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ExHibitions - Current

William Edmondson and Friends: Breaking the Mold

September 27 2014 - January 4 2015

This fall, Cheekwood is honored to present William Edmondson and Friends: Breaking the Mold, an exhibition of works by renowned Nashville sculptor William Edmondson and the many sculptors and painters his life and art have inspired.

William Edmondson was a self-taught sculptor who made a lasting impression in the history of American art. The first African American artist to have a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1937, Edmondson pushed the idea of self-taught to another level with a bold and sophisticated approach to making art from base material.

William Edmondson and Friends creates a dialogue between Edmondson and a range of artists, many of them from Tennessee, who have also broken the mold of their medium. Edmondson’s “friends” include Lonnie Holley, Thornton Dial, Red Grooms, Olen Bryant, Puryear Mims, Alan LeQuire, Tom Rice, Meyer Wolfe and Greg Ridley.

William Edmondson and Friends invites visitors to meet the diverse community of artists who have carried forward Edmondson’s love for stone carving and interpreted it in often separate and distinct ways. More ... 

Real Gold

Eduardo Paolozzi: Portfolio Selections

July 12 - November 2

Cheekwood is hosting the work of famed sculptor and graphic artist Eduardo Paolozzi. Known widely as the “inventor of Pop Art,” the show will include several of the artist’s innovative pieces on loan from a private collection.

Eduardo Paolozzi was the son of Italian parents, born in 1924 in Edinburgh, Scotland. He began his formal training in commercial art, later discovering sculpture. He went on to shadow the great surrealists in Paris in the 1940s, drawing inspiration from the work of Jean Dubuffet and Alberto Giacometti. His work began to reflect the surrealist influence, but also to incorporate recognizable elements of popular culture and the contemporary machinery of the time. Paolozzi earned his title, “The inventor of pop art” with his 1947 collage I was a Rich Man’s Plaything, featuring clippings from magazines given to him by American Soldiers in Paris. In 1952, he founded the “Independent Group,” planting the seeds of the Pop Art movement to come.

“Paolozzi’s work is so significant, historically speaking, to global arts culture,” said Brian Downey, Assistant Curator. “Cheekwood is thrilled to host a show by the ‘inventor of pop art,’ and it’s no accident that we’re showing this rare exhibit concurrently with Andy Warhol’s Flowers. Drawing these kinds of cultural connections through our exhibits, programming, natural setting and events is at the core of our mission, and this is one of those times where everything aligns really beautifully for a great visitor experience.”

Paolozzi’s work broke new ground in the 1940s and 50s with his unique blend of surrealism, popular culture and machinery; through the 60s and 70s, he further explored machinery as art, then took on grand-scale public commissions later in his career in the 1980s and 90s. His best-known public art includes the colorful mosaic in London’s Tottenham Court Road Tube Station and a cast iron sculpture entitled “Piscator” in London’s Euston Square. Paolozzi died in London in 2005.

Cheekwood’s exhibition of Paolozzi’s work will open July 12, 2014 in the Courtyard Gallery of the Frist Learning Center and will remain on view until November 2, 2014. The previously mentioned Andy Warhol exhibition is currently open to the public and will close September 7, 2014.

Photo by Elise Inman

Patrick Dougherty: Little Bitty Pretty One

March 22 2014 - March 31 2015

Cheekwood is thrilled to welcome North Carolina native Patrick Dougherty to Nashville as our 3rd Annual Martin Shallenberger Artist-in-Residence. Dougherty is known for his giant, tangled works, described by The New York Times as “startling (and delightful) … woolly lairs and wild follies, gigantic snares, nests and cocoons.” Over the last two decades, Dougherty has installed over 200 projects in many public and private places including museums, botanic gardens, college campuses, and private residencies.  His sculpture at Cheekwood, Little Bitty Pretty One, is inspired by an English Oast house.  More ...


September 22 2012 - ongoing

Winter Train Operating Hours:
9:30 am - 3:00 pm
Train lovers, young conductors and engineers of all ages, let’s hear it for the Trains!  The exhibit features two amazing outdoor trains on three separate tracks, with so many wonderful details to explore, you’re sure to find something new every time you visit.
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