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Archive for November, 2010

Korea-born Gyun Hur, 27, wins $50,000 Hudgens Prize

By Howard Pousner

Gyun Hur, a 27-year-old Marietta resident who came to the U.S. from her native Korea at age 13, has won the first Hudgens Prize, a visual arts competition with an award of $50,000.

Hur was announced as the winner of the prize Tuesday night at the Jacqueline Casey  Hudgens Center for the Arts during a private reception marking the opening of an exhibit of the competition’s five finalists. She broke into torrents of tears when Linda Lindeborg, Hudgens Prize committee chairwoman, tore open an envelope, Oscars style, and read her name.

The artist thanked the judges, her family in the audience and Hudgens officials, pledging that the award “will change my life.”

In an interview after the brief ceremony, Hur said, “The beginning of an artistic career does not guarantee financial security. … Now, I can really jump into opportunities that will help me continue to commit to art-making.”

The first-time competition drew 369 entries from …

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Culture notes: ASO popping up; Fernbank-Callanwolde deal

Symphony pops up
In the spirit of “flash mob” events that appear with little notice (save for some hints via social media), the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra has been doing some “Classical Flash” performances around Atlanta. We’ll spill the beans that the next one, featuring Walton High School Chorus members, will be at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday [12/1] at the Avenue East Cobb (at the Santa/carriage ride station). Follow the ASO on on Twitter (@AtlantaSymphony) or Facebook ( for details of Thursday’s [12/2] 12:30 p.m. appearance by ASO Chorus members (hint: in a public atrium where people are usually scanning for arrival/departure times). HOWARD POUSNER

Holiday deal
DeKalb County’s Callanwolde Fine Arts Center and Fernbank Museum of Natural History are joining together to offer a discounted admission deal to the holiday attractions at both. Through Dec. 12, you can experience Christmas at Callanwolde and Fernbank’s Winter …

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Hudgens to announce winner of $50,000 visual arts prize Tuesday night

By Howard Pousner

The Hudgens Center for the Arts will name the winner of its Hudgens Prize visual arts competition on Nov. 30 at a private reception for an exhibit of the five finalists: Ruth Dusseault, Gyun Hur, Scott Ingram and Jiha Moon, all of Atlanta, and Hope Hilton of Winterville.

The winner of the first-time competition, which drew 369 entries, will receive $50,000 plus a solo exhibit at the Gwinnett arts center. The prize money was donated anonymously to the Hudgens, which created the competition to encourage the visual arts in Georgia.

A three-person panel of jurors – David Kiehl (curator of prints, Whitney Museum of American Art), Sylvie Fortin (editor in chief, Art Papers magazine) and Eungie Joo (director and curator of exhibitions and public programs, the New Museum) — met in New York City in August to view more than 2,000 submitted images. The same trio selected the prize winner.

The finalists exhibition will be on view at the Hudgens from …

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Homegrown books for Christmas

By Gina WebbAlbert

With the holidays just around the corner, we’ve sorted through this year’s titles with a Southern-style Christmas in mind. Whether your taste runs to mystery, memoirs or miracles, here’s an assortment we’re sure will be welcome under the tree.

Many of us look forward to epic family gatherings during the holidays, and in “Christmas Mourning” (Grand Central, $25.99), the 16th book in Margaret Maron’s popular series, Judge Deborah Knott is no exception. But just as the sprawling Knott tribe convenes in Colleton, N.C., for the holidays, a popular local high school girl dies in a suspicious car crash, followed by the shooting deaths of two teenage brothers. Family and friends play a central role in solving this mystery, as Knott and her chief deputy husband gather clues.

Nothing says Merry Christmas quite like your husband’s ex waltzing into your life during the holidays. Amateur sleuth-herb shop owner China Bayles is readying for another holiday season in Pecan …

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‘The Day Dixie Died: The Battle of Atlanta’ by Gary Ecelbarger

Book Review
“The Day Dixie Died: The Battle of Atlanta”
By Gary Ecelbarger
St. Martin’s Press; 320 pages; $26.99

gary_ecelbargerBy Steve Weinberg

If Civil War historian Gary Ecelbarger can change minds, Georgians should observe July 22 as a date equal to July 4 in significance.

Numerous Civil War battles have been promoted as the most significant for the five-year conflict. But the Battle of Atlanta, carried out mostly on July 22, 1864, is rarely mentioned. Ecelbarger, a scholar based in Northern Virginia, wants it to achieve primacy. As the title — “The Day Dixie Died: The Battle of Atlanta” — suggests, Ecelbarger’s new book considers the Confederacy’s defeat in that battle an underrated turning point.

Here’s the gist of his case: By July 1864, it seemed obvious the Confederacy would not defeat the Union militarily. However, the Union, personified by President Abraham Lincoln, wasn’t going to win on its terms because Confederate troops had exacted a huge toll and did not appear …

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What’s new for the holidays at three popular metro attractions

By Howard Pousner

Here’s a quick look at what’s new at three metro Atlanta attractions that are popular stops for residents and their guests during the holidays.

Stone Mountain Park
U.S. 78, Exit 8, Stone Mountain, 770-498-5690,

Stone Mountain Park’s high-flying, wish-granting Snow Angel is becoming a bigger star with each year. This year, the proof is in the park’s new Wonderland Walkway, a “magical tunnel of lights and melodies” that leads to this Christmas queen’s new digs, Snow Palace at Memorial Hall. That’s where guests can have their picture taken with the ethereal angel and her toy soldiers before she takes flight at the end of each night above Crossroads village to make it “snow.”
Among the various (and short!) holiday musical shows offered multiple times nightly is a new revue, “Holly Jolly Cabaret,” in which the audience can participate by ringing bells and trumpeting horns. A returning favorite is …

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Rare Egyptian mummy to go on view at Carlos Museum next year

By Howard Pousner

A rarely displayed Egyptian mummy, the oldest in the Western Hemisphere, will be the focus of an exhibit next year at Emory University, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned.
The mummy, which dates to 2300 B.C. and was purchased by Emory theology professor William A. Shelton during an excavation at the sacred site of Abydos in 1920, will be featured in “Life and Death in the Pyramid Age: The Emory Old Kingdom Mummy.” The exhibit will open Sept. 10 at the Michael Carlos Museum.
One of only a half-dozen mummies known to exist from the Old Kingdom  (roughly between 2600 B.C. and 2100 B.C.), one of the earliest periods  of Egyptian mummification practices, the male mummy is currently undergoing conservation.
The announcement follows recent news that the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s will return ancient objects to Egypt attributed to King Tut’s tomb.
While mummies have fascinated museum-goers for decades, little is known about the …

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Fay Gold gets into the art of travel

By Howard Pousner

Her art gallery was a destination in Atlanta for nearly three decades, and now Fay Gold is planning on taking tour groups to arty destinations.
Having closed her self-named Buckhead gallery last year, Gold is launching a new venture with Atlanta travel business executive Bram Majtlis — high-end European art tours. Their endeavor, Fay Gold Treasures, will take wing in May with a weeklong tour of Vienna. Visits to Amsterdam and Berlin also are being planned for 2011.
The groups will be small (20 to 25), the better to savor behind-the-scenes tours of museums, art fairs, private collections and artist studios. The price will be … well, not so small. The Vienna tour is $6,750 per person based on double occupancy.
But the freight is virtually all-inclusive, covering everything from five nights of luxury accommodations at the new Ring Hotel to multiple fine-dining meals and a packed art itinerary that includes stops at the Leopold and Albertina …

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Culture notes: Woodruff, Georgia Shakespeare get in on Black Friday

Dali’s Black Friday

Hours will be extended (10 a.m.-7 p.m.) as the High Museum of Art presents a “Dilly-Dally with Dalí” on Friday. The family fun will include mustache-making, flamenco performances, a magic show and, of course, the special exhibit, “Dalí: The Late Work” (

Meanwhile, the gift shops of the High and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, plus a temporary Indie Craft Experience Pop-Up Shop, will host a Black Friday Shop-a-Thon, 4-8 p.m.; purchase at all three and receive a free $10 Woodruff Arts Center gift card. HOWARD POUSNER

Bard’s Black Friday

Georgia Shakespeare is throwing a Black Friday sale on tickets to its holiday show, “A Christmas Story.” Select seats for the entire run of the nostalgic comedy based on the movie of the same name, Dec. 8-26, will be 20 percent off. For 24 hours only on Friday, purchase through the box office (open 10 a.m.-7 p.m., 4484 Peachtree Road …

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Hudgens arts center celebrates fund-raising goal with free offer

By Howard Pousner

The Jacqueline Casey Hudgens Center for the Arts received more than $90,000 in donations after sending out an SOS to supporters at the start of October seeking to raise $30,000 in 30 days to address a cash shortfall.

To say thank you and in hopes of attracting new guests, the Duluth arts center, Gwinnett’s biggest, is waving admission charges through the end of the year.

That comes at a good time: The center is hosting the Hudgens Artist Market, with works by more than 30 artists for sale, on Friday (5:30-8:30 p.m.) and Saturday (10 a.m.-4 p.m.).nov 12-13 A photography exhibit by John Lawrence of LaGrange College also runs through Saturday.

Information: 770-623-6002,

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