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New Student Art Exhibition Opens In The Country Music Hall Of Fame® And Museum’s Taylor Swift Education Center

March 28, 2024

Metro Nashville Public School students created the artworks presented in the Sources of Me exhibit.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mar. 28, 2024 – The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum recently unveiled a new exhibition in the Taylor Swift Education Center titled Sources of Me featuring artworks by Metro Nashville Public School students. The artworks were inspired by Thomas Hart Benton’s iconic final painting “The Sources of Country Music,” which hangs in the museum’s Hall of Fame Rotunda and depicts the musical and cultural roots of country music. Commissioned in 1973 by the museum, the six-foot by ten-foot mural is a synthesis of the artist, country music subject matter and the museum’s educational mission.

The students were asked to produce artworks showing their own explorations of “sources” for various topics to which they feel some connection. For inspiration, participants immersed themselves in the life and artistic contributions of Benton while viewing the museum’s current exhibit An American Masterwork: Thomas Hart Benton’s “Sources of Country Music” at 50. The exhibit explores Benton’s artistic process in creating the painting and celebrates the 50th anniversary of its commissioning. Students also explored the museum’s galleries — many actively searching for and sketching objects that resonated with their individual narratives.

For their finished pieces, students intertwined their stories with Benton’s vision by focusing on his use of imagery, color and ideals. Driven by a mix of cultural and personal influences including music, community and family, this student exhibit represents a diverse range of perspectives rooted in individual life experiences. Topics explored in the resulting artwork include a variety of subjects, from music-related topics such as disco, hip-hop and jazz to explorations around interracial marriages, the struggles of being a teenager, and transgender activism.

This is the sixth student art exhibit that the museum and Metro Nashville Public School students have mounted since the Taylor Swift Education Center opened in 2014.

Visit the museum’s website to meet the artists and learn more about the exhibit.

Admission to the exhibits and paintings are included with museum tickets, which can be purchased on the museum’s website.

Tennessee children ages 18 and under from Cheatham, Davidson, Robertson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson and Wilson counties receive free museum admission as part of Community Counts: Museum Admission Program for Locals. Up to two accompanying adults receive 25% off admission. Proof of residency required. For more information, please visit Community Counts or inquire at the Museum Box Office. Community Counts Passports are available for check out through Nashville Public Library for two free adult admissions.

Museum programs for schools are funded in part by Chet Atkins Music Education Fund of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee; CMA; CMA Foundation; Dollar General Literacy Foundation; the Dinah and Fred Gretsch Family; Hello in There Foundation; Isermann Family Foundation; The Les Paul Foundation; Martin Guitar Charitable Foundation; The Memorial Foundation; Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission; Nail Family Foundation; Nashville Predators Foundation; National Endowment for the Arts; PNC Grow Up Great; and Tennessee Arts Commission.

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