Claude Monet painted his legendary water lilies in dark reds while he had severely impaired eyesight. Although blind at the end of his life, his blurred impressions of nature made him one of the most famous artists of all time. Students at the Tennessee School for the Blind have not let physical challenges keep them from creating visual arts, either.
As a prelude to “Art Beyond Sight Awareness Month” in October, the Tennessee State Library & Archives (TSLA) is exhibiting artwork created by students at the Tennessee School for the Blind. Art Beyond Sight is a national program that promotes art education for the blind and vision impaired.
The free exhibit opens Sept. 6 in the lobby of TSLA’s building in downtown Nashville. The exhibit will remain on display until Sept. 30. The exhibit is accessible during TSLA’s normal business hours, Tuesdays through Saturdays from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
The TSLA building is located at 403 Seventh Avenue North in Nashville, next to the State Capitol. Parking is available around the building.
“We are happy to exhibit the artwork from the Tennessee School for the Blind for a second year,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “People who missed last year’s exhibit may not realize just how talented and creative these students are. I encourage as many people as possible to view this year’s exhibit and get a better understanding of what these young people are capable of doing.”
Items on display will include work in a variety of different artistic mediums, including paintings, sculpture and ceramics. The centerpiece of the display will be the school’s mascot: Dot, a paper mâché tiger made from scraps of Braille paper. Dot is on permanent loan to TSLA and, unlike many art exhibits, is meant to be touched rather than merely observed.
The exhibit was organized with the assistance of the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, which is part of TSLA.
The Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped provides audio books, Braille books, large print books and other free library services to Tennesseans who are unable to read standard print due to visual or physical disabilities. More information about the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped is available at: http://tn.gov/tsla/lbph.