creativity, culture, community
“With the help of more than 100 artists we are going to transform downtown into an interactive art experience,” states Camille Russell Love, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. “ELEVATE will encompass events and exhibits throughout downtown Atlanta from October 17-23, and everything is free and open to the public. There will be a wide variety of contemporary art including sculptures, installations and projections on buildings, and mobile art galleries. And performances will range from spoken word artists and dance, to daring aerial acts. I’d like to introduce you to four fantastic women who are part of this year’s ELEVATE.”
Romy Maloon is an installation fine artist working in mixed media. Her background in catering and event coordination, combined with her studies at the Ringling College of Art & Design, gives her a flair for the dramatic. Her projects are known for lavish and unusual details and Calibrate, her large-scale installation for ELEVATE, takes it to another level.
“My inspiration for this project is the color block calibration pattern on old TV sets,” explains Maloon. “It would come up to reset everyone’s color chart so we are looking at the same thing. My artwork is like a reset of how people view a vacant building and maybe we can imagine something new together.”
“I’m using thousands of colorful synthetic flowers because they are both relatable and tactile,” Maloon continues. “My project is a nod to this year’s ELEVATE theme which is ‘Social City.’ I’m hosting flower knitting circles every week and inviting people to help. I usually create alone, but this is a community art endeavor. I can’t wait for people to see it!”
Onur Topal Sumer is a dancer, choreographer, producer and experiential filmmaker. Her project for ELEVATE incorporates all of her passions. It is a multi-media experience called “Live From Istanbul” which she is creating in collaboration with EYEDRUM.
“I wanted to participate in ELEVATE, but I had an opportunity to go home to Turkey,” says Sumer. “Then I realized because of current technology I could do both. Working with a team here and contemporary dancers in Turkey, we can create something new. Live-streaming from Istanbul we will project the images of dancers there onto various dancers and other surfaces in Atlanta during ELEVATE, creating an emotional connection between both cities. Art and technology will bring these two cultures together.”
You can be part of “Live From Istanbul” at the ELEVATE block party in the Fairlie-Poplar district of downtown Atlanta on Friday, October 17 at 8 pm.
Abby Joslin is an aerialist specializing in rectangle, trapeze, and Lyra. She began her aerial explorations in 2007 at the Circus Arts Institute. She will be performing in a show called Hours of the Darkest Night, a special production which is part of the Fringe Festival events at this year’s ELEVATE.
“We invite the audience to go for a magical journey in the dark woods,” states Joslin. “Suspending the laws of space and time, we’ll create a performance with live music, thrilling ground and aerial dance. We will explore the role that darkness and mystery play in our lives. It’s a little spooky and a lot of fun.”
You can see Hours of the Darkest Night at the 5 Points MARTA Station Amphitheatre on Wednesday, October 22 from 7-9 pm.
Malina Rodriquez is the Artistic Director of Dance Truck. A professional lighting designer and technical director for theater and dance, Rodriguez had the idea for Dance Truck in 2009 when Alvin Ailey came to Atlanta. Observing tour trucks unloading lighting and sets, she envisioned the truck actually being the stage. So began the grand experiment. The company’s novel approach – pull up a truck and dance in it – has garnered critical praise and a large, devoted following.
“We actually outfit a 26’ box truck with stage lights, props, a sound system and dance floor,” explains Rodriguez. “For ELEVATE we will have DJ Santiago Páramo cranking up the tunes, and we are presenting five incredible dancers: Corian Ellisor, Hez Stalcup, DENSE, Natalie Eggert and special guest Makoto Hirano from Philadelphia. Between their performances and afterwards we invite the audience to come dance along with us!”
Dance Truck will bring the party to ELEVATE on Fairlie Street in downtown Atlanta on Thursday, October 23 at 7:30 pm.
ELEVATE 2014 is being created with a wealth of talented artists and organizational collaboration. Just to name a few: Casey Lynch, Dustin Chambers, Joanie Le Mercier, Igor Korsunskiy, Kris Pilcher, Branden Collins, The Goat Farm, Mammal Gallery, The French Consulate and Eyedrum.
Locations for ELEVATE are Woodruff Park, Gallery 72, Five Points Plaza, and the Fairlie-Poplar district. However, many exhibits will take place in unusual locations in downtown and some art will be mobile.
Financial support for ELEVATE 2014 is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and FORD.
ELEVATE is a program of the City of Atlanta, Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. For more information and a list of events, visit their web site: http://www.elevateatlantaart.com/ and like them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ElevateAtlanta.
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