The annual Harding Art Show, now entering its 45th year, is always a highly anticipated event. This year’s show opens April 30 and offers a stacked lineup of exciting artists from around the country as well as many based in and around Nashville. Each day on Instagram (@thehardingartshow), we see more gorgeous pieces that are building excitement about featured works. With a repertoire of creators covering painting, sculpture, pencil work, photography and jewelry, here are a few of the artists we are anticipating bringing incredible things to the upcoming event.
Katie Madden, painting and thriving in Nashville for almost a decade now, uses acrylics and mixed mediums to create transitional paintings that are perfect for the home. Her attraction to neutral aesthetics and softer shades allows for paintings that can, as she sees it, “mix into any room and not just be married to one space.” An artist who prefers to paint barefoot, Katie pulls inspiration from music and interior design and surrounds herself with Nashville’s many designers. Her love of coffee table books, color schemes and decor bleeds through to her work, making it easy to envision any of her pieces already on your wall at home. katiemaddenfineart.com, @katiemaddenfineart
Kate Harrold is creating her own reality through conceptual photography. Her unique pieces are inspired by childlike wonder and whimsy, and this hopeful nature is stamped across her creations. Kate says that she was pushed to experiment in her photography by her husband, Jason Brueck, with whom she co-owns a gallery in East Nashville, Raven and Whale. Both artists utilize digital construction, and Kate believes they have found ways to influence each other while remaining thoroughly original in their individual paths. Talk about a power couple — Kate and Jason will be sharing a booth at the show. kateharrold.com, @kateharroldphotography
Richard Bowers takes the idea that “slow and steady wins the race” to the next level. A self-taught artist who uses pencil work to create photorealistic creations, Richard can spend up to 100 hours on a larger piece. He acknowledges that this medium is slow and laborious and will often bounce between two or three pieces at a time, playing podcasts and taking coffee breaks at Frothy Monkey to stay engaged. richardbowersart.com, @richardbowersart
CARDEN AVENUE JEWELRY
No one is having more fun than Suzanne Crook and Carolyn Greenfield, the visionaries behind Carden Avenue Jewelry. Their organic partnership grew from their mutual desire to find a creative outlet that allowed them to balance their time as mothers. Their pieces are often vintage-inspired, built around a jewel, cross or coin found at an antique mall, but the magic of Carden Avenue is in the way that a piece can reflect the style of the person wearing it, always on-trend but never too “trendy.” Suzanne and Carolyn describe their brand as “classic with an edge” — a phrase that could not be more apt for the humor, warmth and drive of the founders. cardenavenue.com, @cardenavenue
Blaire Wheeler is walking her own line: finding the balance between the abstract and the real. Her current collection strives to capture detail and realism with what she describes as “a painterly touch” through texture, color or composition that can’t be captured in a photograph. Blaire pulls inspiration from everyday experiences and says she doesn’t need an exotic trip to jump into a project. Instead, she can pull from a memory, a feeling, or something as simple as the color of a building nearby. In her fourth appearance for Harding, we’re excited to see what she brings to the show with her personal — and painterly — touch. blairwheelerart.com, @blairwheelerart
Shane is an explorer. A self-taught artist, Shane creates moody, dreamscape pieces that take viewers on a journey, exploring the balance of dark and light. Shane sees his work as meditative, and his pieces are often a voyage through whatever emotions he’s feeling at the time of creating. He believes this is reflected in the viewing experience — what some see as a landscape emerging into morning, others may see as descending into night. He believes a piece can be “like a mirror,” reflecting whatever stage of life the viewer may be in at the time, eliciting a reaction, and helping to work through these feelings. Look for some of his best work at the show. shaneartistry.com, @shane.artistry
The 2020 Harding Art Show will be held at Harding Academy from April 30th – May 2nd. See you there!