Centennial Yards Installs ‘Heartbeat ATL’ Art Light Exhibit in The Gulch

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The art installation is a precursor to what is planned to eventually fill these 50 acres: an ambitious mix of residential, office, retail, dining and entertainment spaces.

Brian McGowan, president of Centennial Yards, said he will see 8,000 new people living at Centennial Yards over the next decade.

“We are organizing a community,” he said. “We thought a great way to kick this off was with an art exhibit. We wanted to signal to Atlanta residents that life is coming back to downtown. As other neighborhoods begin to run out of space, economic momentum will shift south. We see seedlings all around us.

When people walk in and out of Mercedes-Benz Stadium or State Farm Arena for concerts or sporting events, Hammond said, the last place they would normally look is the Gulch. But this installation gives visitors food for thought if only for a few seconds.

In effect, Hammond said, the audience “defibrillates the heart and brings the heartbeat back.”

Legend

Artist Danny Davis helped transform the Gulch into a Heartbeat ATL art installation on Monday, January 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Artist Danny Davis helped transform the Gulch into a Heartbeat ATL art installation on Monday, January 31, 2022 in Atlanta.  People have described the area as a

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

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Artist Danny Davis helped transform the Gulch into a Heartbeat ATL art installation on Monday, January 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

The concept was born out of the pandemic itself.

“We wanted a project that had a humanistic quality,” Hammond said. “We wanted to allow people to give and share love without needing to physically interact.”

Hammond said the artists created the interactive feature from scratch. She wanted to show that art and technology can coexist.

“They must have made this up,” she said.

There’s also a bright mural on a bridge support wall designed by 35-year-old artist Lisette Correa, a Puerto Rican native who moved to Atlanta in 2018 and loves leopard prints.

“She’s a rising star in Atlanta,” Hammond said. “She comes from a fashion background and started creating these really beautiful, brightly colored murals.”

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Atlanta artist Lisette Correa in front of her glowing mural in the Gulch featuring monstera leaves. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Atlanta artist Lisette Correa in front of her glowing mural in the Gulch featuring monstera leaves.  CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

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Atlanta artist Lisette Correa in front of her glowing mural in the Gulch featuring monstera leaves. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

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Artists transform a Martin Luther King Jr. Drive bridge support into a projected artwork in the Gulch as part of the Heartbeat ATL art installation Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Artists transform a Martin Luther King Jr. Drive bridge support into a projected artwork in the Gulch as part of the Heartbeat ATL art installation Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta.  People have described the area as a

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

callout arrowLegend

Artists transform a Martin Luther King Jr. Drive bridge support into a projected artwork in the Gulch as part of the Heartbeat ATL art installation Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Correa, who goes by ARRRTADDICT as her stage name, said she was inspired by Atlanta’s greenery. “I’m Caribbean from South Florida,” she said. “We love forests and plants. When I think of a heartbeat, I think of nature. The heartbeat is nature.

This lightweight mural, dubbed “let go and grow,” features palm fronds and monstera leaves, a plant that Correa loves and regularly sheds to get stronger, Hammond said. It’s a metaphor for property abandoning its old desolate ways and blossoming into something new.

Correa has the light wall paint change colors over time. “It’s very calming,” she said. “It represents chakra healing. I am a fan of chromotherapy. The light transition was very important to me.

Hammond’s group also developed other notable art-focused events in Atlanta. In 2018, his group designed a pop-up ramen shop in the Old Fourth Ward with glow-in-the-dark food. Last year, it partnered with MARTA to create a large-scale lighting artwork with 60,000 roadside reflectors at the Grant Street Tunnel in Atlanta, near King Memorial Railroad Station.

Danny Davis, a production designer who helped Hammond design Heartbeat ATL, said balancing art and business wasn’t easy. “Managing that trade-off is really the whole game,” he said. “It’s that compromise. Courtney is an elegant bearer of this compromise. It empowers artists and achieves corporate goals. She can meet in the middle and still have a vision behind her.

McGowan already uses Hammond’s Dash Group for other art installations and exhibitions on the road.

“A lot of people just see art as a convenience,” McGowan said. “I see it as an economic driver. This creates jobs and economic impact. This makes places more desirable. And what’s most important to me about this project is that it’s true to Atlanta. At the end of the day, this should be a place you take friends and family to when they visit. We want Centennial Yards to be about art, culture, music, food and people.

Hammond said McGowan and others at Centennial Yards embraced his group’s ideas. “I work with a lot of developers,” Hammond said. “Not everyone is open to progressive work or experimentation. They were great working with them.

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211014-Atlanta-Centennial Yards President Brian McGowan, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and Richard Ressler, co-founder and director of CIM Group, are all smiles as they wait to take a photo after the press conference to announce the closing of a redevelopment deal for Centennial Yards in downtown Atlanta on Thursday, October 14, 2021. Ben Gray for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Credit: Ben Gray

211014-Atlanta-Centennial Yards President Brian McGowan, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and Richard Ressler, co-founder and director of CIM Group, are all smiles as they wait to take a photo after the press conference to announce the closing of a redevelopment deal for Centennial Yards in downtown Atlanta on Thursday, October 14, 2021. Ben Gray for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Credit: Ben Gray

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211014-Atlanta-Centennial Yards President Brian McGowan, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and Richard Ressler, co-founder and director of CIM Group, are all smiles as they wait to take a photo after the press conference to announce the closing of a redevelopment deal for Centennial Yards in downtown Atlanta on Thursday, October 14, 2021. Ben Gray for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Credit: Ben Gray

Credit: Ben Gray

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Artist/curator Courtney Hammond stands over part of the heartbeat-based art installation she helped create where Centennial Yards transformed the Gulch into an ATL Heartbeat art installation on Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Artist/curator Courtney Hammond stands over part of the heartbeat-based art installation she helped create where Centennial Yards transformed the Gulch into an ATL Heartbeat art installation on Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta.  People have described the area as a

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

callout arrowLegend

Artist/curator Courtney Hammond stands over part of the heartbeat-based art installation she helped create where Centennial Yards transformed the Gulch into an ATL Heartbeat art installation on Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 in Atlanta. People have described the area as a “hole in the heart” of Atlanta for years, a boring stretch of parking lots. Centennial Yards, the folks who are building a work-play-studio area there, have teamed up with local artists to create a heartbeat-based, base-based lighting installation that can be triggered by a website you can access by scanning the QR codes installed in the area.Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]

Credit: Curtis Compton / [email protected]


WHERE TO GO

Heartbeat ATL Light Art Installation, The Gulch, 7-11 p.m. through March 4, 2022. heartbeatatl.com.

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