Noelle Stiles danced Saturday night at Mint Gallery presented by Dance Truck and Mint in the Old 4th Ward.
"MINT Gallery and Dance Truck team up to present Portland dancemaker Noelle Stiles! Noelle Stiles makes her debut in the SE at MINT Gallery, with a multi-media performance designed for Dance Truck." from the Mint Blog.
Mint is in the industrial heart of the Old 4th Ward, smack on the west side of the Beltline. It's just south of Atlanta's Virginia Cotton Docks. You wouldn't know it's there, between Jack's Pizza and Studioplex.
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There is no heavy industry there anymore. The area features arts, artisans, entertainment, hospitality. I presume that even Sampson Street will shed is low rent soon and the artists will move elsewhere if they haven't already.
For now the setting remains industrial, dumpy, a bit dangerous, non-commercial, not a destination for most. The crowds are young, seeking something edgy; they are infallibly polite (to this old man), committed to Atlanta's art scene, and ready to enjoy themselves in the process.
Noelle Stiles' stage was a small flat-bed. Her work, "Here Begins a Region of Eclipse," seemed to be about the world between sleeping and waking.
There was sound and silence.
She danced with swimming elephants and without.
I'm with the crowd on the concrete in the dark. I don't think we all know what to make of the dance. But we do share a magic moment; we connect without speaking.
It was over in 20 minutes.
It's better than watching TV on Saturday night.
Here is Malina Rodriguez, the force behind Dance Truck. She's explaining that after a Dance Truck performance, people dance! Malina is one of the folks who make non-commercial art happen in Atlanta. I'm delighted to know her just a bit, to run into her from time to time.
After music, dance, a bit of magic, I headed into the gallery.
Mint trades in energetic art.
Art pieces on art walls.
My eye kept returning the the pyramids in desert colors.
I can't resist graphic fish shapes.
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