May 1–December 31, 2020

We Count: First-Time Voters

Online exhibition

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  • Beizar Aradini, My Existence is Political, 2019. Embroidery thread on fabric, 80 1/2 x 31 1/2 in. Poem by Drenusha Kolshi. Translation by Mimoza Kolshi. Courtesy of the artist. © Beizar Aradini. Photo: John Schweikert

  • M Kelley. Vote (Peace and Participation), 2019. Relief print, thread, and fabric, 48 1/2 x 30 in. Courtesy of the artist. © M Kelley. Photo: John Schweikert

  • M Kelley. Burn (Action and Incitement), 2019. Relief print, thread, and fabric, 50 3/8 x 30 in. Courtesy of the artist. © M Kelley. Photo: John Schweikert

  • M Kelley. Lock (Provocation and Confinement), 2019. Relief print, thread, and fabric, 50 x 30 in. Courtesy of the artist. © M Kelley. Photo: John Schweikert

  • M Kelley. Unlock (Vision and Struggle), 2019. Relief print, thread, and fabric, 51 x 29 1/2 in. Courtesy of the artist. © M Kelley. Photo: John Schweikert

  • LEFT TO RIGHT: Jerry Bedor Phillips. they gathered on the streets after the results • we all stood up and said where we came from • our conversation began with tea •  she marched in protest then stood in hope • so there I was, in between two countries, on a ferry, from We Count: Four Voices, 2019. Colored pencil on paper, each sheet 15 x 11 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Jerry Bedor Phillips. Photo: John Schweikert

  • LEFT TO RIGHT: Jerry Bedor Phillips. as she spoke, different strands of her story became a strong braided band in my mind • they sang of light • existing in a bubble • confronting the fifty-eight • they walked arm-in-arm to hear him speak, their hopes weaving together with each step, from We Count: Four Voices, 2019. Colored pencil on paper, each sheet 15 x 11 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Jerry Bedor Phillips. Photo: John Schweikert

  • LEFT TO RIGHT: Jerry Bedor Phillips. thank goodness it was just a wheel •  chance encounter on the greenway • make eye contact before crossing • discovering the forgotten/reclaiming the found • watching neighborhoods change, from We Count: Four Voices, 2019. Colored pencil on paper, each sheet 15 x 11 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Jerry Bedor Phillips. Photo: John Schweikert

  • LEFT TO RIGHT: Jerry Bedor Phillips. live better •  is the sky foretelling our future • listen • capturing a changing city • phantom elegy, from We Count: Four Voices, 2019. Colored pencil on paper, each sheet 15 x 11 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Jerry Bedor Phillips. Photo: John Schweikert

  • Thaxton Waters II. Women Bear Armies but Still . . . , 2019. Acrylic on wood, with artificial flowers, 48 x 120 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Thaxton Waters II. Photo: John Schweikert

  • Donna Woodley. Meet Beverly Glaze, 2020. Oil on canvas, 67 x 57 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Donna Woodley. Photo: John Schweikert

  • Donna Woodley. Meet Beverly Glaze-Johnson, 2020. Oil on canvas, 67 x 57 in. Courtesy of the artist. © Donna Woodley. Photo: John Schweikert

On August 18, 1920, the Tennessee state legislature voted to ratify the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees and protects women’s right to vote. As the 36th state to approve the amendment, Tennessee completed the three-quarters majority needed to make it the law of the land. One hundred years later, this country holds elections with significantly fewer legal restrictions on who is allowed to vote. In attempting to count every person currently living in the United States, including individuals experiencing homelessness, the 2020 U.S. census has collected data that will determine the allocation of resources and funding, the boundaries of legislative and congressional districts, and the number of seats representing each state in the U.S. House of Representatives.

We Count: First-Time Voters honors the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment and the importance of civic engagement by highlighting the history of voting in the United States and the first voting experiences of a diverse group of Nashvillians. Five local artists created visual representations of these voting experiences in a variety of mediums.

All artworks appear courtesy of the artists, who retain the copyright to their work. All artwork photography: John Schweikert. Artist headshots: Aisha S. Kaikai (@ishpicturesque)


Click each artist’s name to visit their section of the exhibition.


 

 

Beizar Aradini

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

M Kelley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jerry Bedor Phillips

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thaxton Waters

 

 


 


 

 

 

Donna Woodley

 

 

 

 

 

We have more for you to see and enjoy!


 

 

 

We encourage you to make sure your voice is heard. To view guidelines and requirements for online voter registration in Tennessee, click this ballot box.

 

 

 

 

Organized by the Frist Art Museum

 

HCA Tri-Star

Presenting Sponsor

Ryman Hosp Partners Found

Supported in part by

Neal & Harwell

Supported in part by

MNAC

Supported in part by

TAC

Supported in part by

NEA Artworks

Supported in part by

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