Perambulating the Bounds

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Nashville Visual Arts Events June 2010

Rusty Wolfe and Kim Brooks’ Finer Things Gallery is one of the great hidden spaces in Nashville—pass through the gates on Nolensville Road and down a short driveway, and you’re in a realm that seems far away from the city, surrounded by a sculpture garden and cut off from the city by trees, with maybe the biggest commerical gallery space in town. All of it perched on the edge of a creek. Bucolic. Except when it rains over a foot in a day. Then it’s a mess. Apparently they had devastating damage from the flood—10 feet of water in the building, sculptures swept away, and in addition to the gallery, the facility includes Rusty’s studio and their living space. Several Nashville galleries are helping out by donating their sales on one day to help out Rusty and Kim. This round robin fundraiser starts on June 3 during the Art After Hours when Cumberland will pitch in with 100% of their sales for the evening. The entire list of dates and galleries is as follows:

June 3 (6-9 pm) Cumberland Gallery

June 11 (5-8pm) The Arts Company

June 24 (5-8pm) Gallery One

July 1 (5-8pm) LeQuire Gallery

July 8 (5-8pm) Local Color/Midtown Gallery

July 9 (5-8pm) Zeitgeist Gallery

See Facebook for more info

A couple of shows I’m particularly looking forward to this month: Sisavanh Phouthhavong and Jarrod Houghton at Tinney and David Hellams at Downtown Presbyterian Church. And in addition to the shows opening I’m listing here, Rymer and Davis have shows continuing from May.

William Pope L. is going to be back in town June 13-19 for more shooting on the “Versioning Nashville” video project that he is doing with TSU. Contact TSU if you want to be involved:

And the Belcourt has the new Harmony Korine movie, Trash Humpers, for a few more days, then a documentary kind of about Banksy coming up (Exit Through the Gift Shop) and a big series of Kurosawa films that starts with Ran on June 11.

As always, if you have an email list of your own, feel free to forward this.

If someone wants to get added directly to my list for the email, send me an email at To get taken off the list, email to that effect at the same address.

June 3

NCAP Neuhoff Building, Kevin McGarry talk. NCAP is starting a new lecture series with a talk by New York-based critic Kevin McGarry. The event will be a conversation for RSVPs by June 1, but you might check with them and see if you can still send in an RSVP. McGarry’s in town to review Alicia Beach’s show at Seed Space on Chestnut Street. I haven’t seen anything about an opening, but it is listed at being up for all of June and July.

Cumberland, Dane Carder talk. A gallery talk by a young artist showing at Cumberland, whose paintings are drawn from old photographic images.

Zeitgeist, Nicole Baumann, Mark Bynon, Shannon Clark, Joe Saunders, and Patrick Schlafer Zeitgeist continues its tradition of summer group shows with at least longish term gallery artist (Bynon) and some newcomers (at least to me), like Baumann who has recently finished an MFA at the very highly regarded program at VCU and Schlafer who just got his bachelor’s degree from the surprising and challenging program at Lipscomb.

Vanderbilt Space 204, Jennifer Stoneking-Stewart. Exhibit by a printmaker who was teaching at Belmont but is moving to a school in South Carolina next year. Reception from 4-6. The gallery is open 10-4 on weekdays.

June 5

Tinney, Sisavanh Phouthavong and Jarrod Houghton. Independently Phouthavong and Houghton are two of Nashville’s best artists—she’s a painter and he’s a sculptor of life-like scenes. They are also married, and they’ve collaborated on the work in this show. I don’t know if I’ve seen the results of their collaborations—they had a great show together at Ruby Green, which presented separate bodies of work from them (and Erin Anfinson). Even there, some of Houghton’s work was intimately connected to their shared experience, and it is easy to imagine that the work they make together will be coherent and compelling.

Downtown Presbyterian Church, David Hellams. Hellams is known for his brilliant comic figurative drawings, executed in a meticulous hand, but he’s trying something different for the paintings in this show. He’s looking at rooms rather than people, and using very different methods that include layers of canvas. It sounds (and from one image, looks) much rougher than earlier work, but also more tactile and less tightly coded.

Estel, Anna Jaap, Steve Knudson, and Ian Kessler-Gowell. Paintings by Jaap and Knudson, glass by Kessler-Gowell. Jaap’s work has a very specific and uncommon tone, that entwines beauty, even prettiness, with wildness and darkness. It embraces decoration and familiar tropes like botanical forms, but much else lurks within it. It is romantic in the historical sense of the word, with a capital R.

Blend, Ali Bellos Ali’s project is called re:seed, and revolves around creating and disseminating seedballs around town. There are all sorts of seeds, but there’s an emphasis onphytoremediating plants that can help to repair soils contaminated with heavy metals and organic pollutants, green cover crops that will help to restore nutrients to the soil, and native plants that heal, either through medicinal properties or aesthetic beauty.” In the exhibit and a website (, participants can see where the reseeding will occur and suggest other sites. In June there will be a bike tour of the sites and at the end of the growing season the plants will be sampled to analyze them for the presence of metals and the impact of the remediation. The project probably had its origins before the floods but takes on new significance in its aftermath.

MIR, Marc Pewitt. An exhibit of photograms, images made by placing objects directly on light-sensitive paper. It’s an old experimental technique, probably most famously used by Man Ray.

Twist, Margaret Pesek. A body of work that riffs on the imagery of Catholicism, its shrines and icons. Pesek sounds like she approaches this material with a particularly intense engagement with the mystery which these images and objects hold.

The Arts Company, Brother Mel Brother Mel’s annual exhibit at the Arts Company is accompanied this year by a monograph on him written by The Arts Company’s Anne Brown. Brother Mel will be doing a book-signing for that at Davis-Kidd Friday evening. The exhibit at The Arts Company covers the many media this wildly prolific artists works in.

Rymer, Erin Anfinson, Jonathan Ferrara, Michael Brown. Closing reception.

June 8

Zeitgeist, Jonathan Neufeld. Zeitgeist launches another series of cross-disciplinary gallery talks with Neufeld, a philosopher at Vanderbilt whose interests include performance and interpretation, and the philosophies of music, aesthetics, politics, and law.

June 11

Belmont Mansion, Beth Gilmore. Part II of Beth’s senior show opens at Belmont Mansion, where she has worked for many years and which has been a huge source of images for her work. The elements shown in May at Downtown Presbyterian Church included all sorts of twisted Victoriana, like gilt frames burgeoning with computer circuit boards and constructions under bell jars. Reception from 6-8:30 on the 11th.

June 17

Tennessee State Museum, Bernard de Clavière and Romance of the Horse. Two related shows, one of which features a renowned painter of equestrian subjects who has lived in Nashville since 2002. The State Museum has assembled a selection of equestrian art and artifacts from its own and other local collections to go along with Clavière’s work.

June 18

Frist Center,The Golden Age of Couture and Tokihiro Sato. The couture show was organized by London’s Victoria and Albert Museum and looks at fashion houses in London and Paris right after World War II (1947-57). The period covered starts with the establishment of Christian Dior’s house and ends with his death. The V&A is one of the world’s leading collections of design and decorative arts, and it sounds like they’ve got examples of some of the major works by the designers active during these years. In the CAP Gallery, Sato is a photographer who started out as a sculptor and uses the photo medium as a way of capturing light and space. He uses large-format cameras and long exposures to capture light that he moves across a scene. It’s a kind of painting, and also performance.

June 26

Cheekwood, Aaron Rotham. Rothman is a photographer who has put together a site-specific exhibition for Cheekwood’s Temporary Contemporary space.


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