Arts Society & Culture

Georgia Writers Hall of Fame to celebrate new home with exhibit, public event

Sept. 27 event will include author salon and tours

Athens, Ga. – Georgia’s storied and deep literary history will be on display at the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame’s first exhibit in its new home at the University of Georgia Richard B. Russell Building Special Collections Libraries. To commemorate the opening, a public event will be held Sept. 27.

The Thursday morning program marks a new era for the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame as it continues to add to its historical collection of authors’ papers, rare editions of their work and memorabilia.

Attendees are invited to a light breakfast, a short video presentation about the Hall of Fame, librarian-led tours of the new exhibit, and the company of current members Coleman Barks, David Bottoms, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Terry Kay and Philip Lee Williams. The authors also will participate in a writer’s literary “salon,” discussing Georgia’s literary scene and legendary authors, what it means to be part of the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame and other related topics.

The salon will begin at 10 a.m. in room 285, followed by the exhibit opening and tour at 11:15 a.m. in the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library Gallery. The informal breakfast will be served prior to the salon.

William Potter, university librarian and associate provost, said the event marks a milestone for the organization as it moves into a new facility. “Our location in the university’s new Richard B. Russell Building Special Collections Libraries raises our profile on campus and gives us more opportunities to showcase our state’s exceptional literary heritage,” he said.

Established in 2000 as part of the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame honors Georgia’s most influential writers. The most recent inductees into the Hall of Fame are U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey of Decatur, Atlanta author Melissa Fay Greene, James Kilgo (1941-2002) and Johnny Mercer (1909-1976).

In conjunction and celebration of the Hall of Fame’s new home, The Georgia Review-a highly regarded journal of arts and letters founded at UGA in 1947 and published at the university ever since-recently announced that its fall 2012 edition will focus exclusively on the Hall of Fame, featuring work and commentary on the 33 members.

Stephen Corey, editor of The Georgia Review, said that the fall issue is “…quite unlike . . . anything I’ve been involved in during my 29-plus years with the journal, and I dare say during the whole run of the Review since 1947. Never before has The Georgia Review offered a single issue with such a diverse array of talents and perspectives and such a wealth of historical treasures.”

The mission of the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame is “…to recognize Georgia writers, past and present, whose work reflects the character of the state-its land and its people. Although there are award programs in the state that recognize specific books, the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame is the first to honor Georgia writers for their overall contribution to our culture.” For more information on the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, see http://www.georgiawritershalloffame.org/.