Knoxville First Friday Guide: June 2017

In Visual Arts by Matthew Everettleave a COMMENT

Here’s a guide to this month’s First Friday art events, which will take place all around downtown on June 2. For a complete list of local art events and exhibitions, visit the Knoxville Mercury online calendar or pick up the latest issue.

17th Street Studios: Amalgam Volume 4
The Emporium Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free

“The artists who make up 17th Street Studios each have a unique background and specific creative inclination. Their differing goals result in bodies of work that notably contrast from one other. Yet, as these artists inhabit the same space, conversations are sparked, similarities are discovered, and a fusion of ideas take shape. As a result, the word amalgam, meaning a mixture or blend, identifies the work produced by the residents of this studio. The artists of 17th Street Studios are Eric Brittain, Lesley Eaton, Jon Hendricks, Renee Holiday, Beth Meadows, Janet McMullen, Natalie Petrosky, Britton Sharp, and alumni Gwyn Pevonka. 17th Street Studios is a private work space for artists located in Redeemer Church in the Fort Sanders neighborhood near downtown Knoxville. Its primary mission is to promote the success of fine artists through affordable physical space that fosters community and support.”

Ashley Addair: A Howling Respect
The Central Collective • 7-10 p.m.

“This body of work explores interconnectedness as a rumination on memory, legacy, and cultural ties. Both the materials and process serve as a metaphor for the human experience. As the paintings evolve, first from a memory or from an oral history, they contend with the mysteries and paradox of the creative process and our primal urge toward making meaning. Addair uses pattern, color and imagery to create both dissonance and harmony in exploring her Appalachian background and the complexities of shifting identity.”

Art Market Gallery Featured Artists: Amber Anne Palo and Victoria Simmons 
Art Market Gallery • 5:30-8:30 p.m. • Free
“June’s AMG First Friday Reception features artists Amber Anne Palo and Victoria Simmons.”

Christian Branson: A Beginner’s Evolution
The Emporium Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free

“Christian Branson is a new up and coming artist who lives and works in the Knoxville, TN area. A native of Panama City, FL, his colorful paintings derive from his desire for exploration into the areas of form and color cohesion, as well as contrasts between them. His art emanates a wide range of emotions and expresses the vibrant spirit and atmosphere of the human mind, individual condition and perception of the world around him.”

Dogwood Arts Regional Art Exhibition
Dogwood Arts • 5:30-8:30 p.m. • Free

Courtesy of Dogwood Arts

“Jarrell Cemetery Landlocked by Strip Job, West Virginia” by Shawn Poynter


Courtesy of Dogwood Arts

“Kathy Valentine” by Eric Buechel at the Dogwood Arts Regional Art Exhibition

“The Dogwood Arts Regional Art Exhibition returns to showcase work from leading progressive and emerging artists from a seven state region. The exhibition will encompass fine art of all styles and genres from artists, with selections made by renowned juror, Leslie Noell, who currently works at Penland School of Crafts as director of programs in Bakersville, NC.”

Anne Freels: The Maize Abides
The Emporium Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free

“Anne Freels is a full-time craft artist who has been making corn shuck dolls since 1975. She is devoted to the creative process of craft and especially the alchemy of transforming raw, natural materials into new forms. First, she dyes the natural dried corn shucks by hand; she then rolls and ties them into the doll figures; and finally, she embellishes them with a variety of natural materials and repurposed objects. Freels’ dolls represent her imaginative notions of folklore, legend, myth, and earthly and celestial entities as well as traditional Appalachian themes. Because of her interest in keeping corn shuck doll craft alive, she teaches workshops and classes and has authored an instructional book on the craft entitled “Making Colorful Corn Shuck Dolls”. Her work is available at various craft galleries and shops in the southern Appalachian region.”

Curtis Glover
Pretentious Beer Company • 4-11 p.m. • Free

“Local mural artist Curtis Glover will be our featured artist of the month. In conjunction with hanging his work, Curtis will be doing a live painting alongside local DJ Chance Losher. Chance will be playing some down tempo, chill music to enhance the already cool vibe of our patio.”

Knoxville Modern Quilt Guild Quilt Show 2017
The Emporium Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free

“The Knoxville Modern Quilt Guild exists for residents in and around Knoxville who have an interest in modern design and quilting. KMQG hopes to provide members with a community where modern quilters can meet, share ideas, and create in an environment that encourages creativity and acceptance. The Guild is a member of the international Modern Quilt Guild, whose first meeting took place in January 2010 and was organized by Alissa Haight-Carlton. Mary Beth Meadows of the Knoxville Modern Quilt Guild took subsequent steps to establish KMQG in February of that same year. The Guild will exhibit quilts made using traditional means and featuring a modern aesthetic. The collection will consist of works from KMQG members.”

The Knoxville Photography Project
Knoxville Visitors Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free
“The Knoxville Photography Project was organized by local photographer Bruce McCamish. On the weekend of May 5, 50 photographers—25 professionals and 25 amateurs—canvased Knoxville and Knox County to capture their interpretations of what defines Knoxville: the places, the people, the music, the food.”

Robert Heller: Living On: Tennesseans Remembering the Holocaust
Downtown Gallery • 5-9 p.m. • Free
“The UT Downtown Gallery presents an exhibition of 24 portraits of holocaust survivors and liberators living in Tennessee by Robert Heller a professor in the School of Journalism and Electronic Media at the University of Tennessee since 1986. Living On has previously been exhibited in museums around the state of Tennessee and at major cities in Poland. A book of the images and accompanying interviews was published by the University of Tennessee Press in spring, 2008. Living On is a project of the Tennessee Holocaust Commission, which is funded by an annual appropriation from the Tennessee State Legislature and by private donations.”

Asa McEwan: Art to Save a Dying Planet
The Birdhouse • 6-10 p.m. • Free
“This month’s featured artist will be the one and only Asa McEwan. Her exhibit is entitled Art to Safe a Dying Planet.”

Nasty Woman Art Exhibit
The Old City • 6-11 p.m. • Free
“Over 40 artists from the Southeastern United States will exhibit work in the Nasty Woman Art Exhibit. The opening reception will be on June 2 from 6-11pm at the Basement Community Arts Studio and Lox Salon. Work will be displayed throughout the Old City at Lox Salon, Basement Community Art Studio, Good Golly Tamale and the Gratitude Bar. 100 percent of profits from the sale of artwork and submission fees will go to the Knoxville Family Justice Center and Girls Rock Camp of Knoxville, both charities that support and empower women. The exhibit runs though June 4.”

Old City Train Mural Restoration Celebration 
Love Shack • 6-8 p.m. • Free

“Keep Knoxville Beautiful commissioned artist Walt Fieldsa to create the Knoxville Historic Train Mural in 2001, just one year after commissioning the Knoxville Music History Mural around the corner. The Train Mural was created during a time when the Old City was nearly derelict, and the site was deliberately chosen both to elevate it and to memorialize the nearby train line, which transformed Knoxville from a small river town into a major wholesale center. After 16 years, the Train Mural was cracked and faded due to wear and tear from the elements. Thanks to donations from the Central Business Improvement District (Downtown Knoxville), the Historic Southern Railway Station, Blue Slip Winery and Bistro, and numerous generous individuals, KKB was able to hire Walt to return to his mural to repair and revitalize it this spring, and work is now complete.”

Smart and Becker Creative 
Rala • 6-9 p.m. • Free
“Rala is proud to feature the handmade jewelry designs of Ryan-Ashley creator of Smart and Becker. Her work features a variety of processes, including peyote-stitch beadwork, bead-making, fiberwork jewelry.”

Susanne Tanner: Australian Walk About
The Emporium Center • 5-9 p.m. • Free

“Susanne Tanner is best known for her Australian-inspired paintings depicting the natural beauty, native cultures and modern interpretations of the Australian outback. She has exhibited her work in London, United Kingdom; Perth, Western Australia, Australia; Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia; and Taipei, Taiwan. The majority of her work is inspired and based upon her living experiences in Australia, United Kingdom and most recently America. Tanner brings a wealth of talent and knowledge from her years of solo traveling, and circumnavigating the world twice, experiencing native cultures and the remote natural beauty of this planet.”



Senior Editor Matthew Everett manages the Knoxville Mercury's arts & entertainment section, including the comprehensive calendar section—Knoxville’s go-to guide for everything worth doing in the area. You can reach Matthew at

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