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Centennial Art Center’s gallery will host summer lineup of local artists featuring bronze castings, colorful ceramic art and photorealistic paintings.


Nashville, TN --- Metro Parks’ Centennial Art Center Gallery announces new summer lineup. The new exhibit will feature bronze and wax castings by Shelly Singleton, pottery and clay art by Tom Turnbull and photorealistic paintings by Joan Lawler. This compelling exhibit will open with an evening reception Friday, August 2 from 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.  The show will be on display through September 24, 2013.
Shelly Singleton has lived her entire life as an artist. Daughter of world famous AmEinsteinerican bronze sculptor, “Gib” [Gilbert] Singleton (known most prominently for creating the crosier carried by the Pope), Shelly was born into the artist’s tradition. Through a lifelong collaboration with her father, she learned the processes of sculpting, working with clay and casting bronze from a very young age. She was formally trained at Southern Illinois University and the Art Institute of Chicago. A talented painter and sculptor, her works are on display throughout the country including a half-block mural in SoHo, New York. Deeply spiritual, her sculptures evoke emotion through movement and expressive subject matter. More recently, her work has taken on a more “educational” tone, guiding the viewer through the life of prominent historical figures (as evidenced in Einstein and Da Vinci). Shelly’s bronze and wax castings will be on display throughout the gallery and in the Art Center’s courtyard.

Porcelain vessel by Tom Turnbull Next up in the summer lineup is Nashville potter, Tom Turnbull. No stranger to the local art scene, Tom Turnbull has had his hand in ceramics (literally) for nearly three decades. Tom is a Pennsylvania native that moved to Nashville where he founded Nashville's main center for ceramic supplies, Mid-South Ceramic Supply Company (which he sold about 5 years ago). He also invented the internationally distributed line of Opulence Glazes. In his home studio, Turnbull handcrafts Asian-inspired tiles, vases and dinnerware. His wheel-thrown porcelain work can be found as dinnerware in five-star restaurants, and recently thirty-six porcelain vessels were selected as part of a permanent collection for the national headquarters of the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia. Turnbull was the featured artist at its grand opening. He will show thrown porcelain vessels and clay tile works.

Rounding out the lineup is local painter Joan Lawler. Joan recalls  Lavender Lace by Joan Lawler acrylictrying to paint when she was young, "I loved experimenting with my crayons and tempera paints as a child, but I didn’t know how to use them to make pictures that I thought looked real. ‘Paint by Numbers’ came out during my childhood, and I experimented with that, but it still didn’t give me what I felt was a ‘real’ picture.” Setting aside her childhood interest in painting, Joan followed in her father’s footsteps and became an engineer. Joan’s mother took up painting after her children were grown and she had more time to herself to explore her own interests. After the passing of her mother, Joan inherited all of her art supplies. She opted for an early retirement from her engineer career and decided to put her mother’s art supplies to good use. In 2001, she pursued formal art training at O’More College of Design. Joan credits art teacher, Tim Murphy, with providing just the right amount of encouragement to pursue painting more seriously. Her background in engineering is evidenced in the tight structure of her landscapes and floral paintings. Gleaning inspiration from her garden, she paints vividly, creating impressive photorealistic florals and colorful landscapes. Centennial Art Center’s gallery manager, Josh Wagner, is excited to have Joan Lawler’s paintings on display again. Josh said, “I first saw [her] work at the Art Center ten years ago when I was a pottery student. I was struck by the vibrancy and precision of her paintings. Her images literally pop off the canvas. They were so beautiful, I bought one for myself.” The Herb Garden in the Art Center’s courtyard (sponsored by the Herb Society of Nashville) will provide a beautiful backdrop for the exhibit, and with the realism expressed in Joan’s paintings, it will be like bringing the Herb Garden indoors.

The Centennial Art Center Gallery is free and open to the public.
The exhibit is open August 2-September 24, 2013.
Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday 9am-5pm.
For more information, call the Centennial Art Center at (615) 862-8442 or visit online: or find them on facebook.