REMERGE Arts & Culture explores themes that impact belonging and flourishing in the historic Sweet Auburn neighborhood. It serves to collect and share the story of the neighborhood that produced such influential individuals as Martin Luther King Jr. and John Wesley Dobbs, while also contributing to the present and future story of Sweet Auburn.
Since 2018, REMERGE has hosted the Sweet Auburn Art Residency for Atlanta-based visual artists who are passionate about utilizing art to build community in the historic Sweet Auburn neighborhood. Our Artists-in-Residence for 2023-2024 are Sariyah Niko Benoit and Miranda Creagan.
Sariyah Niko Benoit (she/her), also known as Riyah Niko, is a painter rooted in Puerto Rican and Haitian heritage from The Bronx, NY, now living in Atlanta, GA. She is a painter, muralist, and horticultural educator, interested in ancestral ties, memories, and sustainability. She explores techniques using foraged, and hand-processed materials. Notable is her intensive Indigo Reduction Vat training with Aboubakar Fofana and a botanical dye residency on Georgia's Sapelo Island. Awards include Creative Action Fund and Create Change Fellowship from The Laundromat Project. Her pieces live in The Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice and The Yes Please Bookhouse and Lending Library. Among Riyah's twelve murals, four proudly adorn NYC public school walls.
Miranda Creagan is a multidisciplinary artist based in Atlanta, GA. Inspired by themes of relationships, home, and family, her work includes interactive sculptures, photography, as well as sound and video installations. Creagan's practice is centered on the ideas of intimacy and vulnerability. This began as an investigation of human interaction with her pedestal-shaped interactive sculptures. Disrupting the social norms of the traditional gallery space, Creagan's sculptures ask viewers to become risk takers and intimately engage with the pieces through vague visual clues. More recently, her sound and video installations investigate her personal and family relationships. Originally meant as a way to process grief, these installations developed into a way to honor her relationships both past and present.
Our permanent collection helps tell the story of the people and culture of the Sweet Auburn neighborhood. The collection is comprised of community engagement pieces, in which local artists invited participation from community members in the creative process. Most of the permanent collection has been designed through workshops and art-based community gatherings. This collection remains on display in the REMERGE Community Building Studio.
Contributing artists include:
The Sweet Auburn Timeline, unveiled at the Sweet Auburn 2021 Juneteenth Celebration, sets the development of the neighborhood against the background of the growth of the city of Atlanta, starting with the late 1800s. It notes the introduction and growth of landmark institutions and organizations, as well as key social and cultural events. The timeline invites guests to react to this history, to contribute their stories from the neighborhood, and to extend the timeline forward by sharing their hopes and dreams for its future.
The Sweet Auburn Timeline was designed by Sarah Lawrence and developed out of inspiration and insights shared by Royce Babble of Sweet Auburn Stories.
The Sweet Auburn Labyrinth was developed in early 2021 by Matthew Evans and Neka King. The labyrinth stands as a reflection point for visitors and guides them through our colorful neighborhood and eventually in to our building.
On January 16, 2022, we celebrated the labyrinth with guidance from Barrie Carter Gibby, certified advanced labyrinth facilitator, and reflections and thoughts from Matthew Evans and Neka King on what inspires them, what they gleaned from the collaboration, and how they are embracing the temporary nature of this piece.
Our art collection is housed within the REMERGE Community Building Studio at 340 Auburn Avenue.
Admission to view our collection is free but is open by appointment only. Schedule your visit through firstname.lastname@example.org.