About F.A.C.E

with David Manuel

Article by Stevie Peterson

Photography by Aric Thompson

Originally published in SOFU Lifestyle

Fulton County continues to be THE place the world looks to for fashion. David Manuel, director of Arts and Culture, proudly commands the world stage and is a connoisseur of fashion and art. Manuel’s style is more than attire—he is just as comfortable in a Miguel Wilson suit as he is in a comfortable crew neck. His style motto is “As long as you have a neat haircut and nice shoes, everything in between is all good.” It is his presence and his desire to see others succeed and the manner in which he executes programs with integrity and admiration from those around him that truly makes him stand out from the crowd.

If you had the honor of being amongst the people who attended the events last year, then you know any event signed off by Manuel is one not to be missed. Last year’s events included “Teen Talks” which featured a Q&A session with hip hop artist T.I. and media personality Kenny Burns. This year will be even bigger! Mark your calendars for F.A.C.E. 2.0: Forty Days of Fashion, September 14 through October 24.

Dine and Fash. Diners at a local restaurant will be among the very first to witness the creativity of Atlanta’s newest designers. They will be front and center for a fashion showcase at a “Brunch and Beat,” with the aisle serving as a runway for models wearing designs fresh off the press. The event is an absolutely perfect way to introduce a local restaurant and up and coming talent to the community. Last year, the fortunate venue was Highland Bistro.    

Met Gala Met Atlanta. Creators of the Met Gala should prepare to take notes at Faces of Fashion at the High Museum. The city of Atlanta will serve as the backdrop to this not-to-miss event for beauty and style. Expect to see a stunning mix of couture, avant-garde, and sustainable fashions. Rub shoulders with well-known personality Lisa Nicole, of “Married to Medicine,” and Q from the R and B group 112, both of whom will host this high-profile affair.

In addition to physical creations, F.A.C.E. 2.0 will continue to merge very different thoughts.

Collaboration Over Competition. Manuel believes in bringing groups together, thus accomplishing more than could be possible if going it alone. This year, two fashion students from Clark University will earn an opportunity to attend Paris Fashion Week and a workshop in the beautiful city of Paris, France. This will provide students an opportunity to share Atlanta style abroad in a city that launches brands globally.

The goal is for more students to collaborate with the organization. Both high school and collegiate future fashion creators, artists, and other creatives (authors, sculptors) will begin to see their dreams realized with the assistance F.A.C.E. offers. Among the students extended this invitation are enrollees in SCAD, Spelman College and Atlanta Public and Fulton County high school students.

Public Art and Innovation. Manuel sees opportunity in everything, even when the focus should be on him. During a trip to Texas to claim the NACO (National Association of County Officials; naco.org) award for Arts, Culture, and Historic preservation, he experienced innovations like self-driving cars, holograms, and creating avatars that he envisioned increasing the impact F.A.C.E. would have in the Fulton County community. One such innovation is Future Labs.

Future Labs, located in the Underground, is the only government-run program where citizens can produce digital arts. Manuel states Future Labs is a safe haven for the community, offering opportunities to experience video mapping, animation, and the latest trends in technology.

F.A.C.E. (Fashion, Art, Culture, Education) is the brainchild of David Manuel, who created the initiative after a conversation with County Commissioner Natalie Hall.

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