Eyedrum returns!

Eyedrum Art & Music Gallery has announced a new location opening in early 2021 at 515 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd., in a historic industrial corridor near the West End, Pittsburgh, Mechanicsville, and Adair Park.

In a press release issued September 29, Eyedrum states that this new location will feature a “flexible 3,000 square-foot interior including a small dedicated gallery, an outdoor stage, and a courtyard for programming.”

The press release also states that Eyedrum will carry on with its legacy as “a home to underserved, emerging artists, musicians, filmmakers, and writers. In times of uncertainty, members of the community need arts spaces now more than ever.”

In June of 2018, Eyedrum, along with fellow DIY arts and music space Mammal were forced to close after a nearby fire on Broad Street SW left one man dead. Soon after, both business were forced to leave their Downtown locations permanently.

Two years later, Eyedrum’s announcement comes as a beacon of hope for an underserved community of artists and musicians. In a 2011 CL cover story that I co-authored with Wyatt Williams, title Eyedrum: An Oral History, we described that scene as “those willing to embrace music and arts that are as contemptuous as they were conscientious. Indie rock acts as varied as Oneida, Don Caballero, and the Black Heart Procession to Simeon Coxe of the Silver Apples to DJ Cut Chemist all performed there amid exhibitions with titles such as The Penis Show, Switch, and Liquid Smoke.”

With the recent closure of the Bakery in Oakland City, Atlanta needs a venue that this community can call home, now more than ever.

515 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd.

Eyedrum’s new home sits adjacent to Parts Authority, an automobile parts and supplies facility.

Deisha Oliver, a member of Eyedrum’s board of directors, says the gallery and performance venue is renting “a 3,000 square foot portion of 515. The building owner has been so kind as to do the needed build out of our portion of that space.”

To keep Eyedrum’s endeavors moving forward, an effort to raise funds is underway, with plans to facilitate virtual programming, and to support the staff and curatorial budget for the next five years. A new website is planned for launch soon, which will offer membership options.

In the meantime, click here to donate to Eyedrum.

More information will be available here as soon as it becomes available.

Read more about the history of Eyedrum.

Eyedrum: An Oral History by Chad Radford and Wyatt Williams 
Eyedrum Turns 20 by Chad Radford and Doug DeLoach
Breathing new life into South Downtown: Can Atlanta’s arts communities survive and thrive in an area primed for drastic change? by Sean Keenan
Can Downtown’s art scene survive developers? “We’re faced with a challenge posed by a city developing too quickly” by Sean Keenan
Downtown DIY heads out: Mammal Gallery and Eyedrum face the end of an era by Chad Radford and Sean Keenan

Gallery 992 Improv. Jam, every Sunday evening

Photo by Chad Radford

Gallery 992‘s Sunday night free improv jams are back!

For the time being, every Sunday evening from 6-10 p.m., the weekly jam has moved just a few doors down to the lot near the corner of Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. and Peeples Street, where there’s plenty of space to get spaced out. Under the direction of alto saxophone player Quinn Mason and percussionist Dallas Dawson, an assemblage of the city’s finest players lock into each other for a massive and seemingly telepathic group improv blast before opening up the stage. They’ll play for as long as the law allows—the noise ordinance kicks in at 10 p.m.

In this new, temporary outdoor setting, the weekly jam has taken on a whole new vibe, summoning a rejuvenated sense of community spirit in the West End. These performances are about catharsis, purgation, and finding mental and spiritual balance in the shadow of a world in turmoil.

Witnessing so much energy, and engaging with live music on such visceral and cerebral levels, after so many months spent in lock down is a powerful and emotionally riveting experience that’s not to be taken lightly—you need it more than you know.

Bring a lawn chair—it’s outside, but wearing a mask and maintaining that six-feet of social distance makes everyone feel a safer, and little more comfortable.