Meetups

If you don’t want to wait around all year to talk about Atlanta, we hope you will consider joining us for one of our quarterly meet-ups. These quarterly meetings showcase Atlanta-focused projects and bring together a group of folks interested in our city. We will provide a few snacks. Buy your own drinks. See below for more on previous symposia and meetups, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to learn more about upcoming events with ATLS and around Atlanta.

Summer 2018

Date: August 7, 2018

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

The Great Speckled Bird

Traci Drummond and Andy Reisinger, Georgia State University

Atlanta’s alternative newspaper from 1968-1976, The Great Speckled Bird provided information about the interlocking and interdependent social movements of the 60s and 70s, including civil rights, women’s liberation, lesbian and gay liberation, and anti-war activism. The paper also focused attention on subjects largely uncovered by the mainstream media: police brutality, urban development, public education, labor, the environment, the counterculture, local arts and entertainment, and local and international politics.  Traci and Andy will discuss the history of The Bird, the origins and evolution of Georgia State’s digitization and oral history projects to preserve and document the history of the Bird, the community-based collaboration of these projects, and things they’ve learned about the paper, the people involved in producing the paper, and the history of Atlanta during the 1960s and 1970s through these projects. 

Atlanta Map Room

Yanni Loukissas, Georgia Tech

The Atlanta Map Room is a public space for creating interpretive maps of the city, from a combination of contemporary data, historical documents, and personal experiences. These maps are large-scale physical artifacts, collaboratively-made, and meant for exhibition. The Atlanta Map Room builds upon the recent success of the St. Louis Map Room, a project lead by artist Jer Thorp in conjunction with the Center of Creative Arts. The Atlanta team is collaborating with Thorp to develop a unique iteration of the project in Atlanta, meant to explore invisible tensions in the city, between its rapid development as a commercial hub and its long history as a center for civil rights and culture in the Southeast. The overarching goal of the Atlanta Map Room is to investigate what it means to visualize civic dialog around data. How can the seemingly mundane details of property tax assessments, building permits, and community surveys become the source materials for acts of collaborative creative expression?

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)
7:15 – Presentations and Q&A
8:30 – Networking, chit chatting, order another drink

Past Meetups

Spring 2018

Date: March 26, 2018

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

For this event, we welcome the director and two alumni of Common Good Atlanta, a college-in-prison program, as well as Andy Ditzler, a curator and film scholar digging into the archive of The American Music Show, a beloved Atlanta public access television show.

Common Good Atlanta

Bill Taft, Thayer Carter, and Tariq Baiyina

Bill Taft is co-director of Common Good Atlanta (CGA), a college-in-prison program that has offered literature, writing, history, art, and math courses at a men’s prison outside Atlanta since 2008. Bill will offer an introduction to Common Good Atlanta’s program and its recent expansion to a women’s prison in Hartwell, Georgia, and a transition center in southeast Atlanta. Joining Bill for the presentation will be two alumni of the CGA program at Phillips State Prison: Thayer Carter and Tairq Baiyina. Thayer and Tariq will discuss their experiences as incarcerated students and returning citizens who have been released from the prison system and are now actively engaged in their Atlanta-area communities. Tariq works with the Inner-city Muslim Action Network and is developing their Green Re-entry Program. Thayer has submitted his application to GSU’s Masters in Social Work program for the fall.

The American Music Show: How To Live In (And Archive) The City

Andy Ditzler

Through twenty-five years of weekly local public access television broadcasts, The American Music Show reflected its origins in an unlikely conjunction of Civil Rights history, Atlanta politics, mixed gay and straight social networks, and musical subcultures. Stars such as RuPaul, James Bond (Atlanta city council member and brother of Julian Bond), and characters such as the singing Peek sisters presented subversive takes on Atlanta and rural Georgia. But in addition to its forward-looking form of entertainment, the show acted as an informal archive of subcultural Atlanta. Video segments documented nightlife and performance venues, cruising sites in Piedmont Park, and now-lost print materials such as club fliers and Polaroid photos of the scene. The barely controlled chaos of the show’s archival methods (both onscreen and as a videotape archive now housed in Emory’s Rose Library) reflects a distinctively queer form of archiving – one that is true to the unruliness of its subject and materials.

Andy Ditzler, who is curating the first major retrospective of The American Music Show, will present clips and a discussion of the show.

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)

7:15 – Presentations and Q&A

8:30 – Networking, chit chatting, order another drink

Fall 2017

Date: September 21, 2017

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

ATL Maps

What happens when you layer a science project on top of a walking tour on top of an art experiment on top of an archival map on top of demographic data on top of a memoir? What if the archives of multiple universities and other institutions could be accessed on one platform and layered with the projects, stories, and data from researchers, teachers, students, and community groups? The ATLMaps.org project attempts to answer these questions. The platform, a collaboration between Georgia State and Emory University, combines archival maps, geospatial data visualization, and user contributed multimedia location pinpoints to promote investigation into any number of issues about Atlanta. 

At the event, we will highlight new features on the site and have speakers on some of our new layers including:

Home Owners Loan Corporation – the neighborhood grading system in the 30s that led to red lining
 
Downtown Geology Walking Tour – a digitized version of a tour of the types of stone in downtown buildings
 
Religious Sounds – GSU’s Religious Studies department has added many more locations to their audio recordings of religious spaces
 
Stone Mountain Granite – a map of many of the structures in Atlanta built with Stone Mountain Granite
 
Georgia Historical Markers –  the text for all the Fulton and Dekalb County markers
 
West End Cultural Sites – students from Booker T. Washington High created several video clips about important sites in their community
 
Achieving Blankness – a map of Hannah Palmer’s article in Art Papers about biking around the airport’s loop road

 

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)

7:15 – Presentations and Q&A

8:30 – Networking, chit chatting, order another drink

Summer 2017

Date: May 30, 2017

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

The Past, Present, and Future of Public & Affordable Housing in Atlanta 

For this event, we will show a couple of short films from the Atlanta Housing Authority from 1940 about the construction of Atlanta’s public housing. This will be followed by a panel discussion about the past, present, and future state of public and affordable housing in Atlanta. Our speakers:

Katie Schank’s current work explores the vital role of images and public relations in the history of Atlanta’s public housing and investigates how the city’s public housing was not only a physical place and a social program but how it became a cultural commodity. This past year, she was a Visiting Fellow at Emory University’s James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference. 

Katherine Hankins is an urban geographer and an Associate Professor in the Department of Geosciences at Georgia State University. She examines urban change and how social and spatial inequalities are expressed and contested in the urban landscape. In her work, she’s examined large urban development projects, such as the role of public housing and practice in shaping Atlanta’s social and physical landscapes at both neighborhood and metropolitan scales.   
 
Paul Vranicar is Chief Policy Officer of the Atlanta Housing Authority, where he oversees the Policy, Strategy, and Innovation department, as well as External Affairs. He is tasked with developing innovative new strategies to address the affordability crisis in Atlanta. Prior to joining AHA, Paul practiced law at Holland & Knight LLP, where he represented clients such as the Atlanta Public Schools, Grady Hospital, MARTA, the City of Atlanta, and other governmental and non-profit organizations. He has served as Vice-Chair of the Fulton County – City of Atlanta Land Bank Authority, and as Secretary of the Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority.
 

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)
7:15 – Palmer films 
7:45 – Panel discussion and Q&A
8:30 – Networking, chit chatting, order another drink

Winter 2017

Date: February 6, 2017

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

Come see our progress on the Unpacking Manuel’s project and tell your stories about the Tavern. Manuel’s is a living archive of the history, culture, and politics of Atlanta. Over the next couple of years we will be collecting community memories and student projects to curate digital visualizations of the establishment before the renovation.

At the event, you will be able to try on an oculus rift so you can check out our Virtual Reality demo. We will have some google cardboards with us so you can experience the 360 video tour of the renovation on your phone. You can also see the high-resolution gigapan images of the Tavern’s walls we have completed.

Know something about the Tavern’s history or one of the artifacts on the wall? Have a memory about the bar you want to share? We will have several stations to record your stories.

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)
7:15 – A quick presentation about the project and future plans
7:45 – Explore the demos and share your stories

Summer 2016

Date: Tuesday, June 28th

Location: Elevator Factory, 437 Memorial Drive SE, Atlanta, GA 30312

Time: 7 pm

This meetup will focus on the development of the Memorial Corridor.

Our speakers:

Greg Giuffrida is the Memorial Drive Corridor Executive, a new role that grew out of a 2014 studio project performed by graduate students in Georgia Tech’s School of City and Regional Planning. It is funded by a range of stakeholders on Memorial Drive and hosted by Central Atlanta Progress. Greg’s job is to work with neighborhoods, public agencies, and property owners to make Memorial Drive a safer, more efficient, and more inviting connection for Southeast Atlanta. He will discuss the following: how an academic project evolved into an applied role; the many political and bureaucratic layers that shape the physical condition of Memorial Drive; and real-time planning in a rapidly changing urban environment.

Chris Appleton is co-founder and Executive Director of WonderRoot. As a Reynoldstown homeowner, Director of a Memorial Drive-based organization, and member of the Reynoldstown Civic Improvement League Board of Directors, Chris has been actively engaged in the visioning for and development of Memorial Drive. Chris’ presentation will focus on the role arts & culture have played in the Memorial Drive communities and how WonderRoot is seeking to leverage the power of the arts to create a sense of place and mitigate the negative effects of gentrification.

The Plan:

7:00 – Grab some snacks (we will provide a few) and order a drink (that’s on you)

7:15 – Presentations and Q&A

8:30 – Networking, chit chatting, order another drink

 

Thank you Elevator Factory (437 Memorial Drive, behind Grant Park Octane) for hosting the event.

Winter 2015

Date: December 7, 2015

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

Join us in celebrating all of the accomplishments of 2015 and the new beginnings in 2016! Come and talk about Atlanta, ITP and OTP, reminisce with Manuel’s Tavern and share in the excitement of restorations, digital and physical.

Summer 2015

Date: August 13, 2015

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

Presentations:

Shannon Byrne / The World Comes to Stone Mountain, Summit of a New South

Fifty-two years after Martin Luther King, Jr. proclaimed, “Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia,” a diverse community thrives atop Stone Mountain, a mountain still considered emblematic of Old South racism by many, and its Confederate memorial carving and the Confederate flags flying at its base of have been the subject of recent controversy and renewed debate. A year ago, East Atlanta resident (and Stone Mountain native) Shannon Byrne created a website called I Am The Mountain, an online experience of Stone Mountain’s inspiring multicultural transformation. IAmTheMountain.org humbly attempts to illustrate freedom ringing at long last here and to celebrate all of the new faces that are reclaiming the mountain today, 100 years after the KKK declared Stone Mountain its 20th Century rebirth place on November 25, 1915. Such reclamation insists that a comprehensive history of the mountain itself be available to park goers, especially its most difficult chapter involving the Klan, along with better representation of the many other cultures’ historical experiences before, during, and after the Civil War era being memorialized, such as black Americans and Native Americans.

Ruth Dusseault / Unpacking Manuel’s Tavern

Students of history, political science, urban planning, sociology, film, architecture, computing and other disciplines will work independently or in the classroom to “unpack” the organic archive that has accumulated over 60 years on the walls of Manuel’s Tavern. GSU and Emory’s ECDS will create a gigapixel map like this one, of the tavern walls. Students can then choose images they wish to research and compose content for pop-out metadata pages including text, video, interviews and links to other sources from local, national and international archives.

Spring 2015

Date: April 6, 2015

Location: Manuel’s Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306

Time: 7 pm

Manuel's Tavern image, taken by Flickr user Lee Coursey. Used under a CC-BY license.
Manuel’s Tavern, taken by Flickr user Lee Coursey. Used under a CC-BY license.

3D Atlanta is a group of projects at Emory and Georgia State University working together to create an integrated, immersive, and interactive environment where users can explore our city in the 1920s.  Based on their richly detailed 1928 Atlanta city atlas, Emory’s Center for Digital Scholarship is building a 3D version of the city. Similarly, a team from GSU’s Student Innovation Fellowship program is creating city blocks from the same period, focused on the area around the downtown campus. Both projects are being built using the Unity gaming engine, which will allow them to come together as one environment. Additionally, artifacts from the Phoenix Project at GSU, a collection from the archaeological dig during the construction of MARTA, are currently being scanned as 3D objects and will be dropped in the Unity build out. Eventually the 3D Atlanta project will be integrated with the ATLmaps platform in much the same way that street view functions within Google maps.