Georgia-made art to share spotlight with ‘Girl’ this summer

You may have heard that an exhibition featuring Johannes Vermeer’s “Girl With a Pearl Earring,” among other Dutch Golden Age masterworks, is coming to the High Museum of Art starting Sunday.

True, but that eternally intriguing 17th century beauty is hardly the only eye-catcher on view or preparing to show up in metro Atlanta’s nonprofit art spaces in approaching days. By happy happenstance, several promising group exhibits showcasing a swath of contemporary Atlanta and Georgia talent are settling in for summer runs.

If you’re interested in measuring the local visual art pulse, here are some promising opportunities:

Hudgens Prize Finalists Exhibit

The Hudgens Center for the Arts in Duluth is hosting a Finalists Exhibit featuring four Georgia artists in competition for its second Hudgens Prize, which comes with a tidy $50,000 award, one of the country’s largest for visual artists.

The finalists are Christopher Chambers, primarily an installation artist whose work merges multiple disciplines; Robbie Land, a live-action and animation filmmaker and installation artist; Derek Larson, a digital/multidisciplinary artist; and Pam Longobardi, an environmental artist. All are Atlantans except Larson of Statesboro.

They were chosen from among 370 statewide applicants by a three-member jury. The prize winner is to be announced Aug. 10.

For more information about the artists and links to their personal websites, visit the Hudgens Prize Finalists page at

Through Sept. 7. 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Building 300, in Duluth. 770-623-6002.

“Georgia Artists Selecting Georgia Artists”

“Georgia Artists Selecting Georgia Artists,” opening with a public reception 6:30-8:30 p.m. June 21 at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, will feature some 100 pieces by 60 Peach State artists.

MOCA GA has said that there was no intent to mount a survey or find a common theme, but to simply assemble some of the best work being produced in Georgia. The curators were Xie Caomin, Larry Walker and Martha Whittington, each winners in the MOCA GA Working Artist Project, a 5-year-old program that has helped stem the tide of local talent leaving for greener pastures.

Through Aug. 24. 75 Bennett St. in the TULA Art Center. 404-367-8700,

"Drawing Inside the Perimeter"

Working with a $50,000 bequest from Atlanta art dealer and patron Judith Alexander to buy works by Georgia artists, High Museum contemporary art curator Michael Rooks decided not to spend it on just one or a few paintings and sculptures, focusing instead on the relatively affordable medium of drawings.

The collection he gathered with Alexander’s friend, independent Atlanta curator Marianne Lambert, grew to more than 50 works that represent intriguing and divergent directions in metro Atlanta contemporary art-making. Their collecting grew into the showcase exhibit “Drawing Inside the Perimeter,” featuring 55 works by 41 artists, that opens June 29 at the High.

Rooks and Lambert especially wanted to reflect the burgeoning number of emerging artists in the city, many recent graduates of the Savannah College of Art and Design and Georgia State University art programs, thus “Drawing” marks the first museum show for roughly 60 percent of the included artists.

Through Sept. 22. 1280 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-733-4200,

“Summer Swan Invitational”

Lambert also is the art hunter behind the Swan Coach House Gallery’s “Summer Swan Invitational” showcasing contemporary Southern pottery and handmade objects.

The show features 25 potters and 22 object makers, only two not from Georgia. Lambert assembled some 500 pieces so that, unlike typical Swan exhibits, buyers can take their purchases home with them instead of waiting for the show’s end. As they do, new works are being put on view.

Through Aug. 10. 3130 Slaton Drive, Atlanta. 404-266-2636,

“Girl With a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings From the Mauritshuis”

Finally if you want to see those Dutch masters at the High before checking out Georgia’s finest, here’s the scoop: “Girl With a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings From the Mauritshuis” opens on June 23. Imported from the Netherlands’ Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, the museum-in-a-palace in The Hague, the exhibit features 45 paintings, including four by Rembrandt.

Through Sept. 29. 1280 Peachtree St. N.E., Atlanta. 404-733-4200,

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