About a decade ago we planned and promoted the exhibition of a well known graffiti artist named HENSE. The day of the opening, a lawyer called threatening to send out the cops because the artist had allegedly defaced one of his client's buildings.
Arresting an artist at his own opening? This I could get press for!
As far as I know, no one went to jail that night, and the general consensus was fully realized at that time: graffiti was considered outsider art.
Flash forward ten years.
We celebrated the opening of the hottest new hotel in town, the Moxy Atlanta Midtown, this past Saturday with a mural reveal party featuring the artist GREG MIKE interviewed by Woodruff Arts Center's CEO Doug Shipman. If the placement of his mural in the hotel's lobby is any indication of how far graffiti art has come, "Welcome Home" his 54-foot long mural, takes center stage and comprises two full walls.
Greg and Doug spoke about the importance of public art, both ephemeral and permanent. Temporary installations create a call to action for folks to get out and see them while they last. And permanent exhibitions create a sense of place. All of this is good and Atlanta always needs more effort like this
This is the first Moxy hotel in Georgia and the first permanent installation of a GREG MIKE mural in a hotel. If you weren't one of the 300 guests in attendance for the talk-back and celebration, come check it out.