Artists provide “outdoor living rooms” for Athens Community

Matthew Mazzotta sitting down in one of his “outdoor living rooms” at the Tate Student Plaza at UGA.

By: Ryan Sander

Athens, GA-  The Athens Cultural Affairs Commission is putting their ear on the ground this week, to find Athenian’s opinions on public art. With the help from artists Matthew Mazzotta and Todd Bressi, “outdoor living rooms” have popped up around the Athens Community this week. These living rooms are used as public forums for Mazzotta and Bressi to talk with both UGA students and Athens locals on what their thoughts are on the community. The idea behind bringing sofas, house plants, and other indoor furniture in an outdoor public space, is to create an environment where people feel comfortable. According to Bressi, this type of space yields the best results for real thoughts of a community.

“In many kinds of planning today its very hard to get people to participate in community processes, and we thought, why don’t we get artists to come up with ways to do that creatively. That will get people really excited and interested”.

The idea for this outdoor living space came when Mazzotta was an art student at the University of Chicago. What first started as an art experiment using thrown-out furniture, has turned into a practice to find ideas for future public art projects. The Athens Cultural Affairs Commission has brought in these two artists to help develop a public art plan for Athens, that locals and students alike would be excited about.

If you would like to participate in these outdoor living room talks, visit the Georgia Museum of Art at 10:00 am on Dec. 4, and Bishop Park Farmers Market at 11:00 am on Dec. 5.

For more information on the Athens Cultural Affairs Commission and their Master Plan for public art in Athens, Ga, check out this link.


The University of Georgia’s Ceramic Student Organization is holding their annual pottery sale this week. All types of handcrafted pottery will be on sale at the Lamar Dodd School of Art. Also the metal and jewelry student organization Phi Beata Heata will be selling their handmade necklaces, rings, bracelets, and more. All funds from this sale will go towards funding trips to different art symposiums across the country, and bring in guest lectures for the art students.

For more information on the University of Georgia’s jewelry and metal student organization Phi Beata Heata, checkout their Facebook page.



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