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Artists and Exhibits

About The Defoor Centre Visual & Performing Arts Program

It is the goal of the Defoor Centre’s Visual and Performing Arts Program to support Atlanta’s artists and arts organizations. The Defoor Centre Artist Galleries curates art in all mediums, boasting an inspiring collection of works by established and aspiring local artists.  Unlike most local galleries, art on consignment at Defoor is marketed to support the endeavors of the artist. With free public exhibitons scheduled every other month, the community-at-large is invited to share and buy reasonably priced artwork.

 The Defoor Centre has four exhibition spaces, a stage for performances, a classroom for workshops and a full-service bar & café.  There are three types of exhibitions programs:

  • Exhibitions curated by the Defoor Centre
  • Exhibitions by local curators
  • Artists & arts organizations and exhibitions held in conjunction with the college program Art Undiscovered.

The Forum Gallery hosts solo and group exhibitions (6 weeks) curated by the Defoor Centre or guest curators. The Forum Gallery Stage has seating for 300+ which is perfect for music, theatre, and dance performances. The Forum Gallery also hosts special events and the Art Undiscovered program’s juried exhibition.

Gatsby Gallery hosts short-term exhibitions (2 - 4 weeks) featuring students currently enrolled in local college degreed art programs. Students develop professional skills through participation in the exhibition process. The Defoor Centre collaborates with local college professors, curators, and gallery owners to develop the Art Undiscovered Program, which culminates in a juried exhibition.

Encore Gallery will host guest curators, artists and arts organizations for solo and group exhibitions (6 weeks).

Defoor Bar Gallery hosts primarily solo exhibitions (4-6weeks).

Defoor Classroom is available for an hourly rate. If classroom is rented for 4 times a month or more, a 10% discount is available. Rehearsal space for music, theatre and dance groups is available on a short-term basis.

Are you an art lover?  Come to our next Art Show.

Art you an artist?  Please contact the Arts Program Director to book an exhibition or make an appointment for a private showing at the Defoor Centre. You may submit the "Call for Artist Entries Form" here

  • Complete and sign the contract.
  • Submit a bio.
  • Submit digital images of your work.
  • Submit an inventory sheet at the time of installation.
  • Submit art pieces prepared for hanging.

The Defoor Centre commission split is 60% of purchase price to artist, 40% to the Defoor Centre. All opening receptions for exhibitions occur on Thursday nights.

About the Artist: Russell Jones

Russell Carter Jones was born in Athens, Georgia, and started painting at age 12. He received a full scholarship to study art at the University of Georgia, and later studied art at the University of California, Berkeley, before returning to Georgia.

While in California, Carter worked for “Filmore West” drawing and coloring rock concert posters. Since then his work has evolved into more serious works of impressionism and abstract expressionism.  Over the years, Carter has exhibited and sold his paintings throughout the United States.

In 2013, Carter lost 100% of his vision due to macular degeneration and was declared legally blind.  After a few months in the dark, Carter decided to undergo experimental procedures, which allowed him to regain 10 to 15% vision in one eye.  He continues to undergo this somewhat painful treatment to this day.  Russell Carter Jones now values his ability to paint more than ever, and has a renewed inspiration to create new paintings.

About the Artist: Sabre Esler

Sabre Esler is an Atlanta based artist. Her current work is focused on the architecture of thought. She is fascinated with how the mind works; the connections and pathways that lead to convoluted results. She seeks to understand why people think the way they do. How decisions add up to a web of thought. Collective thought forms societal shifts. Her process starts in sculpture and installation exploring the patterns of decision making. She translates the sculptures into other formats, to continue to manipulate the patterns and hierarchy of the structures. She is not as interested in a particular medium, but how to describe the hierarchy of pattern that the mind creates by paradigms of thought.

Her work has been showcased in solo shows in Boston, Knoxville, Charleston and Atlanta. Alexandria Museum, LA awarded her an Honorable Mention in 2016. Also, in 2016, she was accepted to a juried show at Art Basel, Miami. Lelia Mordoch (Paris, Miami) took her pieces for a group show in April, 2017. This winter she will again show her work at Art Basel. She completed her first site specific installation with Hambidge Creative Hive. Her work is in permanent collections at SunTrust, The Federal Reserve Bank, Ritz Carlton, Miami University, Tufts University, Hilton Hotels, to name a few.

Sabre, an Ohio native, graduated from Miami University, Oxford OH with a BFA in graphic design/illustration and a minor in biology in 1987. She continued her art career, first in advertising and design and began painting in 1995. She completed her MFA in painting from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Atlanta in 2015.

About the Artist: Anna Jensen

"My paintings are psychological landscapes and emotionally complex narratives. I combine references to art history, pop culture, natural science and personal chronicles to represent the conflicts of life. The titles are important elements. Like me the stories are at once funny and sad."
-Anna Jensen

Thoughts from comrades:
"Anna Jensen's paintings are a synthesis of classical and abstract figuration. Her body of work is inspired by moments of both trauma and exaltation. They are the fruit of years of rigorous and concerted research conducted in her home of the American South. With immense drive and rare sensitivity, Anna demonstrates the power of an individual to prevail through challenges and difficulty through creative transfiguration. Adorned with rigid masks and psychologically rich themes, these entirely personal and individual works take us on a journey through childhood, daily violence and action scenes.  Her skillful combination of abstract and graphic art is reminiscent of France’s own “Figuration Narrative” a movement from the 60s and 70s, which was a reaction to English and American Pop Art. Jensen explains: "The more personal art is, the more universal". This unassuming yet genuine formula allows me to understand why I love her work and why I’m hooked on it."
-Dimitri Yin, artist/curator

"When you've suffered unspeakable transgressions as a young person, struggled with serious addiction and self-destructive issues, as well as the sudden loss of a parent, that's gotta destroy your faith in the world around you, and violate your attitude toward the world inside you. Even if you were to grow into the most hateful person, you would be deserving of everyone's love and compassion. But instead, if you can somehow heroically survive it, become a kind person who can reflect on your own suffering, and do things to express your sympathy for others who have suffered--you are worthy of our worship.

The first time I saw Anna Jensen's work, I was intrigued by the psychological tension therein. I didn't know what, but these paintings were definitely about something. When I met her in person, I felt a bit put off by what I perceived to be her guarded demeanor--that was a big mistake on my part. As I began to see more of her work, I felt an artistic kinship--like me, Anna packs her canvas with a circus of fun stuff, and gives painstaking obsession to details that would likely never be appreciated or noticed. My sense of affinity did not end there. I saw that, behind the disarming atmosphere of fun, humor, self-obsession, and sexuality, there was deep pain, a pure desire for love, and a tenderness for all earthlings (as is so heartbreakingly plaintive in her little birds). I had to get to know Anna better as a person.

As with her art, behind Anna's guarded facade, I quickly found a sweet, delightful human being, but one who has suffered deeply, and who fights everyday to turn her suffering into art, therein seeking catharsis which, she hopes may help others heal. My own wounds have certainly found comfort and encouragement in her work. I don't think worship is too big a word to describe what I feel for Anna and her art."
-Taiyo LaPaix, artist/curator

About the Artist: Lindsey L. Tucker

My work focuses on capturing and connecting with our physical world and the people around us. I work in an array of subjects and materials in order explore a constant theme from different perspectives.

Connection, whether that be to a person or place, comes through understanding. It is human nature to feel connected to people or places that we understand on a physical, emotional, or spiritual level. My art encourages connection and understanding to the world and people around us by inviting the viewer into an active role in exploring, interpreting, and consuming the work. My art investigates the practice of letting go and accepting imperfection. As someone who tends to strive for perfection, I have come to hold on to imperfections that come when creating a piece. I allow those imperfections space to exist and find beauty within that imperfection.

In a time when our culture encourages quick consumption of information and images, I savor opportunities to see and understand something as it truly is, to notice what might otherwise be ignored in a passing glance. My paintings encourage slow enjoyment. They become a space where viewers can, if they choose, become more connected - to each other, nature, themselves, the earth, their spirituality. I create art as a way to better understand my own connections to the world in which we live and want viewers to do the same. Only we can choose to feel these connections, expand our knowledge, and change ourselves. Spending time with art to feel, understand, and see how it affects us, that is where changes begin to take hold.

About the Artist: Yari Mena

My body of work is essentially based on three things I lost this year; some are evident while others are left up to interpretation. My works revolve around these losses as well as the ideas of grief, hope, moving, the memories we keep related to these losses and how time can alter parts of those memories and leave other parts intact.

It is my personal belief that human memory is, at times, unreliable, and that we can trick ourselves into “rewriting” certain memories- as well as do so unintentionally. I’m guilty of using this as an unhealthy coping mechanism by rewriting sad or uncomfortable events in my life in order to make them less painful and allow me to move on easier. The processes used for some of these pieces involved layering, burning, sanding, painting over, and rearranging in order to become visualizations of my own frantic attempts to forget certain memories and hold on to others. My goal was to show these both ideas in plain sight through imagery and symbols as well to bury them under layers for viewers to sift through.

About the Artist: Marcus E. Bishop

Marcus E. Bishop is native of Mississippi and currently resides in Atlanta Ga. He received his BFA in painting from Jackson State University in 1999, a BFA in Fashion Design and Fashion Marketing from American InterContinental University in 2001 and a Masters of Fine Arts from SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design) 2013.

For eight years he worked as a Kindergarten educator for Atlanta Public Schools and three years as a Middle School Visual Arts Teacher for DeKalb County Schools. Bishop is constantly creating meaningful images by using multiple mediums such as; collage, photography, acrylics, pastels, watercolors and charcoal etc.

Additionally, he finds his inspiration reading books, watching documentaries, everyday surroundings, his students, people he may encounter on the streets of Atlanta, Ga. Bishop uses many techniques to enhance his artwork from its original state to a concept of historic meaning.

Finally, his ultimate goal encompasses tackling the sublime or insignificant and elevating the subjects to reflect dignity and substance.