Buckhead resident Laura Hathaway believes that great art enriches us beyond measure. As the owner and director of Hathaway Contemporary Gallery, she is using her extroverted sales and marketing personality to build a supportive, sustaining community for the arts and connect contemporary artists with new audiences while also exploring her more introverted love for the arts.
An exhibiting photographer and painter herself, Hathaway is inspired by the work of her late grandfather, Jim Mooney, who was a photographer in WWII and a photojournalist throughout his life, published in LIFE and National Geographic. “He inspired me to find the joy in the art of photography and in all creative pursuits,” she says.
Originally from Chattanooga, Tennessee, Hathaway has lived with her family in Atlanta for nearly 20 years. After college, she spent more than 10 years in sales and marketing in the pharmaceutical and real estate industries. “I love being around people. As my children grew to be a little more independent, I was ready to find full-time work that was inspiring and meaningful.”
In April 2016, she opened HATHAWAY after finding the perfect space on Atlanta’s Westside. “It is an edgy area of town that is easily accessed by many communities within the city. It is really becoming a fantastic artistic and culinary district in Atlanta,” she notes.
The space was an empty warehouse with no lighting, HVAC or plumbing. “We chose to highlight the industrial look of the space and also lucked out with the concrete floors, which when sealed had amazing reflective qualities. In the afternoon especially, the floors look like water and add a unique element to viewing the work.”
Hathaway and her team, which includes Gallery Manager Anne Weems, are focused on bringing a unique Southern hospitality to the gallery experience, giving space to the cutting-edge artists of today to express their creative voice and explore societal issues. Many exhibits at HATHAWAY include Artist Talks with the visiting artist, inviting collectors and novices alike to be part of the conversation. “We want everyone to feel welcome, free to ask questions and learn more about what contemporary art is all about,” Hathaway enthuses.
Exhibits to-date have included “All Tomorrow’s Parties” featuring more than 30 artists from Atlanta and Brooklyn, embracing the cities’ commonalities and creating dialogue around the differences; and solo exhibitions from Georgia native Whitney Wood Bailey and mixed media artist John Folsom. In October, HATHAWAY was the exclusive Atlanta host to live portrait sessions with the historic Large Format Polaroid, providing one-of-a-kind 20×24 inch Polaroid prints shot by the director of the 20×24 Studio before production operations end in 2017. In the first quarter of this year, the gallery has welcomed such notable artists as Arnold Mesches, Maxine Hess and Fran O’Neill.
HATHAWAY is located at 887 Howell Mill Road NW. For more information, call 470.428.2061 or visit HathawayGallery.com.