As I mentioned in this column a couple of weeks ago, the end of the year is typically when we see an extreme proliferation of the listicle — an article in the form of a list. And while the presence of the listicle has divided journalists and readers for eons (for some it's their bread and butter, for others it's lazy writing), the debate will have to rage on because I'm contributing another article of lists to the list of listicles.

I asked a number of members of Savannah's art community to tell me about the most notable event of 2018 they were involved in and also the most notable event they were not involved in. I got such a wide range of responses that I decided to split them into multiple installments. This, then, is the second installment of the Best of 2018 picks from the Savannah arts community. I personally found the responses far more engaging than most listicles. Hopefully you'll agree.

Susan Laney: independent curator, owner/director of Laney Contemporary Fine Art

Most notable event involved in: “It was incredible to exhibit the work of Jack Leigh here at Laney Contemporary. After running the Jack Leigh gallery and working with Jack's work for over 20 years, having a show of his work in our new gallery brought everything 'full circle' (something Jack used to say). Still in our first year, we were able to expand and add a 'works on paper' room that will remain a dedicated space to exhibit Leigh's work no matter what exhibition we currently have on view.

"We entered 2018 with a brand-new gallery creating access to our artists' work and held solo exhibitions by Eny Lee Parker, Ansley West Rivers, Todd Schroeder, Kevin Cooley, Jack Leigh, Betsy Cain, Will Penny, and currently Marcus Kenney. As we move forward with programming, we are excited about what 2019 will bring.”

Most notable event not involved in: “It is inspiring seeing the non-partisan super PAC For Freedoms, a group run by artists to encourage public explorations of freedom, because of the impact they are making on both a small and a national scale. This group of artists, including founders Hank Willis Thomas and Eric Gottesman, as well as Carrie Mae Weems, Rashid Johnson, Xaviera Simmons, Alec Soth, and many more, encourages inclusivity and inspires communities. The impact can be felt and the conversation it is bringing to small communities and larger audiences is extremely powerful.

"Events in conjunction with For Freedoms took place in our own back yard with a public sign making activation in Savannah at Telfair Museums' Owens-Thomas House and a sculptural installation in Atlanta with Flux Projects, allowing opportunities for participants to voice their commitment to personal freedoms. We also had 'Shadow Stories and Matters of Time' open at the SCAD Museum of Art as part of the fall exhibitions. The exhibition was curated by artist Hank Willis Thomas as part of For Freedoms. On a broader scale, this year For Freedoms launched the 50 State initiative, a campaign to bring 52 artist-designed billboards bearing thought-provoking messages to 50 states (plus Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico).”

Lisa D. Watson: artist and activist

Most notable event involved in: “2018 was my most prolific year to date. Even though the 12 exhibits I was involved in this year locally and nationally are all worth mentioning, my most notable was my 'Avanguardia' exhibit at the Jepson Center for the Arts that closed March 11. I spent one year working on this collection that entwined my admiration for human infrastructure and my love for the surrounding environment. Working with Erin Dunn, Rachel Reese, Heath Ritch, Milutin Pavlovic and Jessica M. Estes was a dream (that I dreamt about for 43 years) come true. To put the cherry on the top of the already most delicious sundae in the world, my piece, 'Convergence' is now in their permanent collection. I'm still pinching myself.”

Most notable event not involved in: “I was really fond of alderman and professional photographer Bill Durrence's lecture 'Savannah: An Ever Changing City,' which was part of the Hungry for History Lecture Series at City Hall. I still think about it months later. As a native Savannahian, he has documented the city from its dilapidated years to the present.

"He admits to not always being on board with architectural transformation, but his newly optimistic views on change, along with his photography, was something I needed to hear and see. The Hungry for History Lecture Series, organized by Luciana Spracher, might just be the most under-appreciated monthly event. I always try to go when I can get off work!”

Jennifer Moss: artist and co-founder of Sulfur Studios

Most notable event involved in: “‘Function Exhibition,’ featuring work from craft artists all over the country. I was very proud of the final installation and the blend of beautifully crafted functional work, and work that was more conceptual and tongue-in-cheek. Also, not a single event but our ongoing ON::View residency program is probably what I'm most proud of at Sulfur this year. It's been great to see how different artists transform the space and engage with community, giving a wider understanding of what art is and what an artist does.”

Most notable event not involved in: “I really enjoyed Betsy Cain's exhibition and her artist talk at Laney Contemporary. One of my favorite artists currently working in Savannah, and I loved the creative way she used the mirror room.”

Brea Cali: cultural consultant and outgoing Cultural Affairs Commission chair

Most notable event involved in: “I had the pleasure of choreographing the dance sections in Jerome Meadow's recent production of ‘Blank Page Poetry — Waters Avenue: Voices Along the Corridor.’ The performance featured honest, straightforward dialogue through poetry, movement, and imagery, regarding the past, present, and future of Waters Avenue. It's imperative artists are provided safe spaces to express their full realities and for the community to openly engage within them.”

Most notable event not involved in: “I look forward to Telfair Museums' PULSE Art + Technology Festival every year. As we navigate our complex world, PULSE's interactive art and tech programming reminds us of the enormous role creativity plays to be braver in how we live, think, and build our future.”

More best picks

The final installment of this series will appear next week. The first installment was published Dec. 9.

Kristopher Monroe is a writer documenting the intersection of art and community. Contact him at and follow on Twitter @savartscene.