By Howard Pousner
Five years after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, artists continue to sift through their memories and emotions for meaning and expression. Ahead of the anniversary on Aug. 29, several events have popped up on Atlanta’s cultural calendar, with more expected.
Here’s a quick look at four:
“Katrina: Five Years of Reflection,” opening Aug. 13 at Spruill Gallery, presents the work of several artists who survived the disaster and conveyed that experience through their work. Included are pieces by Krista Jurisich, Neil Alexander, Brian Nolan, Lori K. Gordon, Debra Howell and Jan Gilbert.
Atlanta artist Elyse Defoor, who visited soon after the hurricane, will show a grouping of mixed-media works titled “X.U.ME.” It’s a response to the “X” symbol rescue workers sprayed on houses after they were searched.
Aug. 13-Sept. 11. Free. 4681 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. 770-394-4019, www.spruillgallery.blogspot.com.
“Hurricane Story: Photographs by Jennifer Shaw,” on view at Jennifer Schwartz Gallery, is a New Orleans photographer’s visual tale of her family’s experience during Katrina. Shaw, who gave birth to her first child the day the hurricane hit, illustrates her story in composed photos of toys that speak to her anxiety and then anger during her family’s exile.
Through Aug. 14. Free. 75 Bennett St., Suite K2, Atlanta. 404-790-9078,www.jenniferschwartzgallery.com.
“The Solemn Sounds of Silence: A New Orleans Metaphor,” showing at Mason Murer Fine Art, is built around Eric Waters’ photographs of the vintage clarinet collection of jazz historian Michael White that was ruined during Katrina. Waters’ photos are enhanced by music from jazz clarinetist White and poetry by Kevin Sipp. Though there’s sadness in the arranged images, there’s also beautiful color in the rusted metal of the clarinets. Waters and Sipp are now part-time Atlantans.
Through Aug. 31. Free. 199 Armour Drive, Atlanta, 404-879-1500, www.masonmurer.com.
“A Confederacy of Dunces” predates Katrina by nearly two and a half decades. But Theatrical Outfit is billing its world premiere adaptation of John Kennedy Toole’s 1980 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel as a “home-cooked meal of theater” for Louisiana post-hurricane transplants as well as those who celebrate New Orleans culture. It opens Aug. 11.
Outfit artistic director Tom Key wrote the adaptation, and Georgia Shakespeare artistic director Richard Garner directs. Aaron Muñoz stars as anti-hero Ignatius J. Reilly, leading a cast of 12 actors who portray 25 roles.
Aug. 11-Sept. 5 . $15-$35. 84 Luckie St., Atlanta. 678-528-1500, www.theatricaloutfit.org.