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Best of Atlanta 2016 Index

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2016 Index of Winners


Best gallery for otherground art

Notch 8 Gallery Notch8 Gallery
In the last year NOTCH 8 has quietly emerged as one of the guaranteed spots to find the artists defining ATL’s otherground arts scene. From Paper Frank and Corey Davis to Artemus Jenkins and Dubelyoo, the artists embody an innovative, left-leaning aesthetic and Notch 8’s shows draw crowds well intomore...
In the last year NOTCH 8 has quietly emerged as one of the guaranteed spots to find the artists defining ATL’s otherground arts scene. From Paper Frank and Corey Davis to Artemus Jenkins and Dubelyoo, the artists embody an innovative, left-leaning aesthetic and Notch 8’s shows draw crowds well into the hundreds on opening nights. Co-founded by City of Ink’s Miya Bailey and Sharon Dennehy, Notch 8 is a place not only to view dope art, but to buy it. At least that’s the goal for Bailey, who has said his focus includes making collectors out of casual appreciators. At his March show, Before I’m Gone Vol. 1: The Art of Miya Bailey, works started at $100. With its vision and the cool to back it up, Notch 8 has surpassed gallery status to become ground zero for many of the city’s creatives. less...

Best Instagrammer

Cool Atlanta
Sarah Spear is the brains behind Instagram account COOL ATLANTA, which features artful snaps of everything from the hippest craft cocktails and brunch spots to hidden-gem murals, locally made wares, and more. After moving from Los Angeles to Atlanta in 2012, Spear started the account (and accompanyingmore...
Sarah Spear is the brains behind Instagram account COOL ATLANTA, which features artful snaps of everything from the hippest craft cocktails and brunch spots to hidden-gem murals, locally made wares, and more. After moving from Los Angeles to Atlanta in 2012, Spear started the account (and accompanying blog) to log her immersion into the city. Now, with a few years as a Southerner under her belt, and a gig as Paces Properties’ director of marketing, she’s helping more and more followers fall in love with Atlanta, one shot at a time. www.instagram.com/coolatlanta. less...

Best local designer

Karen Glass
True to form, KAREN GLASS wasted zero time laying a strong foundation for her ethically conscious avant-garde fashion line zerøwaste. This year, Glass showcased at Modern Atlanta and premiered an experimental retail concept at the Goat Farm Arts Center. She also has dreamy collaborations with localmore...
True to form, KAREN GLASS wasted zero time laying a strong foundation for her ethically conscious avant-garde fashion line zerøwaste. This year, Glass showcased at Modern Atlanta and premiered an experimental retail concept at the Goat Farm Arts Center. She also has dreamy collaborations with local institutions in the works. The zerøwaste line adheres to a minimalist, muted approach and palette. Garments include repurposed jeans, gowns, and upcycled blazers, all designed by Glass and made in her Goat Farm studio in collaboration with Beloved, a work-training program for women in recovery so they can make a living wage. www.zerowastekarenglass.com. less...

Best local residency

Hambidge Creative Residency Program

Best museum that keeps bringing us back

High Museum of Art High Museum of Art
The HIGH MUSEUM OF ART kept us Midtown-bound opening after opening over the last year. The November exhibition, Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion, marked the Dutch designer’s first North American show and the High’s fashion debut. The vast display included 45 outfits from 15 collections and revealedmore...
The HIGH MUSEUM OF ART kept us Midtown-bound opening after opening over the last year. The November exhibition, Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion, marked the Dutch designer’s first North American show and the High’s fashion debut. The vast display included 45 outfits from 15 collections and revealed van Herpen’s flair for marrying technology, unconventional materials such as umbrella ribs repurposed as wearable art, and couture. Two outdoor exhibitions, Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena’s Los Trompos and Jaime Hayon’s Tiovivo (up through Nov. 27), provided younger (and not so young) visitors the opportunity to interact with beautiful structures. Los Trompos translates to “spinning tops” and took the meaning literally with its playground-size playthings. Tiovivo planted large-scale sculptures in the piazza. With their hollow insides and attached stairs and slides, the cartoonish structures invited investigation. The museum attracted almost 1,700 people to the opening of The Rise of Sneaker Culture, a thorough collection that included about 160 pairs of shoes. Besides showcasing familiar footwear such as Run-DMC’s shell-toe Adidas, The Rise “highlighted the marriage between high fashion and street wear,” CL senior writer Rodney Carmichael wrote. In addition to pushing boundaries with fashion-forward and touch-friendly installations, the High slayed with the retrospective Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks, which presented pages from the late American artist’s journals and sketchbooks. What’s the High got planned next? Chances are, we’ll be there opening night. less...

Best resource for dancers

Work Room Work Room
What good is potential if an artist never has the time or resources to refine her craft? This thought weighed heavily on the mind of Atlanta dancer/choreographer Blake Beckham for years. Rather than leave town or quit dancing altogether, Beckham doubled down with her team at contemporary performancemore...
What good is potential if an artist never has the time or resources to refine her craft? This thought weighed heavily on the mind of Atlanta dancer/choreographer Blake Beckham for years. Rather than leave town or quit dancing altogether, Beckham doubled down with her team at contemporary performance company Lucky Penny and created the WORK ROOM. With a custom sprung dance floor and big beautiful windows, the Work Room offers a unique opportunity for resident artists to have 24/7 year-round space to train, experiment, and grow. less...

Best accessories for bar hopping

Fossil & Hide
Karen Horn Smith and Jenny Watts’ local accessories line FOSSIL & HIDE is designed for those who aren’t afraid to be asked, “Is that an animal skull hanging from your necklace?” because the answer is probably, “Yes.” Since spring 2012, the local duo has been churning out rock ’n’ roll-inspiredmore...
Karen Horn Smith and Jenny Watts’ local accessories line FOSSIL & HIDE is designed for those who aren’t afraid to be asked, “Is that an animal skull hanging from your necklace?” because the answer is probably, “Yes.” Since spring 2012, the local duo has been churning out rock ’n’ roll-inspired wares in a signature style that embraces chunky metals and large stones of turquoise and quartz that lend themselves to statement-making layering. Score a choker, bangle, necklace, ring or earring set of your own at pop-up shops at Argosy and Estoria, or from ATL stockists such as Live Free Tattoo, the Clothing Warehouse, Kudzu Antiques, Henry & June, and Citizen Supply. www.fossilandhide.com. less...

Best liquor store

Decatur Package Store Decatur Package Store
You could argue that what makes a liquor store great is volume; the more bottles on the shelves the better. But you’d be wrong. What really makes a liquor store shine is the passion and purpose behind it. More specifically, the people. For more than a decade now, DECATUR PACKAGE STORE owner Herb Chereckmore...
You could argue that what makes a liquor store great is volume; the more bottles on the shelves the better. But you’d be wrong. What really makes a liquor store shine is the passion and purpose behind it. More specifically, the people. For more than a decade now, DECATUR PACKAGE STORE owner Herb Chereck has labored to ensure that his shop is stocked with all manner of world-class beers, wines, and spirits. Armed with encyclopedic knowledge and endless enthusiasm, Chereck and his staff oversee the most thoughtful, diverse, and interesting booze selection in town all while maintaining an air of unpretentious approachability. Here you’ll find all the big name brands as well as trendy bottles of bitters, amaros, and esoteric spirits. There’s a growing selection of craft sake and shochu, and Decatur Package boasts one of the most robust value wine portfolios in town. Whether you’re looking to impress your foodie friends with fancy cocktails or just looking for a great bottle of red to drink with dinner, Decatur Package has your back. less...

Best pathway to spiritual realignment

Exhale Spa at Loews Atlanta Hotel Loews Atlanta Hotel
Remember that scene in The Matrix where Neo is presented with the option of taking the red or blue pill? Sometimes we’re slaves to our ego. Fears become demons, blocking us from being our better selves. What we need is a breakthrough, a respite to reawaken our capacity for self-improvement. EXHALEmore...
Remember that scene in The Matrix where Neo is presented with the option of taking the red or blue pill? Sometimes we’re slaves to our ego. Fears become demons, blocking us from being our better selves. What we need is a breakthrough, a respite to reawaken our capacity for self-improvement. EXHALE SPA AT LOEWS ATLANTA HOTEL offers all that and some. With a staff of passionate, trained professionals, they specialize in everything from traditional massage to energy healing (reiki), from acupuncture to om body therapy “tui na.” No matter what choice you make, you’ll leave better suited for returning to mere existence as usual. www.exhalespa.com/spa. less...

Best tailor services

AND: Tokyo Alterations AND Trio Clothiers TRIO Custom Clothiers
Tokyo Alterations, 4058 Peachtree Road, Suite D. 404-237-7063.

Best urban market

Sweet Auburn Curb Market Sweet Auburn Curb Market
In an era when Atlantans crave the flavor of authenticity touted by refurbished yesteryear developments — from Ponce City Market to Krog Street Market — only one such food market has a century-old timestamp. Talk about a storied legacy. The Great Atlanta Fire of 1917 spawned the creation of the open-airmore...
In an era when Atlantans crave the flavor of authenticity touted by refurbished yesteryear developments — from Ponce City Market to Krog Street Market — only one such food market has a century-old timestamp. Talk about a storied legacy. The Great Atlanta Fire of 1917 spawned the creation of the open-air Municipal Market of Atlanta. Black vendors weren’t permitted to sell livestock or produce inside when its first permanent structure was constructed in 1924. Instead they were relegated to the curb outside — hence the name SWEET AUBURN CURB MARKET, as it’s known today. Located one block from the heart of Auburn Avenue, which was declared the “richest Negro street in the world” by Fortune magazine 60 years ago, the market maintains a choke hold on rich culinary traditions. And a visit is a veritable field trip for all five senses. As soon as you step inside, the sweet nuttiness of Miss D’s New Orleans Pralines meets your nose. Butcher cases treat turkey tails, hog maws, fat back, chitlins, oxtails, pork belly, pig feet, and red hot links like everyday Southern delicacies. Fresh collards, turnips, mustards, and kale line the aisles of produce vendors. And when you can’t bear it any more, there are plenty of mouth-watering eateries to feed your face — from soul food (Afrodish Restaurant, Metro Deli) to finger-lickin’ food (Arepa Mia, Bell Street Burritos, Grindhouse Killer Burgers, Sweet Auburn BBQ, Yum Diggity). Far from your faux-artisanal food court, this is where the moms and pops set up shop. less...

Best wardrobe refresher

Refresh by Ree
Sometimes all you need is the right accessory to make an outfit pop. Sheree Swann always knew she had a knack for working with her hands, but it didn’t blossom into a full-time profession until six months ago when she quit her job to focus on her independent line of handcrafted accessories. REEFRESHmore...
Sometimes all you need is the right accessory to make an outfit pop. Sheree Swann always knew she had a knack for working with her hands, but it didn’t blossom into a full-time profession until six months ago when she quit her job to focus on her independent line of handcrafted accessories. REEFRESH BY REE features fabric-covered button earrings, bracelets, Peter Pan collars, and bowties made with tribal and Afrocentric prints. Drawn to kente cloth and African art since childhood, Swann set out to create a cool, eccentric line that would give people the freedom to express themselves and reflect their sense of cultural pride. The result: a fly, funky line of accessories easy to suit up for business or dress down after hours. An established photographer and documenter of Atlanta’s underground hip-hop scene, Swann’s patterns and designs move with their own rhythmic flow. She also has plans to expand into home décor in the future. When in need of the right accessory to make that outfit pop, consider something locally made and universally conscious. www.reefreshbyree.etsy.com. www.facebook.com/ReefreshbyRee. less...

Best way to wear your vibes on your sleeves

Melting Sun Apparel
Since the first day of 2012, Lauren Visconti has been working to create an array of products that she says are catered to “the modern bohemian” through her line MELTING SUN APPAREL. Visconti’s 100-percent handmade pieces come in the form of jewelry, accessories, and separates that are at once dreamymore...
Since the first day of 2012, Lauren Visconti has been working to create an array of products that she says are catered to “the modern bohemian” through her line MELTING SUN APPAREL. Visconti’s 100-percent handmade pieces come in the form of jewelry, accessories, and separates that are at once dreamy and light while also being edgy and on trend. Offerings include long necklaces, chunky stackable rings, and delicate earrings, plus hand-stamped tanks, moon phase-inspired tapestries, banners, patches, and more. Over the years, Melting Sun has caught the eye of local stockists such as Young Blood, Paris on Ponce, Crafted Westside, Lark & Sparrow, and Citizen Supply as well as big-name brands including Alternative Apparel, which will soon carry some pieces in its physical stores. Snag one of her pieces while shopping local or hitting up the next crafty pop-up event — she’s sure to have a booth. www.meltingsunapparel.com. less...

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