Arts Agenda - April 2021
Atlanta Contemporary At this year’s Atlanta Biennial, curator Dr. Jordan Amirkhani brings together 30 contemporary artists to present a bold snapshot of the Southeast in 2021 with Of Care and Destruction. Through painting, sculpture, drawing, installation, video, and photography, the exhibition confronts social issues caused by issues like COVID-19, racism, and inequality. It discusses the essential role that art plays at this moment in time. Virtual Remains takes you out of the traditional white cube for its portion of the Atlanta Biennial. Like Of Care and Destruction, it addresses current social issues like inequality and racism. In one installation, Danielle Deadwyler incorporates performance, video, and sculpture to tell the story of the Black laborers who constructed the Atlanta railway corridor. Other installations include experimental and documentary films, collages of fabricated archives, and more. Through August 1. Free. Timed tickets required. Noon-5 p.m. Tues., Wed., Fri., Sat.; noon-8 p.m. Thurs.; noon-4 p.m. Sun. Atlanta Contemporary Museum, 535 Means St. N.W. 404-688-1970. https://atlantacontemporary.org
High Museum of Art Bestowing Beauty: Masterpieces from Persian Lands Are you interested in seeing rarely displayed works from one of the most private collections of Persian art? This winter, the High Museum of Art’s Bestowing Beauty: Masterpieces from Persian Lands exemplifies Iranian culture from the 6th to 19th century. See works spanning a range of media like miniature paintings from the Persian national epic, Shahnama; inlaid metal wares; and a monumental silk carpet from the height of the Safavid dynasty carpet production. Organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the exhibition will be grouped into sections: Faith and Piety, Love and Longing, Kingship and Authority, Banquets and Battles, and Earth and Nature. Through April 18. Award-winning Georgia native David Driskell (1931-2020) is at the center of Icons of Nature and History, co-organized by Atlanta’s High Museum of Art and the Portland Museum of Art. As the first posthumous survey of his career, the exhibit reflects on Driskell’s seven decades of artistry with works from museums, private collections, and the artist’s estate. As an artist, he created paintings, collages, and prints frequently read in relationship to the Black Arts movement and Afrocentrism. Driskell made significant contributions to African American art as a field of study. He taught and mentored many students through his years at schools such as the University of Maryland, the Skowhegan School of Painting and Culture, and his alma mater, Howard University. During his time as a curator, museums such as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Atlanta’s High Museum mounted Driskell’s exhibitions. He was also an art advisor to celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey. Catch this traveling collection before it leaves for Portland in May! Through May 9. Timed tickets required. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4400. https://high.org
Jackson Fine Art Jackson Fine Art is ringing in spring with two powerful exhibitions of new work from two innovative, female photographers, Cig Harvey’s Eat Flowers and Angela West’s Persephone. Both series demonstrate spring’s symbol of rebirth, depicting images of lively blossoms, soft scenery, and beautiful colors. Harvey’s installation combines photography, letterpress text, and sculpture, while West uses paint on a series of landscape photos. The exhibition will close with an artist talk from Harvey on her recent, award-winning books. Through May 15. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tues.-Sat. Jackson Fine Art, 3115 East Shadowlawn Ave. 404-233-3739. https://www.jacksonfineart.com
Steffen Thomas Museum of Art Celebrate the art, life, and legacy of Georgia-born artist, David Driskell in a special exhibit, Celebrating Creative Genius. The gallery will feature artworks and prints on loan from galleries, private collections, and institutions, as well as photographs and artifacts from Driskell’s early life. The Steffen Thomas Museum of Art also selected works by students in the surrounding counties to be displayed in the museum’s West Gallery, alongside Driskell’s art. Through April 22. $8-$10, children under 6 free. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tues.-Sat. Steffen Thomas Museum of Art, 4200 Bethany Road, Buckhead, 706-342-7557. https://steffenthomas.org
Kinky Boots: The Musical Live from London’s West End comes this special virtual-theater experience. Based on the 2005 film and inspired by true events, Kinky Boots: The Musical tells the story of Charlie, a struggling factory owner, and Lola, a glamorous drag queen, as they work together to create a brand new kind of shoe. While their stiletto boots are impressive, their unlikely friendship becomes the pair’s greatest accomplishment. Featuring 16 original songs from Grammy and Tony award-winning artist Cyndi Lauper, the Broadway smash is “dazzling, sassy, and uplifting” (Time Out London). Head over to the Pittsburgh Playhouse’s website to see dates for future theater streams. $15. Wed. April 14-Tues. April 20. Runtime: 2 hours, 15 minutes (includes intermission) For tickets, dates, and times, see here. https://playhouse.pointpark.edu/tickets/NT-Live/kinky-boots
High Museum When imagining the birth of America, one can’t help but picture a rural life and honest farmers. Even now, as America is much more than farmland, artists are still drawn to images of the countryside. Through prints, drawings, and photographs, Our Good Earth: Rural Life and American Art explores the human connection with nature. Artists include Winslow Homer, Marion Greenwood, Lewis Hine, Andrew Wyeth, and more. The High aims to highlight its collection’s diversity in this compelling pastoral. Through August 1. Timed tickets required, see here for hours and pricing. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4400. https://high.org
Working: A Musical Since 1977, Working: A Musical has graced stages for seven different productions. People can’t seem to get enough of this Tony award-nominated show. Now featuring two new songs written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, the story is as fresh as ever. The Alliance’s outside, COVID-friendly “Under the Tent Series” takes place rain or shine, and allows you to buy pods with your friends to view the show while socially distancing with others. Food and drink are available for purchase. Opens April 22. Through June 6. See site for pricing and performance schedules. Alliance Theatre, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4650.
Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience Immerse yourself in the beauty of Van Gogh’s art at this traveling light and sound spectacular! The Pratt-Pullman Yard will host this cutting-edge exhibition featuring two-story projections of the artist’s most famous works. The experience also includes separate galleries that document his life through informational panels, recreations, and activities. One activity is the virtual reality interactive which offers the user a 10-minute journey through “A day in the life of the Artist.” The 20,000 square feet of space allows for social distancing and masks are required. This COVID-friendly exhibition is child-friendly, too, so bring the whole family along for this beautiful and educational trip. Opens May 19. Through August 1. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Mon.-Fri.; 9 a.m.-11 p.m. Sat.-Sun. (time slots available every half hour) Pratt Pullman Yards, Building 1, Rogers St. N.E. https://vangoghexpo.com/atlanta
Hermitage: The Power of Art Visit St. Petersburg’s State Hermitage Museum, home of the world’s largest collection of paintings, from the comfort of your couch. The documentary takes you on a vivid journey through two and a half centuries of art. Pieces range from Egyptian antiques and prehistoric art to modern and impressionist. Historically, the Hermitage has been a meeting place for great, creative minds to connect in Russia. $10. May 26-June 1. Runtime: 90 minutes. For tickets, dates, and times, see https://www.stellartickets.com/o/by-experience/events/hermitage-the-power-of-art-great-art-on-screen-documentary-at-home?aff=685920.
High Museum Electrifying Design: A Century of Lighting This summer, the High Museum presents a fascinating, touring exhibition exploring lighting design over the last century. The galleries will display nearly 80 lighting examples, from twinkling futuristic structures to vintage lamps and hanging lights. Designers include Achille Castiglioini, Greta Magnusson Grossman, Ingo Maurer, and others. The exhibition is split into three sections: “Typologies,” “The Lightbulb,” and “Quality of Light,” and features immersive experiences like DRIFT’s “Flylight” (2015), which puts the user in a room with interactive LED lights. This event is a unique one you won’t want to miss. Opens July 2. Through September 26. Timed tickets required. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-733-4400. https://high.org
Hamilton Kick off the post-quarantine season right with one of Broadway’s biggest hits. This show holds the record for the most Tony Award nominations in history with 16 total, and has won one of the highest number of Tonys to date, at 11 — including Best Musical, Best Original Score, and Best Choreography. Can you get bigger than that? Follow the story of Alexander Hamilton as he and pre-revolutionary America rise together, set against a modern-sounding score. These are rescheduled dates from 2020, so if you bought tickets last year, now’s your chance to finally see the show people can’t stop talking about. Wed., Aug. 25-Sun., Sept. 26. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E. 404-881-2100.