Arguing that art made in smaller cities in the American South—like Athens, Birmingham, and Rome—has little voice on the national stage despite its proximity to Atlanta’s large audience and robust media infrastructure, Cinqué Hicks reviews art made in these underserved cities with an aim toward further inserting Atlanta and the surrounding region into an ongoing national contemporary art dialogue.
Cinqué Hicks is an art critic who has been based in Atlanta since 2005. He is currently creative director of Atlanta Art Now, a biennial book publication series covering contemporary art in the region. He has also written for Art in America, Rhizome.org,Public Art Review, the International Review of African American Art, Creative Loafing, the Art Section, and Austin Downtown Arts. He served as interim editor-in-chief of Art Papers during the summer of 2012. From 2003 to 2005, he produced the resource blog Electric Skin, which covered contemporary art and techno-culture. In 2003, he also launched Bare and Bitter Sleep, one of the earliest blogs for contemporary art criticism. He received a BA in literature from Harvard University and an MS in digital media from Georgia Tech, where he wrote his thesis on digital media art in public spaces. Hicks’s recent writing includes the article “Circuit Jamming,” which surveys the Afro-futurism movement of the mid-1990s and shows how contemporary artists (Pamela X, Pamela Jennings, and DJ Spooky) who use digital technologies are going beyond the mission of that movement. He is also the coauthor of Noplaceness: Art in a Post-Urban Landscape (Possible Futures, Inc., 2011), the inaugural volume in the Atlanta Art Now series, and has written reviews of the work of Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, Dawoud Bey, and Candida Höfer.