The Arts & Culture Alliance is pleased to present five new exhibitions at The Emporium Center in downtown Knoxville from August 5-27. Most of the works will be for sale and may be purchased through the close of the exhibition by visiting in person or by visiting the online shop at

Tennessee Artists Association: 50 Years of Artistic Excellence: From the Past into the Future in the Lower Gallery

This new exhibition celebrates Tennessee Artist’s Association 50th anniversary as the area’s oldest member-supported arts organization. TAA began with five members who met for coffee. Highlights of the first year included an art workshop and a Spring Show. By 1978, it had more than 230 members from 34 cities in Tennessee. Shows expanded in the 1980s to include Pigeon Forge, Chattanooga, Kingsport, Nashville, and Children’s Hospital Fantasy of Trees. The 1990s saw TAA’s continued interest in social causes with shows supporting Children’s Hospital, the Scholastic Arts program for 7-12 grade students in 14 counties, and the sponsorship of a Boy Scout Explorer Post in the Arts.

Monthly meetings – free and open to anyone – at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Knoxville include practical art demonstrations, discussions, and opportunities for individual artists to get involved in learning, community and shows. Guests are welcome to the TAA gallery and artist studio at the Emporium, Suite 106.

New Work by Terra Madre: Women in Clay in the Upper Gallery

Terra Madre is a juried group of women clay artists founded in the year 2000 by female ceramic artists in East Tennessee. Their mission is to support each other in their clay work, advance the appreciation of ceramics in East Tennessee, and encourage each other in the pursuit of their dreams as artists and as women. Terra Madre members are affiliated with many juried and professional arts organizations. Collectively, the group exhibits in several shows annually; individually, their work has been exhibited all across the country and can be found in galleries, shops, juried fine craft shows and fairs, and in many private art collections.

Works by Sergio, Estefano, and Valeria Martínez & Héctor Saldivar in the Atrium

Sergio Martínez Ávila and his children live and work in Cantarranas, Honduras. He has 34 years of professional experience with primitivism, genre painting, and figurative art with exhibits in Europe, Asia, Canada, and Latin America.

Estefano Martínez and his sister, Valeria, are emerging artists in their last year of high school. Both have exhibited work in Honduras, where they have participated in muralistic activities since 2019.

Born in Mexico City in 1966, Héctor Saldivar began developing his artist talents later in life. He has participated in Casa HoLa events (part of HoLa Hora Latina) in Knoxville and the Tennessee Arts Commission in Nashville. He is an alebrijes artist working mainly with papier-mâché and clay but also paints with acrylics and oils. Alebrijes are brightly colored Mexican folk art sculptures of fantastical (fantasy/mythical) creatures. His art honors his Mexican roots.

Foothills Craft Guild Fine Crafts in the Display Case

Foothills Craft Guild is dedicated to encouraging the development and appreciation of arts and handicrafts

of all types, promoting high standards of workmanship in handicrafts, conducting educational programs on

handicrafts with all ages, sponsoring handicraft shows and demonstrations, and engaging in activities that contribute to the advancement, development, and appreciation of arts and handicrafts.

Featuring work by more than 15 guild members, it highlights their upcoming Tennessee Showcase of Fine Artisans, November 4-6 at the Expo Center.

Jack Retterer: Languages of Art on the North Wall

Art, in its purest form, often communicates deep and strong feelings, private thoughts, or shared events in the human experience. The Languages of Art is an exploration of these human experiences through both photographic and verbal artistic skills.

Jack Retterer first created photography to be followed up with a poetic interpretation of each image. However, he soon began to write the poems first and then seek an ideal image to reinforce the feelings, thoughts, and shared events of the poem.

Jack is a fine art photographer, teacher, and poet who is active in the arts community in East Tennessee. His American Impressionist style photography and large canvas prints have been on display throughout the area. Prior to his move to East Tennessee, Jack taught photography at Benedictine University in Illinois. Currently, he teaches Fine Art Photography at the University of Tennessee.

The exhibitions will be on display at the Emporium Center, located at 100 S. Gay Street in downtown Knoxville. The Emporium is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm and Saturday from 10 am to 1 pm. For more information, call 865-523-7543 or visit