now it operates in over 50 cities around the world. This month RAW Atlanta presents a new wave of talent at its 2015 showcase, PRESENT, now in its fourth season. Showcase director Dayna Melton is at the helm of PRESENT for the first year, bringing together an event full of mixed-genre performances, music and art with over 30 artists. The showcase also includes a vendor area, fashion show, makeup and hair models and a pop-up gallery, hosted by actor Christopher Martin.

Here, Melton talks to Creative Loafing about her first ATL showcase, growing RAW in the Southeast, and highlights from the forthcoming event.

This is your first year as showcase director of RAW Atlanta. Tell me a bit more about putting this year's showcase together and what drew you to the organization.

I also currently produce RAW shows in Columbus, Ohio, and last year I was in charge of Indianapolis, Ind. This year I got to switch over to Atlanta, which I was really excited about since Atlanta is my hometown. Before I moved to California, I was very active in the Atlanta arts community. So far it has been amazing putting it together, and I have a wider appreciation for all the artistic genres that cultivate in Atlanta. There is so much talent in this upcoming showcase!

What originally drew me to the organization was my involvement as a vendor. When I moved to California, I was looking for some outlets for [my company Foxboxes] to get more rooted in the creative scene in Los Angeles so I joined the RAW Orange County showcase. Shortly after that I saw RAW was hiring for a director position and I applied, and I have now been with RAW for over a year. I think the platform that RAW provides artists, not only in Atlanta but also all over, is fantastic.

RAW Atlanta is now in its fourth season. How has the showcase grown over the years?

Over the years the showcase has grown not only in the number of submissions and people that are taking advantage of the artist perks that RAW has to offer, but also in the number of artists we showcase per show. The overall production of the events has become much more elaborate as well.

The showcase involves multi-genre artists. How did you work with them to make a cohesive event?

Well, it is a lot of work, I'll tell you that! Daily, I am working with anywhere from 30 to 40 artists just in Atlanta. To ensure that each artist has a successful show, I am very engaged with everyone and I make sure to handle each person's needs individually because everyone has a different creative vision for their show. Every artist in the show is pretty much given 100 percent creative control on their showcase, with very limited exceptions.

What artists are you really excited about?

Some artists I'm really excited about are the print and illustration work of Mo' Safavynia, the detailed graphic work of Jeramy Muxworthy, the black and white ghostly photography of SCAD student Anissa Yarbrough, and the one-woman show (hair stylist, designer, and makeup artist) that is Deyah Cantrell.

After this first show, RAW Atlanta will continue to host bi-monthly showcases and my hope is that we will grow to be one of the largest and most impactful showcases in the U.S.!             13081830 13354202                          RAW Atlanta takes over Terminal West "
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Wednesday February 11, 2015 04:00 am EST
Showcase director Dayna Melton on planning, and her artists to watch | more...
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  string(4001) "For Pratfall Tramps the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center's (ACAC) first exhibition of 2015, Curator Rachel Reese had a particular goal in mind. "It was very important that this exhibition was all-female," she says. "The history of women in comedy runs parallel to the history of women in various genres and fields in Western society, including visual art."

With that in mind, Pratfall Tramps, highlights humor in art through our varied interactions with different mediums. "Comedy is collective, a code of behavior; culture and history play a role in and even create the systems that inform these comedic codes," Reese says. "What makes you laugh, versus what makes a group collectively laugh? What constitutes humor? Studying humor is a curious thing."

The exhibition includes works from artists working in different mediums such as Tammy Rae Carland, Sara Greenberger Rafferty, Mary Reid Kelley, and Jamie Isenstein. Isentein's works often blurs the line between sculpture and performance and she has shown her art around the country and across Europe and Asia. For one of the live performances in Pratfall Tramps, Isenstein utilizes her body, more specifically her arm, to create a form of paradox on "Magic Lamp," one of her nine pieces in the exhibition.

Creative Loafing spoke to Isenstein about using deceit in her work, interacting with viewers and that time Will Ferrell tried to get a reaction out of her.

Tell me a bit about your ACAC sculpture/performance, "Magic Lamp." It reminds me of another work of yours, "Snuffer," where you employed the use of a limb as well.

In both "Magic Lamp" and "Snuffer," you see my arm and hand, and both depict light being sustained in different ways. "Magic Lamp" is one of my inhabited sculptures so the "arm" of the lamp is actually my arm emerging from the back plate. I am holding a light bulb that is lit despite that there are no visible electric cords. I will actually be inhabiting this work at ACAC during the opening weekend. When I am not there a tiny "Will Return" sign will predict the next time I will lend my arm to the work.

I feel like most of your work is based on deceit and absurdity, which can often be humorous.

I do think a lot about deceit in my work. I am fascinated by our attempts at understanding what is true and natural versus what is artifice. We are surrounded by deception in our culture as others use any means possible to try to convince us to buy or vote for what they offer. We are so used to Adobe Photoshop now that we just assume every printed image has been doctored. We also are now generally sophisticated enough to realize that even photographs straight from a camera don't always tell the truth. I like to create artworks that play with the understanding that "truth" is relative. Often the result is absurd and funny. For all my works that are funny though there is also an underlying element of sadness as well.

What are some things you look for or listen to while you stand in, if any?

I cannot see if anyone is looking at me when I am in my work but after a while I start to sense when people are near me. If they are close I can feel their breath or the movement of air if they leave quickly. I try not to react to their presence and I often have no idea how they are reacting to mine. For one work I had my hand in a frame in a wall at MoMA PS1 in New York for six months. While inhabiting that work I could hear people talking if they were close enough. After a while I started to keep a tally of how many times I heard people wonder if my hand was made of wax or mechanical, etc.

Have you ever had a memorable pratfall?

Not really unfortunately! I did have an experience while inhabiting "Magic Lamp" at an art fair in 2005 that might come close. Someone poured a cup of ice on my arm to see how I would react. I didn't! But no one should try this again! I was later told it was the comedian Will Ferrell. I guess that's my equivalent of having a pie thrown in my face!"
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  string(4095) "For ''[http://www.thecontemporary.org/exhibitions/pratfall-tramps/|Pratfall Tramps]'' the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center's (ACAC) first exhibition of 2015, Curator Rachel Reese had a particular goal in mind. "It was very important that this exhibition was all-female," she says. "The history of women in comedy runs parallel to the history of women in various genres and fields in Western society, including visual art."

With that in mind, ''Pratfall Tramps'', highlights humor in art through our varied interactions with different mediums. "Comedy is collective, a code of behavior; culture and history play a role in and even create the systems that inform these comedic codes," Reese says. "What makes you laugh, versus what makes a group collectively laugh? What constitutes humor? Studying humor is a curious thing."

The exhibition includes works from artists working in different mediums such as Tammy Rae Carland, Sara Greenberger Rafferty, Mary Reid Kelley, and Jamie Isenstein. Isentein's works often blurs the line between sculpture and performance and she has shown her art around the country and across Europe and Asia. For one of the live performances in ''Pratfall Tramps'', Isenstein utilizes her body, more specifically her arm, to create a form of paradox on "Magic Lamp," one of her nine pieces in the exhibition.

''Creative Loafing'' spoke to Isenstein about using deceit in her work, interacting with viewers and that time Will Ferrell tried to get a reaction out of her.

__Tell me a bit about your ACAC sculpture/performance, "Magic Lamp." It reminds me of another work of yours, "Snuffer," where you employed the use of a limb as well.__

In both "Magic Lamp" and "Snuffer," you see my arm and hand, and both depict light being sustained in different ways. "Magic Lamp" is one of my inhabited sculptures so the "arm" of the lamp is actually my arm emerging from the back plate. I am holding a light bulb that is lit despite that there are no visible electric cords. I will actually be inhabiting this work at ACAC during the opening weekend. When I am not there a tiny "Will Return" sign will predict the next time I will lend my arm to the work.

__I feel like most of your work is based on deceit and absurdity, which can often be humorous.__

I do think a lot about deceit in my work. I am fascinated by our attempts at understanding what is true and natural versus what is artifice. We are surrounded by deception in our culture as others use any means possible to try to convince us to buy or vote for what they offer. We are so used to Adobe Photoshop now that we just assume every printed image has been doctored. We also are now generally sophisticated enough to realize that even photographs straight from a camera don't always tell the truth. I like to create artworks that play with the understanding that "truth" is relative. Often the result is absurd and funny. For all my works that are funny though there is also an underlying element of sadness as well.

__What are some things you look for or listen to while you stand in, if any?__

I cannot see if anyone is looking at me when I am in my work but after a while I start to sense when people are near me. If they are close I can feel their breath or the movement of air if they leave quickly. I try not to react to their presence and I often have no idea how they are reacting to mine. For one work I had my hand in a frame in a wall at MoMA PS1 in New York for six months. While inhabiting that work I could hear people talking if they were close enough. After a while I started to keep a tally of how many times I heard people wonder if my hand was made of wax or mechanical, etc.

__Have you ever had a memorable pratfall?__

Not really unfortunately! I did have an experience while inhabiting "Magic Lamp" at an art fair in 2005 that might come close. Someone poured a cup of ice on my arm to see how I would react. I didn't! But no one should try this again! I was later told it was the comedian Will Ferrell. I guess that's my equivalent of having a pie thrown in my face!"
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  string(4322) "    Artist Jamie Isenstein on the all-female exhibition, and being heckled by Will Ferrell   2015-02-05T09:00:00+00:00 "Tramps" at the Contemporary ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-02-05T09:00:00+00:00  For Pratfall Tramps the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center's (ACAC) first exhibition of 2015, Curator Rachel Reese had a particular goal in mind. "It was very important that this exhibition was all-female," she says. "The history of women in comedy runs parallel to the history of women in various genres and fields in Western society, including visual art."

With that in mind, Pratfall Tramps, highlights humor in art through our varied interactions with different mediums. "Comedy is collective, a code of behavior; culture and history play a role in and even create the systems that inform these comedic codes," Reese says. "What makes you laugh, versus what makes a group collectively laugh? What constitutes humor? Studying humor is a curious thing."

The exhibition includes works from artists working in different mediums such as Tammy Rae Carland, Sara Greenberger Rafferty, Mary Reid Kelley, and Jamie Isenstein. Isentein's works often blurs the line between sculpture and performance and she has shown her art around the country and across Europe and Asia. For one of the live performances in Pratfall Tramps, Isenstein utilizes her body, more specifically her arm, to create a form of paradox on "Magic Lamp," one of her nine pieces in the exhibition.

Creative Loafing spoke to Isenstein about using deceit in her work, interacting with viewers and that time Will Ferrell tried to get a reaction out of her.

Tell me a bit about your ACAC sculpture/performance, "Magic Lamp." It reminds me of another work of yours, "Snuffer," where you employed the use of a limb as well.

In both "Magic Lamp" and "Snuffer," you see my arm and hand, and both depict light being sustained in different ways. "Magic Lamp" is one of my inhabited sculptures so the "arm" of the lamp is actually my arm emerging from the back plate. I am holding a light bulb that is lit despite that there are no visible electric cords. I will actually be inhabiting this work at ACAC during the opening weekend. When I am not there a tiny "Will Return" sign will predict the next time I will lend my arm to the work.

I feel like most of your work is based on deceit and absurdity, which can often be humorous.

I do think a lot about deceit in my work. I am fascinated by our attempts at understanding what is true and natural versus what is artifice. We are surrounded by deception in our culture as others use any means possible to try to convince us to buy or vote for what they offer. We are so used to Adobe Photoshop now that we just assume every printed image has been doctored. We also are now generally sophisticated enough to realize that even photographs straight from a camera don't always tell the truth. I like to create artworks that play with the understanding that "truth" is relative. Often the result is absurd and funny. For all my works that are funny though there is also an underlying element of sadness as well.

What are some things you look for or listen to while you stand in, if any?

I cannot see if anyone is looking at me when I am in my work but after a while I start to sense when people are near me. If they are close I can feel their breath or the movement of air if they leave quickly. I try not to react to their presence and I often have no idea how they are reacting to mine. For one work I had my hand in a frame in a wall at MoMA PS1 in New York for six months. While inhabiting that work I could hear people talking if they were close enough. After a while I started to keep a tally of how many times I heard people wonder if my hand was made of wax or mechanical, etc.

Have you ever had a memorable pratfall?

Not really unfortunately! I did have an experience while inhabiting "Magic Lamp" at an art fair in 2005 that might come close. Someone poured a cup of ice on my arm to see how I would react. I didn't! But no one should try this again! I was later told it was the comedian Will Ferrell. I guess that's my equivalent of having a pie thrown in my face!             13081745 13334098                          "Tramps" at the Contemporary "
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Thursday February 5, 2015 04:00 am EST
Artist Jamie Isenstein on the all-female exhibition, and being heckled by Will Ferrell | more...
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  string(5195) "Beth Lilly has always been a storyteller. As a photographer, she has created several concept-driven projects to explore her own life and the lives of others. For her new exhibition, A Moving Image of Eternity, Lilly explores the lives of commuters on Interstates in Atlanta and around the southeast.

"I've always joked that London has the Thames, Paris has the Seine, and Atlanta has the Downtown Connector," she says. "Which sounds so hopelessly functional and boring, but the reality is that each vehicle holds occupants, and each little life is a story that has a past and a future and is connected to thousands of other lives, each with a future and a past."

Currently the new executive director of the Atlanta Photography Group, Lilly has shown her work around the country, has published one book, The Oracle @ WiFi, and has a forthcoming volume based her newly restaged every single one of these stories is true.

Lilly spoke to Creative Loafing about those moments she spent photographing by the side of the road, her motion-imaging techniques, and her love of driving.

What does the title of the exhibition, Moving Image of Eternity, mean to you?

You know, we experience time in the present — the now — as a singular moment, and each moment arises in succession like the frame of a film. I picture a vast river of moments that just keeps flowing for eternity — it is unstoppable. Classically, most photographs use a quick shutter speed that freezes action. A photograph can seem to freeze time and be a record of what is fleeting and unrepeatable. But when you leave the shutter open, all of those moments accumulate on the sensor and it becomes just an abstract blur of color and light. And so you see the flow itself instead of a singular particular moment.

How did you come up with the concept for the show?

I love to drive; I love everything about driving. And while I'm driving, I'm thinking. And I just started thinking that being in a car, speeding down the Interstate, was the perfect metaphor for how we experience time. The car interior feels stationary. Like my self, who I am, it feels constant, but outside my window, everything is speeding by — like my experiences. But I'd always wanted to photograph on the Interstate. It's a weird place. We're a bunch of strangers, all in our own little world, but sharing this narrow strip of space. Rich people, poor people, all going somewhere.

What was your creative process behind putting the show together?

Like a job, I went out several days each week anywhere from two hours to eight hours at a stretch. I tried photographing in every way imaginable. I would drive and shoot in the mornings; and then I'd try evenings, then at night. One day, I might focus on Spaghetti Junction; another day, I might keep riding through tunnels. When I changed the shutter speed, made it slow so the backgrounds blurred, that's when it really became exciting for me. I knew I had found a way to show what I was feeling. Another big evolution was when I tried printing on the kozo paper. I used that paper before, for an earlier series, and the paper gave the black-and-white images the feeling of lightness, that ethereal quality.

Tell me about using motion on your photographs. Have you done this before?

I've always felt blurred movement in photographs was magical. It just looks lovely, liked the blurred wings of birds or the look of water. And it speaks to me about the fleeting nature of life. In the beginning of photography, the shutter speeds were so slow that people just weren't captured — they moved too fast to register on the film. There's a famous image of a city deserted except for one man who paused to get his shoes shined. In other early photos, a figure that is only partially solid and an arm or a leg disappears from rapid motion. It fascinated me that we could just "disappear." I never used motion on purpose before. If it happened by chance, and it worked for that image. But this was the first time I set out to really use this phenomenon of photography.

For most of the show, all of the images were taken by me from inside the car. I know, don't be alarmed. I put the camera on a tripod, and using a remote cord, I was able to keep my eyes and attention on the road while I photographed. This show was almost entirely shot on Atlanta metro area Interstates. I took a couple road trips to New Orleans and back. I would look for cars with the window down or with interesting people and try to overtake them. Once I'd caught up, I sort of paced them, going at the same speed so the occupants would be sharp but the background blurred. That was the hardest part because I kind of felt like a stalker. My house is near an Interstate overpass, so I've been photographing people in their cars from that bridge for years. I knew I wanted to do something with them but wasn't sure what.

Did you ever try to guess what people were actually thinking as you watched them?

Absolutely — my whole life. I think that is really where this whole project started. Watching other people in cars and wondering what their lives were like, what were they thinking? What was their story?"
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  string(5468) "[http://www.bethlilly.com/|Beth Lilly] has always been a storyteller. As a photographer, she has created several concept-driven projects to explore her own life and the lives of others. For her new exhibition, ''[http://www.bethlilly.com/news/|A Moving Image of Eternity]'', Lilly explores the lives of commuters on Interstates in Atlanta and around the southeast.

"I've always joked that London has the Thames, Paris has the Seine, and Atlanta has the Downtown Connector," she says. "Which sounds so hopelessly functional and boring, but the reality is that each vehicle holds occupants, and each little life is a story that has a past and a future and is connected to thousands of other lives, each with a future and a past."

Currently the new executive director of the Atlanta Photography Group, Lilly has shown her work around the country, has published one book, ''[http://www.amazon.com/The-Oracle-WiFi-Katherine-Ware/dp/3868282920/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1346278490&sr=8-4&keywords=beth lilly|The Oracle @ WiFi]'', and has a forthcoming volume based her newly restaged ''[http://www.bethlilly.com/port/esootsit/|every single one of these stories is true]''.

Lilly spoke to ''Creative Loafing'' about those moments she spent photographing by the side of the road, her motion-imaging techniques, and her love of driving.

__What does the title of the exhibition, ''Moving Image of Eternity'', mean to you?__

You know, we experience time in the present — the now — as a singular moment, and each moment arises in succession like the frame of a film. I picture a vast river of moments that just keeps flowing for eternity — it is unstoppable. Classically, most photographs use a quick shutter speed that freezes action. A photograph can seem to freeze time and be a record of what is fleeting and unrepeatable. But when you leave the shutter open, all of those moments accumulate on the sensor and it becomes just an abstract blur of color and light. And so you see the flow itself instead of a singular particular moment.

__How did you come up with the concept for the show?__

I love to drive; I love everything about driving. And while I'm driving, I'm thinking. And I just started thinking that being in a car, speeding down the Interstate, was the perfect metaphor for how we experience time. The car interior feels stationary. Like my self, who I am, it feels constant, but outside my window, everything is speeding by — like my experiences. But I'd always wanted to photograph on the Interstate. It's a weird place. We're a bunch of strangers, all in our own little world, but sharing this narrow strip of space. Rich people, poor people, all going somewhere.

__What was your creative process behind putting the show together?__

Like a job, I went out several days each week anywhere from two hours to eight hours at a stretch. I tried photographing in every way imaginable. I would drive and shoot in the mornings; and then I'd try evenings, then at night. One day, I might focus on Spaghetti Junction; another day, I might keep riding through tunnels. When I changed the shutter speed, made it slow so the backgrounds blurred, that's when it really became exciting for me. I knew I had found a way to show what I was feeling. Another big evolution was when I tried printing on the kozo paper. I used that paper before, for an earlier series, and the paper gave the black-and-white images the feeling of lightness, that ethereal quality.

__Tell me about using motion on your photographs. Have you done this before?__

I've always felt blurred movement in photographs was magical. It just looks lovely, liked the blurred wings of birds or the look of water. And it speaks to me about the fleeting nature of life. In the beginning of photography, the shutter speeds were so slow that people just weren't captured — they moved too fast to register on the film. There's a famous image of a city deserted except for one man who paused to get his shoes shined. In other early photos, a figure that is only partially solid and an arm or a leg disappears from rapid motion. It fascinated me that we could just "disappear." I never used motion on purpose before. If it happened by chance, and it worked for that image. But this was the first time I set out to really use this phenomenon of photography.

For most of the show, all of the images were taken by me from inside the car. I know, don't be alarmed. I put the camera on a tripod, and using a remote cord, I was able to keep my eyes and attention on the road while I photographed. This show was almost entirely shot on Atlanta metro area Interstates. I took a couple road trips to New Orleans and back. I would look for cars with the window down or with interesting people and try to overtake them. Once I'd caught up, I sort of paced them, going at the same speed so the occupants would be sharp but the background blurred. That was the hardest part because I kind of felt like a stalker. My house is near an Interstate overpass, so I've been photographing people in their cars from that bridge for years. I knew I wanted to do something with them but wasn't sure what.

__Did you ever try to guess what people were actually thinking as you watched them?__

Absolutely — my whole life. I think that is really where this whole project started. Watching other people in cars and wondering what their lives were like, what were they thinking? What was their story?"
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  string(5543) "    Photographer combines love of driving and blurring techniques in new exhibition   2015-01-20T09:00:00+00:00 Beth Lilly talks "A Moving Image of Eternity" ben.eason@creativeloafing.com Ben Eason Muriel Vega 10135279 2015-01-20T09:00:00+00:00  Beth Lilly has always been a storyteller. As a photographer, she has created several concept-driven projects to explore her own life and the lives of others. For her new exhibition, A Moving Image of Eternity, Lilly explores the lives of commuters on Interstates in Atlanta and around the southeast.

"I've always joked that London has the Thames, Paris has the Seine, and Atlanta has the Downtown Connector," she says. "Which sounds so hopelessly functional and boring, but the reality is that each vehicle holds occupants, and each little life is a story that has a past and a future and is connected to thousands of other lives, each with a future and a past."

Currently the new executive director of the Atlanta Photography Group, Lilly has shown her work around the country, has published one book, The Oracle @ WiFi, and has a forthcoming volume based her newly restaged every single one of these stories is true.

Lilly spoke to Creative Loafing about those moments she spent photographing by the side of the road, her motion-imaging techniques, and her love of driving.

What does the title of the exhibition, Moving Image of Eternity, mean to you?

You know, we experience time in the present — the now — as a singular moment, and each moment arises in succession like the frame of a film. I picture a vast river of moments that just keeps flowing for eternity — it is unstoppable. Classically, most photographs use a quick shutter speed that freezes action. A photograph can seem to freeze time and be a record of what is fleeting and unrepeatable. But when you leave the shutter open, all of those moments accumulate on the sensor and it becomes just an abstract blur of color and light. And so you see the flow itself instead of a singular particular moment.

How did you come up with the concept for the show?

I love to drive; I love everything about driving. And while I'm driving, I'm thinking. And I just started thinking that being in a car, speeding down the Interstate, was the perfect metaphor for how we experience time. The car interior feels stationary. Like my self, who I am, it feels constant, but outside my window, everything is speeding by — like my experiences. But I'd always wanted to photograph on the Interstate. It's a weird place. We're a bunch of strangers, all in our own little world, but sharing this narrow strip of space. Rich people, poor people, all going somewhere.

What was your creative process behind putting the show together?

Like a job, I went out several days each week anywhere from two hours to eight hours at a stretch. I tried photographing in every way imaginable. I would drive and shoot in the mornings; and then I'd try evenings, then at night. One day, I might focus on Spaghetti Junction; another day, I might keep riding through tunnels. When I changed the shutter speed, made it slow so the backgrounds blurred, that's when it really became exciting for me. I knew I had found a way to show what I was feeling. Another big evolution was when I tried printing on the kozo paper. I used that paper before, for an earlier series, and the paper gave the black-and-white images the feeling of lightness, that ethereal quality.

Tell me about using motion on your photographs. Have you done this before?

I've always felt blurred movement in photographs was magical. It just looks lovely, liked the blurred wings of birds or the look of water. And it speaks to me about the fleeting nature of life. In the beginning of photography, the shutter speeds were so slow that people just weren't captured — they moved too fast to register on the film. There's a famous image of a city deserted except for one man who paused to get his shoes shined. In other early photos, a figure that is only partially solid and an arm or a leg disappears from rapid motion. It fascinated me that we could just "disappear." I never used motion on purpose before. If it happened by chance, and it worked for that image. But this was the first time I set out to really use this phenomenon of photography.

For most of the show, all of the images were taken by me from inside the car. I know, don't be alarmed. I put the camera on a tripod, and using a remote cord, I was able to keep my eyes and attention on the road while I photographed. This show was almost entirely shot on Atlanta metro area Interstates. I took a couple road trips to New Orleans and back. I would look for cars with the window down or with interesting people and try to overtake them. Once I'd caught up, I sort of paced them, going at the same speed so the occupants would be sharp but the background blurred. That was the hardest part because I kind of felt like a stalker. My house is near an Interstate overpass, so I've been photographing people in their cars from that bridge for years. I knew I wanted to do something with them but wasn't sure what.

Did you ever try to guess what people were actually thinking as you watched them?

Absolutely — my whole life. I think that is really where this whole project started. Watching other people in cars and wondering what their lives were like, what were they thinking? What was their story?             13081562 13229802                          Beth Lilly talks "A Moving Image of Eternity" "
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Article

Tuesday January 20, 2015 04:00 am EST
Photographer combines love of driving and blurring techniques in new exhibition | more...