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From MTV to reality 

September 14 This week I'm sharing a feature on photographer Tabitha Soren, whose evocative fine art photography series spanning a decade of work opens at Jackson Fine Art this Friday. Soren's career has evolved quite a bit since she debuted as a reporter for MTV back in the early 90s, and today she uses photography to explore the gray areas of life.

I'm also highlighting a new arts initiative launching this week called NEXT Movement. Working in partnership with MARTA, local arts organization NEXT Atlanta will amplify local creatives and artists as they look at incidents of police brutality against people of color and explore ideas about what Atlanta looks like following the pandemic.


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Tabitha Soren in her studio.

Tabitha Soren at Jackson Fine Art

📷  This Friday evening, photographer Tabitha Soren’s solo exhibition, Relief, will open at Jackson Fine Art in Buckhead. Unlike any exhibition that has come before, the retrospective spans three collections and a decade of development and evolution in Soren's career.

Her works, which often exist within the gray areas of shared human experience, explore themes of tension and connection. Soren – who became a household name as an on-air reporter for MTV News in the 90s –  told me about her path, and shared her artistic motivations in the days leading up to opening night.

“I’m always trying to visualize a psychological state,” Soren said. “The connective tissue to the three bodies of work is a certain amount of anxiety, dread, and discomfort.” 

Read more about Tabitha Soren here.


➡ Also on Friday, Jackson Fine Art will display a selection of works from Christy Bush. The Buckhead gallery will host a book signing with Bush on Thurs., Sept. 29, during Atlanta Art Week.  
MARTA and NEXT Atlanta ask "What's Next?"

🚇  On Sept. 19, MARTA’s public art program Artbound and local arts collective NEXT Atlanta will launch a multi-platform arts and social action campaign called NEXT Movement. 

The project will bring together five of Atlanta’s most influential artists of color and art activists along with poets, musicians, and authors to explore the question of “Where do we go NEXT?” as a city and a community.

The first season of the NEXT Movement will highlight poet and author Jon Goode, musician CC Sunchild, cellist Okorie ‘OkCello’ Johnson, poet and author Carlos Andres Gomez, and visual artist Melissa A. Mitchell. Each artist has been commissioned to develop a piece of art or performance. 

This program will also feature leading Atlanta creatives as they respond to these issues and the role of art in the community.

This program will also feature leading Atlanta creatives as they respond to these issues and the role of art in the community. The list includes nationally renowned visual artist Charly Palme; rising star, curator, and visual artist Tracy Murrell; curator of African Art for the High Museum of Art Lauren Tate Baeza; CEO of The Integral Group and leading art patron Egbert Perry, and National Black Arts Executive Director Stephanie Owens.

The program will activate a variety of spaces with photo exhibits, performances, and filmed performances akin to NPR’s Tiny Desk concerts, aboard a decommissioned MARTA train, and an interactive artist salon at the High Museum of Art in November.

Riders will be 
able to witness a photo exhibit and poster series with powerful portraits and messages pulled from the featured artists' past commissions at MARTA stations across the city. 

Alex Waggoner in front of her Adair Park I mural

This Week in Art News

🏀  SCAD SERVE has unveiled their newest Paint Our Parks public arts initiative with a colorful mural on the basketball court in Adair Park. Painter, muralist, and SCAD SERVE Alumni Ambassador Alex Waggoner worked with a team of more than 100 SCAD artists and volunteers to bring this mural to fruition.  

Painter, muralist, and SCAD SERVE Alumni Ambassador Alex Waggoner worked with a team of more than 100 SCAD artists and volunteers to bring this mural to fruition. “I am constantly inspired by the SCAD community, their excitement about volunteering through SCAD SERVE, and their enthusiasm with every stroke of their brushes and rollers!" said Waggoner (pictured).

Local artist and activist Yehimi Cambrón has partnered with Atlanta Public School's Midtown Cluster to create an incredible collaborative mural designed to incorporate a series of hand artworks created by students from pre-K through 5th grade. Dedication ceremonies are currently scheduled for Sept. 15 and Sept. 20. 

✂️ Artist and fashion photographer Anderson Smith opens Gallery Anderson Smith on Sept. 16 in Buckhead Village. The gallery will soon join the ranks of the area’s burgeoning art and design scene. We featured Smith on the cover of Atlanta Intown in 2021.

🖼 Atlanta Art Week, a new initiative dedicated to showcasing the arts and culture of Georgia’s capital, will launch Sept. 29. Founded by Kendra Walker, Atlanta Art Week seeks to engage the city across a variety of platforms, including activations by more than 20 galleries, museums, institutions, artist, and nonprofit spaces. 

🔥 Atlanta’s annual showcase of Latine artistsNuestra Creación, returns to Mint Gallery for the entirety of Hispanic/Latin Heritage Month. Founded by local Salvadoran artist, Patricia Hernandez, and Mexican social media strategist, Diego Torres, the exhibition runs from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15. Hoping to amplify local Latine artists, this showcase will bring the work of 23 artists to the gallery and also raise money for El Refugio, an organization dedicated to helping the detainees at Stewart Detention Center and their loved ones. 

Art Happenings

🎥 After a two year hiatus, the Short Shorts film festival returns to Whitespace Gallery on Saturday, Sept. 17 at 7:30 p.m.

👏 Fusion 360: 101 - 3D printing and CNC toolpaths workshop at Decatur Makers on Sat., Sept. 17 from 10 - 11:30 a.m.

🖼 The Nature of Reality at Spalding Nix Fine Arts opens on Friday, Sept. 16 from 6 to 8 p.m. and Sat., Sept. 17 from noon - 4 p.m.

 Buckhead Fine Arts Festival returns with a two-day showcase of fine arts at the Buckhead Village District on Sat., Sept 17 from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., and Sun., Sept 18 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.  

 ELEVATE 2022: OPEN SPACES to take place on weekends from Fri., Sept. 16 through Sun., Oct. 9 at venues across Atlanta.

 Potter Masa Sasaki’s solo show opens at Signature Gallery on Sept. 17.

🇲🇽  Celebrate Latinx art at the second annual Placita Latina exhibition, at the Decatur Arts Alliance gallery Sept. 18 through Oct. 14.

📷  Swan Coach House Gallery presents Re: Focus on Thurs., Sept. 15 from 6 to 9 p.m. featuring works by Melissa Alexander, Stephanie Brown, Terra Coles, and Natrice Miller. It's curated by Dr. Fahamu Pecou (pictured).

🏮 The High Museum’s newest exhibition “Stephen Burks: Shelter in Place,” opens on Sept. 16.

Post of the Week

I was quite taken by this set of images from Burning Man by Atlanta photographer Christy Parry. 
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