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Broderick Flanigan poses for a photo in his studio, on Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019 in Athens, Georgia. (Photo/Christina R. Matacotta, crmatacotta@gmail.com)

Tiny Ath Gallery will reopen its doors June 5 for the opening reception of artist Broderick Flanigan at 6 p.m. Owner Camille Hayes said the gallery closed its doors due to COVID-19 soon after its Females of Fabric event back in February.

On Friday, Tiny Ath Gallery will display Flanigan’s exhibition titled “Threads of Connection.”

Flanigan said his exhibition will consist of paintings and an accompanying installation. In his art, Flanigan said the “systems of oppression” black Americans face in our society is one of the main underlying themes.

Flanigan said his grandmother is the central piece or theme of the exhibition because “she was kind of like the glue that held our family together.” The exhibition pays homage to all of the grandmothers that provide balance to their families, Flanigan said.

Flanigan gives back to the Athens youth through his outreach initiative Helping Art Reach Public Spaces. HARPS intentionally caters to teenagers of color and teaches them about public art and how to make murals Flanigan said.

“It’s to inspire them not necessarily to become artists but to show them that their ideas have value, that they are important,” Flannigan said.

Hayes said Tiny Ath is encouraging visitors to wear masks while also taking precautions to make sure everyone can enjoy the gallery safely. The gallery has an entrance and an exit as well as a front and back porch that will allow people to meet and converse while maintaining a healthy distance, Hayes said. Only around five people will be allowed into the gallery at a time, Hayes said.

Since the gallery’s closing, Hayes said she has used social media to help promote other artists and keep interest in the gallery alive. While Tiny Ath was closed, Hayes said rent for the space came out of her personal income. The gallery owner said she's looking forward to being able to relieve some financial strain now that the gallery is open.

For those who don’t feel safe viewing the gallery in person, Hayes said the gallery will also have open appointments available. By setting up an appointment people can view the exhibition without the crowd, Hayes said.

Hayes said Flanigan will also host an artist talk via Facebook Live but the date has yet to be decided.

“It will be something fun for people who might not have been able to come to the opening,” Hayes said.

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