Echo Street West’s art studio and gallery space, Guardian Studios, is set to open this month. The studios, which are located in a formerly vacant brick warehouse adjacent to event space Guardian Works, will be managed by Atlanta-based, women-led arts group Black Women in Visual Art (BWVA). The arts group will also curate exhibits, foster connections, and oversee educational programming for the community.
The redevelopment project at Echo Street West is in the hands of real estate firm Lincoln Property Company, who announced plans to construct Guardian Studios last December. Guardian Studios and Guardian Works are the first projects in the Echo Street West redevelopment project to deliver.
In its first phase, Guardian Studios will feature 14 rentable studios, between 200 and 500 square feet, outdoor murals, and a 3,000-square-foot gallery space. Phase 2 will bring about 26 more art studios for rent and a ceramics studio equipped with kilns and pottery wheels. Under the leadership of BWVA, the goal at Guardian Studios is to foster a community of artists and art enthusiasts on Atlanta’s west side.
“As Atlanta’s diverse and vibrant art community is desperately in need of more resources and support to keep flourishing, and the challenges of the past year have shone a light on that need like never before, the partnership with Guardian Studios at Echo Street West is a great opportunity for the Atlanta arts ecosystem,” Lauren Jackson Harris, co-founder of BWVA, said in a press release. “Guardian Studios offers local artists not only a beautiful space at affordable rates, but also a chance to network with each other, showcase their talents and engage with the community in new ways.”
Harris and co-founder Daricia Mia DeMarr founded BWVA in 2019 as a means of creating networks, sharing resources, and developing programs for visual arts of the African Diaspora, with the goal of increasing visibility for women in the field. Their plan at Guardian Studios is to expand their mission to support artists and art enthusiasts of all backgrounds by fostering an inclusive community and hosting plenty of public experiences.
So whether you’re an artist in need of a studio space (and a little moral support) or simply a lover of freshly-painted murals, you can head to Guardian Studios this summer for a good dose of artistic inspiration.