As Atlanta seeks ways to improve public transportation, a group of local artists spent a day creating art while riding the rails and buses of MARTA.
The New Evolutionary Movement Art Collective (NEM), a collective of emerging artists affecting a positive change in human evolution through artistic endeavors, sent out five artists to experience MARTA for 12 hours and create a series of paintings, photographs, documented performances, and illustrations.
“In Transit,” a group exhibition opening at WonderRoot Gallery on August 22 at 7 p.m., will feature the works created.
Kris Pilcher, founder of NEM and local painter, believes that they found a side of public transportation that often gets overlooked. “Many of us spend hours on MARTA each day,” says Pilcher, “and yet most of us spend it with our eyes on a book, our phones or staring into the distance. Instead of focusing on where we were going, we wanted to find inspiration from where we were and the people we were there with.”
Atlanta-based illustrator Jon Ross found the experience to be an accurate portrayal of his city. “There is no better way to see Atlanta’s depth, breadth and people than riding MARTA for 12 hours,” says Ross.
Riding MARTA did not only provide subject matter for the NEM artists, but also influenced the way they created. “This was not only an investigation of the Marta experience,” says Pilcher, “but it was also a test of creative endurance. It was a bit disconcerting working outside of my normal creative environment.”
“WonderRoot is thrilled to host a multidisciplinary exhibit that is part record of a particular experience and part experiment in process,” says WonderRoot’s Maggie Ginestra. “I look forward to the conversations NEM’s work will inspire as artists spend time in the gallery in the weeks that follow the opening.”
In addition to works from Kris Pilcher, Chris Bates, Kelly Blackmon, Stephanie Pharr, and Jon Ross, In Transit will feature a short documentary of the experience by Allister Reynolds. The opening reception will feature poetry and prose readings and a musical performance by Lily and the Tigers.
Through Sept. 26.
982 Memorial Dr.
Atlanta, GA 30316