Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 18

When you go

STEFFEN THOMAS MUSEUM OF ART

Steffen Thomas Museum of Art,
4200 Bethany Road, Buckhead. (706) 342-7557.
steffenthomas.org.
facebook.com/steffenthomasmuseumofart.

STEFFEN THOMAS MUSEUM OF ART

for the Humane Society of Morgan
County and an outdoor kinetic
sculpture made for The Caring
Place, a local food bank.
Projects such as these build the
students' self-esteem as they and
their work are shown acceptance
and appreciation by community
members.
Monetarily, Thomas was a
successful working artist. CTEG
teaches students that they can sell
their artwork-hence the "earning
green" in the program's name.
Giving the students an avenue to make money really gets
their attention, Lee says.
Students first decide what their product will be, then
incorporate marketing aspects. How will you present what you
produce? Where will you sell the product? How do you reach
buyers? Students sell their products at local festivals, the Madison Arts Guild gallery and the STMA gift shop. They also learn
how to reach buyers beyond their immediate area by utilizing
social media.
"It's a huge way artists are selling their work now,"
Collins says.
The program might just as easily have been titled "learning
green." Much of Thomas' art reflects his belief in earth stewardship. Repurposing materials-literally trash-also teaches that
costly art supplies aren't necessary. Torn T-shirts, Talia explains,
were used to create a large woven wall hanging given to the

18

Georgia Magazine

July 2019

Thomas' art in
the community
In addition to the Steffen
Thomas Museum of Art in
Buckhead, many other sites
around the Southeast display
Thomas' artwork. These
include Agnes Scott College
in Decatur, Callanwolde Fine
Arts Center in Atlanta and the
Jacqueline Casey Hudgens
Center for Art & Learning in
Duluth. A sculpture also is
installed in midtown Atlanta
at the corner of 15th and
Peachtree streets.
For an interactive map
of where you can see
Thomas' public art, visit
bit.ly/thomasartmap.

Top: A docent guides visitors through
the Steffen Thomas Museum of Art in
Buckhead. In the foreground is a model
of Thomas' "Trilon" sculpture.
Left: Vivid colors draw the eye to
"Innsbruck," one of Thomas' watercolor
paintings.

Farmview Market.
The newest element of CTEG
is the Toolkit for Living, an interpersonal curriculum designed by
Bellebuono. For many of these
students, navigating life has been challenging. Often, their
behavior reflects that.
"Yes, the world has some pretty ugly stuff in it. We don't
have to make that OK. We can choose to be different from that,"
Bellebuono says.
Her lessons are delivered interactively. For example, the
day's lesson might be about kindness and its effect on those
around them. As they create artwork, the students discuss these
concepts with one another and the CTEG instructors.
Perhaps the most important lesson of the program is the
intangible one-the one it is hoped the students retain long
after paintbrushes are put aside. That is to let them know that
regardless of current circumstances, "they are still seen, they are
still loved, they are still valued," Bellebuono says.
You can almost see Thomas' smile as his net lovingly embraces the most wonderful but unlikeliest of art students.
Sarah Russell is a freelance writer from Hot Springs, Ark.


http://www.steffenthomas.org http://facebook.com/steffenthomasmuseumofart http://www.bit.ly/thomasartmap

Georgia Magazine - July 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia Magazine - July 2019

Contents
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - Intro
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - Cover1
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - Cover2
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - Contents
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 4
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 5
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 6
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 7
Georgia Magazine - July 2019 - 8
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