This work serves as Camisha Butler’s heartfelt tribute to the unique Atlanta hip-hop experience.
While the standard iconography of ghetto blasters, breakdancers, and freestyling cyphers is universally understood, it does not resonate or reflect what hip-hop means to Atlanta.
Southern regional rap is rooted in an enduring culture of partying, acquiring success, and looking good. Its rap is born from the energy of the juke joints of the past. No matter the conditions Atlantans have had to exist within, they’ve always celebrated a good time.
With Forever I Love Atlanta, Butler hopes to erect a noble monument that honors those values.
The location of the monument is at a nexus of all the facets of Atlanta hip-hop. It’s near Pittsburgh, Oakland City, and Sylvan Hills, the home of trap artists such as Young Thug and Lil Baby. In Yung LA’s song “Ain’t I” he rapped about riding down Dill. It’s also near the Afrocentric, artsy, feel-good energy of the West End, which is the origin of Arrested Development and countless conscious underground hip-hop artists.
Embracing a Southern Folk Assemblage style, the statue will be made of found objects, painted wood, wood wrapped in rope, and ceramic tiling, with electrical elements including the FILA sign and actual speakers to bring the BOOM!
Camisha Butler is a native Atlanta-based multidisciplinary artist and educator.
A lifelong storyteller and creator, she earned her BA in Film at Georgia State University and an MS in Fashion Design from Drexel University. Her work takes a Neo-Luddite approach to preserving and promoting ancestral craft practices through colorful aesthetics, weaving, garment construction, embroidery, and hand-built pottery.