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FLORIDA STORIES: A Conversation with Author Lauren Groff and Visual Artist Allison Janae Hamilton Moderated by Virginia Prescott and Hosted by The Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition Presented by The Helis Foundation
November 29 • 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
We are honored to partner with The Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition, The Helis Foundation, and Ogden Museum of Southern Art for this event.
Doors at 6 p.m. | Conversation at 6:30 p.m.
Internationally acclaimed visual artist Allison Janae Hamilton and bestselling author Lauren Groff both draw inspiration from the state of Florida to create poignant, affecting works that address the past, the present and the ever-changing landscapes of the region.
In celebration of Hamilton’s sculpture, Love is like the sea…., currently on view on the Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition presented by The Helis Foundation, join us for a conversation between these two women exploring their influences, inspiration and relationships with the environment, culture and climate of the American South.
This conversation is free, but registration is required.
About Allison Janae Hamilton
Allison Janae Hamilton (b. 1984 in Kentucky, raised in Florida) has exhibited widely across the U.S. and abroad. Her work has been the subject of institutional solo exhibitions at the Georgia Museum of Art, the Joslyn Art Museum, Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) and Atlanta Contemporary, as well as a commissioned solo project with Creative Time. Her sculpture, Love is like the sea… (2023) is currently on view on the Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition presented by The Helis Foundation in New Orleans, LA. Select recent group exhibitions include there is this We, Sculpture Milwaukee; The Dirty South: Contemporary Art, Material Culture, and the Sonic Impulse, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (traveling); Shifting Horizons, Nevada Museum of Art; Enunciated Life, California African Art Museum; More, More, More, TANK Shanghai; and Indicators: Artists on Climate Change, Storm King Art Center. Work by the artist is held in public collections such as the Hood Museum of Art, The Menil Collection, Nasher Museum of Art, Nevada Museum of Art and Speed Museum of Art, among others. Hamilton has participated in a range of fellowships and residencies, including at the Whitney Independent Study Program, New York, NY; the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY; and Fundación Botín, Santander, Spain. She is the recipient of the Creative Capital Award and the Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant. Hamilton holds a PhD in American Studies from New York University and an MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University. She lives and works in New York.
About Lauren Groff
Lauren Groff is the “New York Times” bestselling author of four novels, “The Monsters of Templeton,” “Arcadia,” “Fates and Furies” and “Matrix,” as well as the celebrated short-story collections “Delicate Edible Birds and Florida,” a 2018 National Book Award finalist. She graduated from Amherst College and has an MFA in fiction from the University of Wisconsin Madison.
“Fates and Furies” was a “New York Times” bestseller, a finalist for the National Book Award, and Amazon’s #1 Best Book of the Year in 2015. It is an exhilarating novel about marriage, creativity, art and perception, and has garnered tremendous critical acclaim. Her followup book, “Florida,” was similarly acclaimed and was nominated for the 2018 National Book Award and won the prestigious annual Story Prize. Her latest novel, “Matrix“, was an instant “New York Times” bestseller, winner of the 2022 Joyce Carol Oates Prize, and a finalist for the 2021 National Book Award. She also edited a collection of stories by author Nancy Hale entitled “Where the Light Falls,” bringing a forgotten master of the short story back into the literary conversation.
Lauren Groff’s work has appeared in a number of magazines, including “The New Yorker,” “Harper’s,” and “The Atlantic,” and in several of the annual “The Best American Short Stories” anthologies. Groff’s fiction has won the Paul Bowles Prize for Fiction, the Medici Book Club Prize, the PEN/O. Henry Award, and the Pushcart Prize, and has been shortlisted for the Orange Prize for New Writers and a finalist for the “L.A. Times” Book Prize. She lives in Gainsville, Florida with her husband and two sons.
About Virginia Prescott
Virginia Prescott is an Edward R. Murrow and Gracie Award-winning radio and podcast producer and host. She’s currently President of School of Humans, and producer of iHeart Media’s hit podcasts Hell and Gone and Unreformed.
Her history in public media began at WWOZ Community Radio in New Orleans. From WWOZ, Prescott went on to host Georgia Public Broadcasting’s On Second Thought and Atlanta History Center’s Virtual Author Talks, then New Hampshire Public Radio’s (NHPR) Word of Mouth, Writers on A New England Stage, the Top Ten Podcasts Civics 101 and The 10-Minute Writers Workshop. Prior to joining NHPR, she was editor, producer and director on NPR’s On Point and Here & Now, and Director of Interactive media for New York Public Radio.
Throughout her radio career, Virginia has worked to build sustainable independent radio in the developing world and has trained journalists in post-conflict zones from Sierra Leone to the Balkans. As an Audio Artist, she has created sound and story installations for Project Row Houses, the Arsenal Center for the Arts and MIT’s Center for Reflective Community Practice. She was a member of the Peabody Award-winning production team for Jazz from Lincoln Center with Ed Bradley and the recipient of a Loeb Fellowship at Harvard University.
Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition presented by The Helis Foundation (PCSE) is the South’s leading outdoor, rotating public sculpture exhibition located in the heart of downtown New Orleans spanning Poydras Street between Convention Center Boulevard and North Galvez Street. Since 2013, PCSE has featured over 40 sculptures along the Poydras Corridor, showcasing the work of renowned local, regional and international artists. The vision of PCSE is to increase accessibility to interesting and inspiring sculpture for the residents of and visitors to one of New Orleans’ most highly trafficked thoroughfares.
PCSE is a collaboration between The Helis Foundation, Ogden Museum of Southern Art and the City of New Orleans Department of Parks and Parkways. The Helis Foundation is the exhibition’s sole funder.
As the South’s largest rotating public sculpture exhibition, with fourteen installations currently on view, Poydras Corridor Sculpture Exhibition presented by The Helis Foundation reinforces New Orleans’ status as a leading international destination for the visual arts; creates economic and programming opportunities for a diversity of artists; and beautifies and provides visual interest to the heavily-trafficked vehicular and pedestrian artery connecting the Arts District, Central Business District and historic French Quarter.