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The Hudgens Center for Art & Learning has scheduled talks for its 2019 Hudgens Prize finalists, a career-transforming award that comes with $50,000 and a solo exhibition. The lone winner will be named October 5; the finalists exhibition continues through October 25. The finalists are ceramic and clay artist Darien Arikoski-Johnson and multimedia artist Paul S. Benjamin (talks 2–4 p.m. August 24) and tap dancer/performance artist Benae Beamon and painter/sculptor Michi Meko (talks 2–4 p.m. September 14).

The 2019 prize winner’s solo exhibition runs August–October 2020 at the gallery in Duluth. The most recent winner was choreographer Lauri Stallings, whose work was seen in 2018.

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Ruth Laxson memorial this Saturday

Ruth Laxson in her garden (Courtesy of MOCA GA)

MOCA GA will host a memorial service this Saturday for painter and sculptor extraordinaire Ruth Laxson, who died in June at age 94. The remembrance will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. in the lower galleries. The museum will close to the public at 1 p.m. All are welcome, MOCA GA spokesmen say, but space will be “very limited.”

Laxson, a fixture on the Atlanta art scene for decades, was known for printmaking, paintings, sculptures, artist’s books and her garden, a site-specific work of art in its own right. “Her expressive mark-making,” says a statement on the MOCA GA website, “was imbued with social skepticism and an unmistakable sense of playfulness.” MOCA GA Director Annette Cone-Skelton remembers her friend as “a remarkable woman of great strength and talent, with an insatiable thirst for wisdom and understanding of the human experience.”

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ELEVATE fest heads to Pittsburgh neighborhood

The 2019 ELEVATE Public Art Festival will take place October 15–20 in Atlanta’s historic Pittsburgh neighborhood, according to the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. The temporary public art event, in its ninth year, celebrates the city’s creative energy through cultural, community-specific art installations, exhibitions and performances. For updates, follow the fest at @ELEVATEATL on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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FLUX 2019 lineup: It sounds wild

FLUX: Ponce City Market, an art event that will explore the space as an acoustic playground, has named the 11 artists who will turn up the volume at the September 26–29 exhibition. FLUX approaches public art as a pathway to investigate Atlanta sites in ways that bring their past, present and future into conversation.

Curator Ben Coleman, a multidisciplinary artist from Britain, has chosen Atlanta sculptor, performer and sound artist Jane Foley; Tricia Hersey, an Atlanta poet, performance artist, theater maker and community organizer; New York-based artist, composer and percussionist Eli Keszler; Atlanta sound designer Andrew Lackey (collaborating with Atlanta conceptual sculptor Mark Wentzel); Kai Riedl and Éric Marty of Otherpole; Atlanta interdisciplinary artist and designer Talecia Tucker; and the Unexpected Collective (lighting designer/performance artist Rebecca M. K. Makus, artist/technologist Elly Jessop Nattinger and media experience artist Peter A. Torpey).

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Drink, Doodle and buy new art at ABV Gallery

ABV Gallery‘s next Drink & Doodle (Volume 65) will feature 12 Atlanta artists creating work live and selling it through an event-long silent auction. The work is framed and retrieved by its new owners at the end of the night. The August 28 event, free and open to the public, includes complimentary music and beverages. Drink & Doodle happens monthly at ABV (A Better View), a creative agency, collection, art + design collective and gallery space on Auburn Avenue near downtown.

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Next at MODA: A design conversation with Ashleigh Axios

Ashleigh Axios

The third season of MODA’s Design Conversations continues at 7 p.m. August 22 with Ashleigh Axios, an advocate for design’s ability to break barriers and create positive social change. Axios leads The Studio, where she’s an executive creative director for Automattic, a company seeking to democratize publishing and commerce. Previously, she was a creative director and a digital strategist in the Obama White House. The conversation ($15 for non-MODA members) is open to designers and anyone interested in how design can inform corporate success. Reservations are suggested.

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Check out . . .

The Zuckerman Museum of Art at Kennesaw State University opens two exhibitions on August 24 with a free reception and special programming (3–5 p.m.).

The small show Painting Who? (through December 15) focuses on paintings that serve multiple roles. The work, not quite sculpture, stretches the traditional boundaries of painting. Featured artists include Jeff Conefry of Brooklyn; Gracie Mehan DeVito of Connecticut; the late Moira Dryer; Atlanta-born, New York-based Chris Hood; and Wihro Kim of Atlanta.

Fruitful Labors (through November 10) focuses on strategies and tactics for coping, and features work by Lenka Clayton of Pittsburgh; Harry DodgeStanya Kahn and Kaitlynn Redell of Los Angeles; Shanequa Gay and Michelle Laxalt of Atlanta; and Shana Moulton of New York.

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