We visited ATL artist Lela Brunet recently - what a treat. We were interested in meeting her to learn more about her striking, figurative work. We left with a new friend and a feeling of excitement about the groundswell of creative energy that can be felt in ATL these days. Lela and her friends are artists who are bridging the gap between street art and fine art, doing their own thing and finding great opportunities for support to continue to do so. Lela spent as much time talking about her people as she did her own work, so as a nod to each of them, their links are shared below.
A recent graduate of Kennesaw State University (College of the Arts) Lela just moved into a new studio space in Mutiny Artwrx, which was developed and founded by JP McChesney, an artist himself. You may also know him from his other endeavors over at Paris on Ponce where Mutiny artists are offered a space to show their work. Lela's studio mate is another artist we have been following, Megan Mosholder, who sounds like she is having an incredibly busy/successful year. We also met Ray Geier, who dropped by the studio during our visit and told us all about the street painting he had completed around East Atlanta Village. He led us through all the great things happening with Elizabeth Jarrett's performance space Downtown Players Club and collaborative entity Deer Bear Wolf, as well as with Notch8 Gallery which opened last year in South Atlanta.
Although we were largely in the dark about most of those, Lela exhibits her work at Kai Lin Gallery and Kibbee Gallery, two venues we know and love. She was very gracious in speaking about Yu Kai and Ben Goldman, respective curators of those spaces and their support and encouragement of her as an artist. Prior to becoming her gallerist, she explained that Kai recommended her to Orpheus Brewing and she has since designed imagery for their labels, painted on site, etc.
In addition to her studio practice and pushing forward into a new body of work, Lela has done murals with Moreland Avenue Mural Project, Forward Warrior, Phoenix Fest and Living Walls.
What is she working on now? She just collaborated with several other ATL artists to coat the exterior walls of Hodge Podge Coffeehouse & Gallery in art and it looks great. She is also preparing to work on a mural for the new Mailchimp offices within Ponce City Market.
Basically, pretty soon you won't be able to drive around ATL without seeing Lela's work. In the meantime, here is a sampling of our favorite figurative works (available through Kai Lin Gallery).