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Atlanta

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Dawn Williams Boyd.
Insiders Atlanta

Dawn Williams Boyd

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In order to give you the best of Atlanta, Whitewaller spoke with artist Dawn Williams Boyd, who shared her side of the city.

BEST OFF-THE-BEATEN-PATH PLACE TO SEE ART
I’m not sure how off-the-beaten-path this is, but before Covid, the places that my husband and I went to were ZuCot Gallery which is diagonal across the street from the new Mercedes-Benz stadium. We used to go to September Gray Gallery which is up on Bennett street. For off-the-beaten-path, you would have to go to the art centers: Abernathy Art Center, South West Art Center, Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. My group African Americans for the Arts, has an exhibit "Black Men: Fathers, Brothers and Sons" up at Callanwolde Fine Arts Center on Briarcliff. Just before Covid began there was a new space at what used to be the Haugabrooks Funeral Home, they had just opened and we were the second group of artists that had an exhibit in that space.

FAVORITE SPOT IN THE CITY TO FIND INSPIRATION
Lately, since it is not possible to go anywhere physically, I get most of my information from the national news , frankly. Since the quarantine began I spend most of my time at home and I listen to the local NPR station, WABE, for my local, national and International news. Since the series I am working on is about issues that would affect us as Americans and as citizens of the planet, the news station is an excellent place to get inspiration and ideas about what subjects to discuss next artistically.

BEST-KEPT SECRET IN ATLANTA
Again before Covid, the best kept secret in Atlanta is actually a place my family owns, which may disqualify it, but it is called Omenala Griot . It is an Afrocentric event center, just off the main drag in the West End neighborhood. That is in fact one of the things that we call it, “the best-kept secret in Atlanta.” We had weddings there, festivals of various sorts, it has a very large African art collection housed there, some of my work is housed there. When my mother was alive it was a teaching museum but since her passing in 2009 we use it as an event center, so as I said there are certain elements of the African American community in Atlanta that know about it, they call it the Griot, they call it the African American Museum. So a lot of people know about it though they don’t know what it is called. People drive by it all the time and when you tell them where it is they go “ Oh! I've been by there a thousand times, I didn’t know there was a museum there or an event center there.” So that would qualify as the best-kept secret in Atlanta. Omenala Griot Museum and Event Center.

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