Nashville Art Teachers: Beyond the Classroom
March 4–August 28, 2022

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 1, 2022)—The Frist Art Museum presents Nashville Art Teachers: Beyond the Classroom, a group exhibition that salutes art teachers working in Davidson County and their extraordinary efforts during the challenging circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic. Featuring the artwork of elementary, middle, and high school art teachers, the exhibition will be on view in the always-free Conte Community Arts Gallery from March 4 through August 28, 2022.

The juried exhibition features works by 33 artists that were selected from more than 300 submissions from 85 teachers. “Beyond the Classroom showcases a remarkable selection of works from artists who are skilled in diverse media and emphasize a variety of themes,” says exhibition curator and Frist Art Museum community engagement director Shaun Giles. “These artists share their observations, perceptions of the world around them, and personal stories through their art.”  

Beyond the Classroom will be shown as a companion to the major retrospective Alma W. Thomas: Everything Is Beautiful. Artist Alma W. Thomas (1891–1978) worked as a schoolteacher for thirty-five years at Shaw Junior High School in Washington, DC, and she considered teaching art to be her greatest legacy. Thomas was the first Black American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1972, as well as the first to have a painting enter the collection of the White House.

Many of the works on view in Beyond the Classroom demonstrate technical skill and experimentation with alternative processes, as seen in prints by Trent Boysen of the University School of Nashville and Shayna Snider of Hume-Fogg Academic High School. Other works directly address the challenges and silver linings of the pandemic years. Anxiety looms in the landscape Thunderhead by Crieve Hall Elementary School teacher Sara Eberhart, while a mother’s reassuring embrace comforts her child in Unconditional Love by Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary School teacher Jacolyn Wingo.

Artists featured in the exhibition

Trent Boysen (University School of Nashville)

Jeff Clark (Goodlettsville Middle School)

Sara Eberhart (Crieve Hall Elementary School)

Ted Edinger (Tulip Grove Elementary School)

Susie Elder (Harpeth Hall School)

Sydney Ellison (Two Rivers Middle School)

Diana Garigliano (Julia Green Elementary School)

Leigh Hardcastle (Croft Middle Design Center)

Briena Harmening (Hillwood High School)

Jan Hatleberg (Meigs Academic Magnet Middle School)

Catharine Hollifield (Montgomery Bell Academy)

Emily Holt (University School of Nashville)

Fan Jiang (Gateway Academy Learning Lab Nashville)

JC Johnson (Ensworth School)

Lisa Jones (Wright Middle School)

Brenna Lloyd (Explore! Community School)

Janet Malone (Norman Binkley Elementary School)

Scott Mast (Hunters Lane High School)

Colleen McCormick Metzger (Overbrook School)

Marti Profitt-Streuli (Nashville School of the Arts)

Troy Rexilius (Valor College Prep)

Erin Rickelton (Lipscomb Academy)

Stacie Robelia (Tennessee Connections Academy)

Erin Scobey (DuPont Elementary School)

Beth Seawell (May Werthan Shayne Elementary School)

Jianna Shafer (Inglewood Elementary School)

Shayna Snider (Hume-Fogg Academic High School)

Laura Sturgill (Oak Hill School)

Kati Swieca-Brockman (Montgomery Bell Academy)

John Toomey (Abintra Montessori School)

Anna Torrence (Isaac Litton Middle School)

Marty Welsh (St. Edward School)

Jacolyn Wingo (Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary School)


Katie Delmez, senior curator, Frist Art Museum

Kim Dummons, associate professor, Middle Tennessee State University

Samuel Dunson, associate professor, Tennessee State University

Brian Jobe, executive director and cofounder, TriStar Arts

Alma W. Thomas: Everything Is Beautiful

Featuring more than 150 works, Alma W. Thomas: Everything Is Beautiful demonstrates how the artist’s practice extended to every aspect of her life—from community service and teaching to gardening and dress. Co-organized by the Chrysler Museum of Art and The Columbus Museum, Georgia, Everything Is Beautiful will be on view in the Frist’s Upper-Level Galleries from February 25 through June 5, 2022.

Exhibition Credit

Organized by the Frist Art Museum

Supporter Acknowledgment

Supported in part by the O’Keeffe Circle  

The Frist Art Museum is supported in part by The Frist Foundation, the Metro Nashville Arts Commission, the Tennessee Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Read about the Frist’s Health and Safety Procedures.

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Ellen Jones Pryor: 615.243.1311,

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