Atlanta Life and Culture

The AJC Features Team spotlights arts previews, reviews, profiles, news features and breaking news on Atlanta's cultural and life scene.

Skate over to Atlanta Contemporary on Aug. 29 for Art Party

Atlanta Contemporary will be kickin’ it old school for its annual Art Party fundraiser on Aug. 29, starting with its pavilion being turned into a freestyle roller rink, with partiers encouraged to don neon-shaded socks and necklaces and rental skates.

Beneath the disco lights, the Atlanta Rollergirls will be skating alongside guests to summer hits spun by Atlanta DJ Ree De La Vega.

In addition to a chance to view three new fall solo exhibits (by John Riepenhoff, Marlon Mullen and Aleksandra Domanović), Art Party patrons will enjoy entertainment (DJ-producer Sandhill and the headliner, Iraqi-Canadian hip-hop artist Narcy), food and drink (cash bars) and and visits to 11 artist studio spaces.

Art Party proceeds support Atlanta Contemporary’s exhibitions, public programs and Studio Artist Program. The Westside contemporary art nonprofit will adopt a free admission policy starting Sept. 1, as previously announced.

7 p.m.-midnight. Tickets begin at $50. 535 Means St. N.W., Atlanta. 404-688-1970,

For more on the three fall exhibits, all through Nov. 7, here are  descriptions as provided by Atlanta Contemporary:


John Riepenhoff will be in attendance on opening night.

His exhibition consists of two parts: first, a collection of large-scale plein air paintings depicting the artist’s observations of the night sky, executed at Atlanta Contemporary in summer 2015. Second is a series of collaborative figurative sculptures, papier-mâché legs outfitted in Riepenhoff’s pants and shoes holding large-scale paintings by artists from Milwaukee, Chicago, New York and Atlanta.

Riepenhoff was born in 1982 in Milwaukee and received his BFA from the Peck School of the Arts at the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. He is represented by Marlborough Gallery.

Riepenhoff is also a curator and co-owner of the Green Gallery, Milwaukee; co-organizer of the Milwaukee International and Dark Fairs; and an inventor of artistic platforms for the expression of others.

His recent exhibitions and curatorial projects have been presented at the Tate Modern and Frieze Art Fair, London; Marlborough, Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, James Fuentes and the Swiss Institute, New York; Pepin Moore, Freedman Fitzpatrick and Ooga Booga, Los Angeles; Cooper Cole, Toronto; the Suburban, Oak Park, Ill.; Western Exhibitions, Chicago; Madison Museum of Contemporary Art and the Poor Farm, Wisconsin; and the Milwaukee Art Museum, Dean Jensen Gallery, Small Space, Milwaukee.

He also continues a program of the John Riepenhoff Experience at various locations around the world, most recently at Night Gallery, Los Angeles.


Marlon Mullen bases his paintings on found images — primarily lifestyle, news and contemporary art periodicals. The original source material becomes obscured, abstracted, and finally replaced by Mullen’s own unique language of interlocking colors and forms. In the process of developing a painting, Mullen’s original magazine pages typically become hidden or literally abstracted, with the image subsequently reduced to a graphic schema of interlocking colors and forms. Very similar to the beats created for hip hop — operating at the threshold between legibility and illegibility — Mullen’s works live within the multiple histories of 20th-century modernism while still remaining highly personal.

Born in 1963 in Richmond, Calif., Marlon Mullen is autistic and does not speak. Mullen currently resides in Rodeo, Calif., and creates his work at NIAD Art Center (Nurturing Independence through Artistic Development) in Richmond since 1993. He was recently the recipient of the 2015 Wynn Newhouse Award.


In Turbo Sculpture, Aleksandra Domanović questions the emergence of a new kind of public art in the ex-Yugoslavia republics, which she defines in reference to Turbofolk, a popular style of music in the region, suggesting that these sculptures remain neutral in the turmoil of political disputes. Unlike war memorials, these public monuments do not refer to a common history of a specific site or occurrence; they are based, instead, on modern popular culture that knows no genius loci.

Instead of war heroes — who would have been immortalized by classical monuments— local authorities now decide to eternalize Hollywood stars and heroes of the Western world in bronze. Bruce Lee, Johnny Depp, Rocky Balboa, and other film characters or public personae (here the real and fictive blur) provide new points of identification for communities in place of celebrating national heroes after the atrocities of war and the damaged reputations of political leaders.

Domanović’s work is concerned with the circulation and reception of images and information, particularly as they shift meaning and change register, traversing different contexts and historical circumstances.

Recent solo exhibitions include "Glasgow International 2014," Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow (2014); "Aleksandra Domanović," firstsite, Colcheste, Essex, U.K. (2014); "The Future Was at Her Fingertips," Tanya Leighton, Berlin (2013); "Turbo Sculpture," SPACE, London (2012); and "From yu to me," Kunsthalle Basel (2012).


Atlanta Contemporary curator Daniel Fuller will lead free tours of the three exhibits at 6 p.m. Sept. 3 and 2 p.m. Oct. 3.

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The AJC Features Team spotlights arts previews, reviews, profiles, news features and breaking news on Atlanta's cultural and life scene.