But that’s not all he does. J Trav is a busy guy whose artistic, curatorial, and musical efforts throw shame on your lazy game. He plays in the local band Sealions, curated the current group art exhibition at Aurora Coffee in Little 5 Points, is in the middle of launching a new Atlanta-centric culture magazine, and pays the bills doing a range of designerly deeds. Rumor has it that he sleeps sometimes, but we’ve seen no evidence of this.
CL recently hung out with Jason Travis and talked about art, life, love and Lilburn.
CL:Where are you from, Jason?
JT:Yeah, I know.
CL:Moving on...“Rest in Space”, a show you curated, just opened at Aurora Coffee L5P - how do you feel about how it turned out?
JT:I think it’s great. I like that there are fewer pieces in this show. Last year, I curated a photography show at MINT with over 130 pieces. We spent 13 hours hanging that show. It was awful. This show [at Aurora] is more stripped down, but I’m really excited about every single piece in it.
CL:What’s up with the title?
JT:The work itself deals with the idea of inner and outer spaces, but it’s also a more overall message to the art and the artists saying, “here’s a place you can rest your artwork/thoughts/whatever.”
CL:There are local sweetheARTs (oh yeah, I said that), like Allen Taylor and Chris Chambers, in this show. But there are some new names too - like Courtney Burton and her way dope collage/lightbox things. Where did you find the new guys?
JT:Artists like Courtney Burton have been making art for a long time, and just haven’t shown it anywhere. I have a few people like that, in Atlanta, NYC, Nashville, Texas, whose work I’m in love with and am trying to get them to show here. It’s always really nice to get to show someone’s art that you love that no one has seen before.
CL:So you’ve been around - what do you think of Atlanta in general, in terms of art and music, as compared to other cities?
JT:Atlanta keeps me inspired. Never know what else might be amazing around the corner but do know that there will be people who support it, and cherish it. There’s a great sense of community here. And no one is paying attention to creative dividing lines; people are making music and also art and also writing and just doing everything, which is great. There’s no sense of restriction or limitation to what you can do if you’re a creative person in Atlanta right now. For me personally, it’s important to have both. There’s a lot of crossover.
CL:Quick - name drop time. What are some of the bands, artists and venues on your list right now?
JT:Lyonnais, Roman Photos, Living Rooms, All the Saints - bands that are really pushing the boundaries for Atlanta music. And my band, but you don’t have to say that. (but we did.) And venues like 529, Star Bar, and Highland Ballroom that give bands like these a great place to do their thing.
Rest in Space [at Aurora] is basically filled with all artists I’m into right now. That’s what’s fun about curating a show.
CL:You’re in the middle of putting together the August 1 launch party for Purge ATL. Tell us about that.
JT:Purge ATL is a new magazine that covers culture, music, food and general goings-on. The things we (the contributors) think are worthwhile. It’s not -and I don’t wanna harsh anyone or talk bad - like Metromix or Buckhead stuff or anything. Not that there’s anything wrong with what they’re doing. All these different websites and publications should write about what they like, instead of only what they think they should cover. If a bunch of different people with different tastes are writing about different events, then more ground gets covered. That’s the way it should work, I think. But we’re not gonna cover anything if we think it sucks. We also try to profile a lot of creative Atlantans. (Don’t step on my game, says CL girl.)
CL:Everyone seems to think you’re a swell dude. What’s your secret?
JT:Just be good to people, and they’ll be good to you. (And for some reason, we actually believe him.)
Purge ATL Launch Party w/ The Selmanaires, Coathangers and Sealions. Aug. 1. 7 p.m.-11 p.m. The Earl. badearl.com.EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been updated.
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