Art Collecting

Art House members had the distinct pleasure of touring the Knoxville home of Cindy and John Compton in April.  We learned about their curated collection from their art dealer, Bill Lowe of Atlanta, Georgia.

Bill is as passionate as they come, and explained his process of matching homeowners to their art.  He compared buying art to marriage and warned never to buy art purely based on its monetary value. “You shouldn’t marry for money and the same is true for art. It has to be something that you love,” explained Lowe.

Peter Glander of Knox Provisions catered the event. And thanks to our gracious hosts, Art House members sipped some lovely wines too.

Guests lingered to talk one-on-one with Bill and learn about some of the works adorning the walls of the Compton’s home.  He spoke of Southern artists, like Thornton Dial, whose work will be apart of a new exhibit this summer at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Arguably the most recognized  self-taught African American artist from the South, Thornton Dial was born to sharecroppers in rural Alabama. He worked for three decades as a metalworker for the Pullman Standard Company, the railroad manufacturer, and then took up various skilled trades—house painting, highway construction, commercial fishing, and pipe fitting—before devoting himself to art full time in 1987.   – Victoria L. Valentine for Culture Type

The exhibit featuring Dial, “History Refused to Die: Highlights from The Souls Grown Deep Foundation Gift” opens on May 22nd and runs through September 23rd. If your summer travels include New York, please be sure to go!  What a treat for Art House members.

Upcoming Events

  • Artists on Location
    Saturday, April 28th at 5pm
    Knoxville Museum of Art

What do Monet, Pissarro and Renoir all have in common?  Mais oui, en plein air!  This French expression translates to “in open air,” the setting these artists explored in their paintings.

Modern day painters still use the temporal effects of natural light on their subjects – in fact, more than thirty local and regional artists will be painting in and around Knoxville as part of the Guild of the KMA’s event Artists on Location.

You are invited to meet the artists and see their works of art at the Artists on Location Preview Event.  As an Art House member, you will have early access to purchase these locally produced works.  Light refreshments will be served and each Art House guest will receive a complimentary drink ticket.

See image for further details – reply to by April 26.

Artists on Location



  • Kick-off to Summer
    Friday, May 11 at 7pm 
    Knoxville Museum of Art
    *Dressy casual

Dance to the music of party band The Atlanta Showstoppers; enjoy drinks and a cocktail buffet.  Tickets are $125 per person, however, Art House members receive a special $25 discount and access to the private Art House lounge, where we can gather during the lively event! Click here to receive the exclusive Art House discount.


  • Letterpress & Printmaking with Bryan Baker
    Wednesday, May 30 at 6pm

    Striped Light Letterpress Studio

Exclusive to Art House members – owner Bryan Baker will give a tour of the Striped Light Letterpress Studio and give a printmaking demonstration. And, you may leave with your own print too!


  • Painting with a Purpose 
    Saturday, June 23 at 6pm
    Knoxville Museum of Art

Art House is bringing animal and wildlife painter Freddy Paske from the UK to Knoxville for this incredible event. Paske’s work brings attention to the difficulties facing what remains of the world’s wildlife population. He was embedded with wildlife rangers in Africa where he was inspired to create works of art. The night will be one you don’t want to miss, as the gregarious Paske shares his work with us, and the powerful meaning behind it.  More details to come!

Sponsorship opportunities available; email for more information.


Art Collecting: April 19th

Art House is thrilled to continue our Art Collecting series.  In the past, we’ve visited the homes of the KMA’s executive director, back in July of 2016, and last spring we went inside the home of a top interior designer.  These events are intimate and inspiring.


This photo was taken during last year’s event at the home of Bobby Brown and Todd Richesin.

And this April, we will go beyond the walls of the museum to the West Knoxville home of Cindy and John Compton.  We will hear the stories behind the works in their private collection, and learn about the world of galleries and art dealers.

The event is scheduled for Thursday, April 19 at 6:30pm.

It is our hope that you will leave inspired to continue (or begin) your own art collection. Space is limited, and exclusive for Art House members only.  Please send your RSVP to by April 14.  (Only those who have RSVPed will receive the address for the party.)

Recap: Whiskey & Welding

Take a fine selection of aged whiskey, including the highly sought after Pappy Van Winkle, and combine it with a live art demonstration by master welder, Preston Farabow, and you have Art House’s latest event: Whiskey & Welding. 

More than 50 Art House members gathered at Ironwood Studios to sip some of Sazarac’s finest whiskeys and see art in action.  The unseasonably warm February night allowed for the doors to be open, with the warm breezes traveling from one end of the eclectic studio to the other.  Preston bends metal for a living, so things can get hot in the studio pretty easily; the professional artist owns and operates Aespyre Metal Design. 

During a chat with Art House member, Chad Youngblood, Farabow talked about making art that can be appreciated by people from all walks of life. He talked about the forgiveness of metal, saying “If you make a mistake, who cares? You just heat it up, and the mistake melts away. That’s why I love working with metal.” He has produced commissioned works for a diverse range of clients, both corporate and private, from the State of Tennessee to RedBull.  The work of which he is most proud, however?  Farabow said his two children.

Here is a look at what he created right before our eyes:

We also learned more about the whiskey industry and sipped whiskey from one of only 21,000 bottles of Pappy Van Winkle created each year. Patrick Campbell of Sazarac traveled from Frankfort, KY where the Buffalo Trace Distillery is located. He brought with him a variety of their whiskeys to taste. And to be technical, Campbell clarified that “all whiskey is bourbon, but not all bourbon is whiskey.” Whether it was bourbon in the glasses or whiskey, Art House members enjoyed every drop.

By night’s end, Art House members left with a greater appreciation for the taste of whiskey and the unique art of welding in equal measure. The juxtaposition of the two was obvious – one aged for years in a slow wooden barrel and the other a fast, hot metal, bending before our eyes.

Donuts & Dine: Feb 10th

A kid-friendly event is coming up for Art House members!  Join us at 9:30am on Saturday, February 10th, for a Valentines-making party, complete with donuts from Maker’s and a hot chocolate bar.  {And don’t worry, there will plenty of coffee for the adults too!}

We will get inspired by the artwork of Jim Dine.  Dine often uses the heart shape in his works, making him an ideal artist to study in the days leading up to Valentine’s Day!  Two new Dine pieces have been added to the KMA’s permanent collection since last year.

Participants will get the chance to make their own works of art back in the great hall.  We will use a stippling technique with acrylic paint to create beautiful valentines for you and your little one(s) to take home!

The price for Donuts & Dine is $5/person.  Please RSVP to Maggie Meyers at  We hope to see you on Saturday!



Recap: 2018 Kick-Off Party

What a fun night at the KMA on Thursday!  More than 80 people gathered to drink, eat, and enjoy the inspiring work of artist Denise Stewart-Sanabria. What a fabulous way to start off 2018.


Art House is about learning and growing through art, and Thursday was a perfect example of that.  Most Art House events include great drinks and food as well!

DeniseStewartSanabria_Bauhaus DaliDoesDecor

Melissa and Randy Burleson of Aubrey’s Restaurant provided a beautiful display of food inspired by Denise’s paintings of modern food items.


As Art House begins its third year we are so grateful to returning members and equally excited about the new faces in the crowd.  We have a thrilling line-up of events for the year and Art House Committee Chair Courtney Lee touched on a few of them just a couple of weeks away.


In order to attend future Art House events, members need to pay their 2018 dues by February 1st.  Here is a link to make that process as simple as possible!  Any questions, can be directed to Maggie Meyers at


2018 Kick-off

Art House is thrilled to kick-off 2018 with an event that will be sure to entice the mind and tastebuds of all who attend!  Artist, Denise Stewart-Sanabria will join Art House members and prospective members-alike for an art demonstration that involves the artist’s primary subject: food!

Art of Food_Invite-01

Her paintings awe art lovers as she creates a world that is oftentimes even better than the reality!  Just look how scrumptious!  (Knoxville is lucky enough to claim Stewart-Sanabria as a resident since the 1980’s!)


The time and place:  7pm on January 25th at the Knoxville Museum of Art!  Art House members are invited to renew their membership for the year, and we will be accepting new memberships too.  For more information and to RSVP, email Maggie Meyers at

We look forward to seeing you on Thursday and sharing this incredible experience!


A Party in a Jewel Box

Luminaries lined the sidewalk, leading to the secret location of the second annual Art House Holiday Party.  The air was cold, and the night was dark, perfect conditions for taking in the beauty of the Shell House, recently bequeathed to the museum by the late architect and professor, William Shell.  The residence is perched on a bluff in South Knoxville – the structure completely finished with glass walls.


Shell described the residence and its architecture as visual art. With all of its structural members exposed – steel beams and bar joists supported by eight columns – the structure is the central expressive element of the design.

The Art House committee knew this would be the perfect spot for the Christmas party!

Add a bountiful display of hor d’oeurves and a fully stocked bar, plus some festive music, and you have one entertaining party.

Guests reveled in the breathtaking views of the Tennessee River down below.  A fabulous time was had by all!

Under the Art

It was a double delight on Thursday evening, when Art House members were treated to a second trip to the archives in the basement of the Knoxville Museum of Art, as well as a guided tour through the Gathering Light exhibit – a collection of Beauford Delaney’s work.

Members nibbled on some delicious eats from Sunspot, and sipped a bright collection of summer wines and beer.

The KMA’s Assistant Curator, Clark Gillespie, led “group A” to the basement first.  Equipped with gloves to use when handling the most precious of works, Gillespie shared some insight into how the museum stores pieces of its permanent collection, as well as the process of deaccession, which can be a dirty word in art circles, as this refers to the removal of art from a museum’s collection.  (Rest assured, Gillespie said the KMA is committed to keeping works of art in the public space, so any work that leaves the museum’s permanent collection heads to an auction exclusive to other public institutions.)

In addition to the pieces that have been in the KMA’s possession for many, many years, Gillespie called our group’s attention to some pieces laying on a storage table.  The works are apart of the edgy, Novak Collection and include originals by printmakers Red Grooms and Sol LeWhitt.  This is a unique time for these pieces, which were gifted to the KMA by Chicago-based collectors, Helen and Russell Novak in 2015.  The pieces will be apart of the upcoming exhibit, Press Ahead, in 2018.  The selection emphasizes a broad range of printmaking techniques and formats.

What’s also fascinating is that during the group’s first tour of the archive room at the KMA, the works of Knoxville-born artist, Beauford Delaney were on that very same table…more than a year away from being on display for the public.


In February 2016, Gillespie, showed Art House members the works of Beauford Delaney, a year and a half before they were apart of the Gathering Light exhibit at the KMA. 

And now that the show, Gathering Light, is open, the KMA’s Executive Director, David Butler, led Art House on a guided tour of those same works by Delaney.

Butler shared the history of the artist’s life that includes a beginning in Knoxville and an ending in Paris with stops in Boston, then New York where the artist was a beloved member of the Harlem Renaissance.  Despite battling poverty, prejudice, and mental illness, Delaney achieved an international reputation for his portraits, scenes of city life, and free-form abstractions marked by intense colors, bold contours, and expressive surfaces.  The artist was born in 1901 and died in 1979.

What a rich night of art and conversation!

Archive Tour 2.0 – FULL

We are just a few days away from our second trip down to the archives at the KMA, and we are happy to report the evening has booked up!  But this is one of those events that’s so popular that we will have it again, especially when you consider that the art in the archives in constantly changing…


Art House members will be treated to the works from the Novak Collection – this edgy work will be on display in 2018 at the Knoxville Museum of Art.  Quite the sneak peek!

We will enjoy food from Sunspot’s new menu.  Beer and wine are on the house too!  See you Thursday evening!  (For more information or to get on the waitlist, email Carla at