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Talk of the Town - Resident artist October 12 2005

Lloyd Benjamin's home includes Get This Gallery

Artist Lloyd Benjamin lives in a new loft, though to look at it, you'd never know. The three-story structure combines both classic and modern architecture. Benjamin joined the growing number of young artists living in Castleberry Hill last February and embarked upon the task of opening his gallery space, Get This.

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Drawing upon the old-fashioned storefront concept, Benjamin's gallery begins on his street-level garage and spills into the second story. Just as many shop owners did at the turn of the century, Benjamin's living quarters are above his gallery, primarily in the third story of his Peters Street loft.

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Get This has been the site of three exhibits since its opening. Featured art has included color woodcuts, photography, stencil work and origami by artists ranging from the self-taught to the classroom educated. The exhibit on view during the Castleberry Hill Loft Tour, which offers a peek into the private lofts and public gallery spaces in the neighborhood, is War and Health, featuring paintings and origami by Nate Moore.

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What do you see as the purpose of your gallery?

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I see my gallery as a launch pad into the world of young emerging artists. I want to show people's work that I believe is good as well as let them have the experience of having their work shown and having a healthy turnout. The gallery will go as long as I live here and am able to ensure that it's worth the artist's time to show here.

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What kind of art do you focus on?

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It's all contemporary art, but I try to keep it fresh. Most of the artists I choose don't have that decorator aesthetic. It's all pretty unique work. All of the artists I have shown I've chosen because I liked their art and thought it should be shown in Atlanta.

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What does having a gallery in the Castleberry Hill's art stroll entail?

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It involves opening your home. Most of the galleries, aside from a few, are live-work spaces. I am lucky to have my living quarters on the third floor, but sometimes you have to walk through the living area to get to the gallery.

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Do you show your own work?

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No, I keep my work and the gallery totally separate. I do silk-screen and stencil work based on images and pictures that I have collected from traveling freely around the U.S., riding freight trains. I don't know if I'd be doing this gallery if I had not traveled so much. I think it really shaped me, and especially my mind-set that anything is possible with any means.

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Where do you show your work?

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Right now I have a few pieces up at Asada, a restaurant on DeKalb Avenue.

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cityhomes@creativeloafing.com

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The Castleberry Hill Tour of Lofts takes place Fri., Oct. 14, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sat., Oct. 15, noon-5 p.m. $15. For more info, visit www.castleberryhill.org.




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