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Best Art Hype 

Sure, HOPE HILTON's work has been praised to the rooftops by local critics and curators and featured in the Canadian art and culture magazine Mix. But Hilton, who has mastered the aesthetics of the low-key and diminutive in an age of big-bigger-biggest, is one artist whose work lives up to all the advance press. Two of Hilton's most provocative bodies of work were featured in exhibitions this year. At the Atlanta College of Art's Gallery 100, Hilton debuted an emotionally charged series of photographs that mixed childhood and present-day snapshots of her 20-year-old brother, a soldier about to embark for war in Iraq. She then embraced dark humor in a series of black-and-white photographs called "Isolated Rap Lyrics" chosen for the 2003 Atlanta Biennial at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center. Alternately funny and disturbing, the work featured young women wearing T-shirts emblazoned with anti-woman rap lyrics. Hilton combines a twentysomething sense of ambivalence about how pop culture has invaded every nook and cranny of our consciousness while also acknowledging its pleasurable elements. Her work can currently be seen in When I Was a Child... at Youth Art Connection (63 Auburn Ave., 404-614-6233).

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