A community that offers ever-expanding support for the creation and appreciation of contemporary art.

Founded in 1973 as Nexus, a grassroots artists’ cooperative, Atlanta Contemporary has since become one of the southeast’s leading contemporary art centers. We play a vital role in Atlanta’s cultural landscape by presenting over 200 consequential artists and creatives from the local, national, and international art scenes through our various exhibition, project spaces, and programs each year. We commission new works, paying particular attention to artists who have not had a significant exhibition in the Southeast. We organize over 125 programs annually including Contemporary Kids, Contemporary Cocktails, Contemporary Talks, and more! Atlanta Contemporary provides 13 on-site subsidized studio space to working artists through the Studio Artist Program.

By The Numbers | Artists Demographics

Race & Ethnicity – 56% BIPOC: 44% Black/African American; 7% Asian American; 5% LatinX and 44% White/Caucasian

Gender – 76% Female; 20% Male; 4% Gender Non-Conforming/Non-Binary

In our final month of the fiscal year, I write to you in celebration of what we’ve accomplished and praise the work of our artists, curators, community, and staff.

Thank you to those who have supported our mission – your gift validates the value and importance of contemporary art in Atlanta. Because of you, we have survived an unprecedented year. Survival of the arts, however, is not enough. We need additional strength to meet the next challenge, and the next.

We invite you to invest in us now and move us forward towards a more stable and resilient future.

The Pivot.

On Friday, March 13th, like so many of our peers, we shuttered our doors and moved everything to Zoom. It wasn’t without its hitches and glitches but between that Friday to when we re-opened (July 7), we presented 78 virtual programs.

The New HVAC.

We reopened our space with a state of the art, bi-polar ionization technology system to purify the entire interior of our museum’s air. We did this to keep you - and your loved ones - safe and healthy. We also implemented a more robust, nightly cleaning of the building and required the wearing of masks while on campus.

The Exhibitions & Programs

Since July 2020, we have distributed over $100,000 to support artists and their work.

In the Galleries, we opened 2 major exhibitions featuring 57 artists and 4 curators. Virtually and in person, we came together for over 50 programs including: Contemporary Talks, Contemporary Critique, Meditate & Create, Open Studios, Art Makes and a new Mural Project all to advocate and advance our community. In December, we launched the Nexus Fund as a Regional Regranting Partner with The Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts providing Emergency Relief Funds to 60 artists at $1,000 each.

And the work continues ...

A Pavilion to Perform

Born out of an inspiring idea and a willing partner, we bring you the Pavilion to Perform: a flexible performance space. Launched last Summer in partnership with Dance Canvas with the Choreographic Residency - we provided resources, space and time to dance artists in metro Atlanta. The works made were in response to COVID-19 and the need to address racism and inequality in our communities.

Re-launching Spring 2021 with partners Atlanta Shakespeare Co., La Femme Noir, and returning for a second season, Dance Canvas. We look forward to seeing you under the stars.

The art we have advanced, created, and presented affirms our belief that Art Is Essential. We need MaDora Frey’s Venus’s Looking Glass to demonstrate the monumentality of installation; Le’Andra LeSur’s There are other hues of blue to make us dance, listen, stop; or Shane Dedman’s project, PHYSICAL BODY OF WORK; a love letter to an evolving self, to envelop us.

Survival feels great and I appreciate all of you who helped. Today, as I look towards the future a $150,000 Resiliency Fund would feel even better, approaching sensational. Now is the time for us to make that happen and with your help we can. Click here to donate help ensure the future we need. Thank you on behalf of the Atlanta Contemporary where art remains free, safe, and open to all.

With best regards,

Sincerely,Veronica Kessenich

Executive Director

Our Studio Artist Program supports local working artists by providing subsidized studio space and by fostering a collaborative environment supportive of the creative process.

Learn more about the program.


Veronica Kessenich

Executive Director

[email protected]


Waduda Muhammad

Development Manager

[email protected]


Emma Blessing

Visitor Services Coordinator

[email protected]


Ethan Cantrell

Events Manager

[email protected]


Makiko Maekawa

Contemporary Kids Instructor


Nyssa Goodroe

Welcome Desk Associate

[email protected]


Kori Thompson

Welcome Desk Associate

[email protected]


Anna Carnes

Program Coordinator

[email protected]



Katina Asbell

Board Chair

Associate Broker, The Asbell Golde Team | Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby's International Realty

Mace Aluia

Vice President, Corporate Partnership Sales at AMB Sports & Entertainment, Atlanta Falcons / Atlanta United

Odessa M. Archibald

Area Manager, Georgia Power

Stephen Boyd

Managing Director – Accenture Interactive | Products

Natalie Figuero

Business Planning & Operations Lead, Commerce at Facebook

Emily de Golian, MD

Board Certified Dermatologist and Fellowship Trained Mohs Surgeon at Dermatology Consultants, P.C.

Charles "Chip" Mann

Retired Partner - Deloitte Tax LLP

Andrew Rodbell

Co-founder Post Meridiem Spirit Company

Barbara Russell

Senior Director, Institutional Giving at Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta

Meghan Shakar

Leadership Coach & Startup Advisor Founder, Verandi LLC

Danielle Henry

Global Director, Integrated Marketing Instagram

Our Values

Our Core Values guide us in our work. Along with our Strategic Plan, our staff and board are committed to using our Core Values in the creation, presentation, and advancement of contemporary art.


We present experiences that are relevant to contemporary culture. We do this by inviting artists to create, introduce, and present artistic ideas.


We provide a community-focused environment that fosters inclusivity and respect.


We uphold the highest standards of artistic, programmatic, and organizational excellence in every interaction that we have.


We lead our field and receive peer recognition through flawless program execution and effective implementation of our plans. We are responsive to our audience and those who aspire to work in the field of contemporary art.


We embrace and work with a wide variety of organizations, neighbors, partners, and communities to reach common goals and provide access to contemporary art in a variety of forms.

Nexus Fund


Founded by artists for artists, Atlanta Contemporary was built upon the principles of engaging in experimentation and risk-taking through exhibitions, programming, and support of working artists. The Nexus Fund expands upon the ethos of these early days. By establishing the Nexus Fund, Atlanta Contemporary gives direct and necessary support to visual arts projects being done by Metro Atlanta’s ever-growing community of contemporary arts practitioners. By supporting new work or through the expansion of an existing project, the Nexus Fund sponsors dynamic and innovative individual artists or partnerships. The Nexus Fund: Emergency Relief in first year gave $1,000 to support 60 self-identifying visual artists.

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