If you’re looking to pull the kids away from the television screen this weekend but can’t stand the thought of visiting the same dull museums, consider a stop into the Wren’s Nest House Museum. One of Atlanta’s oldest museums, the former home of Joel Chandler Harris educates tykes on the life of the author of the famous Brer Rabbit stories. Every Saturday afternoon, one of several local readers thrills children by re-enacting one of Harris’s popular tales. The walls of the small home are lined with mementos from the author’s life, and the rich, green brocade and period furniture give a welcoming atmosphere that your children will warm to quickly. You may find yourself enchanted by the stories as well, and you’re guaranteed to come away with a new appreciation for the classic stories of Joel Chandler Harris.
Atlanta’s Woodruff Arts Center is the city’s grandest artistic complex, containing the High Museum and the Alliance Theatre, in addition to the Atlanta Symphony. Located right in the middle of Midtown, the theater is comfortable for both dates and young families, and since the Atlanta Symphony is known for its fantastic acoustics, there are no bad seats in the house. The orchestra’s annual gala is one of the arts season highlights, featuring the talents of the orchestra in addition to celebrities like Broadway’s Audra McDonald, while even the commonplace shows tend to wow crowds, without breaking the bank. There’s nothing better at the end of a difficult work week than to sit in a plush, comfortable chair, close your eyes and allow the strains of a live orchestra to carry you away.
Visiting The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia isn't just about seeing works that have already been deemed important. It's also about discovering what the future of art may look like. That's because the museum showcases the visual works of not only established artists, but also emerging talent throughout the state. By investing so heavily in Georgia's artistic community and making the museum's collections available to the general public, MOCA GA strives to preserve these artists' legacies for the viewing pleasure of present and future generations. The permanent collection currently features over 920 works by more than 250 different artists, including paintings, sculptures, photography, prints, and digital works from the mid 1940s to the present day.
MOCA GA's staff displays many of the pieces from the permanent collection alongside works by artists from around the world, demonstrating how Georgia's artistic community fits into a larger global context. The museum hosts rotating exhibitions throughout the year, and it encourages community engagement by regularly holding artist talks and other public programs.
Conveniently located in the Selig Center, across the street from the Center for Puppetry Arts, the Breman Jewish Heritage & Holocaust Museum focuses on educating its visitors on Jewish history, and promoting universal themes like diversity and human dignity. The museum itself is tiny, but comes packed with interesting artifacts and tidbits about Jewish history in Atlanta and beyond. With such interesting pieces on display in the permanent collection, plus a continually flowing stream of exhibits, it’ll likely take several visits to really let the experience sink in. All the more reason to visit the gift shop, which stocks all manner of Jewish literature, holiday gifts and trinkets.
The art-collecting and fabulous finds events at ZuCot Gallery are like a hands-on combination of Antiques Roadshow and Night at the Museum. You'll be treated to a vast body of knowledge from a small panel of experts as they speak and answer questions on custom framing, art collecting, art theory, and art history. Bring along up to two small collectibles or heirlooms—such as jewelry, ceramics, or a small, signed first-edition lithograph of Lolcats Playing Poker—and you'll get a five-minute appraisal of each, delivered by the knowing hands, mouth, and eyeballs of an adept antiques expert (for entertainment purposes only). The event also includes a guided tour of ZuCot's in-house art collection of paintings, photography, sculpture, and more.
The Museum of Design Atlanta aims to "advance the understanding and appreciation of design", educating current and future design enthusiasts through subtle and brazen examples of design through rotating exhibits, conversational programs, events, and educational programs for kids. In the small boutique museum's airy rooms, exhibits showcase design across a wide spectrum of objects. Guest speakers regale MODA audiences once a month with discussions of their work, divulging where they get their inspiration, how they started in design, and current projects they're developing.