2nd anniversary for Tennessee Artisan Market

The Tennessee Artisan Market, which opened in December 2010 at The Renaissance Center, celebrates their 2nd anniversary with an Annual Holiday Sale, expanded holiday hours and the addition of books, music and Artisan Foods, including local farm products and Pick Tennessee Products.

The market, which features art, crafts and goods made exclusively by Tennessee artisans, now includes more than 175 artisans from across the state, from the Great Smokey Mountains in the east to the banks of the Mississippi River in the west.

The store was originally designed to showcase Tennessee artists and their wares including paintings and sculptures, crafts such as pottery and jewelry, as well as handmade furniture and stained glass. In the past year the market added products from local book authors and musicians and is now offering local artisan foods. Prices for items in the market range from $2 greeting-card prints to large paintings for several thousands of dollars.

“We get a lot of requests for Tennessee food products from people traveling the state,” said Bob Kucher, senior director of Fine Arts. “So it was a natural move to now offer those products, including locally made honey, sauces, jams and jellies, sweets and candies and baked goods.”

The recent Artisan & Food Fair presented by the Tennessee Artisan Market and Local Table magazine on Oct. 27 helped introduce the store to many Tennessee food producers who have since joined the market. “We hope to continue adding these delicious goods,” Kucher said.

In celebration of the 2nd year anniversary, the Tennessee Artisan Market has scheduled a Holiday Sale, artisan demonstrations and special shopping opportunities, including:

20 percent off all items (except books, CDs and food) from Black Friday (Nov. 23) through Dec. 24. And 10 percent off of books, CDs and food from Black Friday (Nov. 23) through Dec. 24.

Purchase $40 or more in the market and receive two free tickets to the CyberSphere full-dome Digital Theater (to be used on any date – CyberSphere shows are presently scheduled for Saturdays)

Purchase $100 or more and receive 2 free tickets to “A Christmas Carol, The Musical” in the Performance Hall. Presented by the Renaissance Players, the show runs from Nov. 30 – Dec. 16 on Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Expanded holiday hours, including Sundays in December.

Free artisan demonstrations and artist meet and greets on Saturday, Dec. 15, all day, various crafts.

Drawing for a Curt Brock Blown Glass Vase, valued at $125, on Saturday, Dec. 15. Visitors to The Renaissance Center can fill out an entry ticket in the market.

The Tennessee Artisan Market is closed Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 22) but open Black Friday and Saturday, Nov. 24, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. In addition to the regular hours Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., the market will be open Sundays in Dec. (Dec. 2, 9, 16 and 23), 1 – 5 p.m., and on Christmas Eve Day: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Recently the market also added books from Tennessee authors as well as select CDs from musicians who have performed at The Renaissance Center.

Featured authors include:

  • Tammy Algood: “The Complete Southern Cook” and “Farm Fresh Southern Cooking”
  • Patsy Caldwell: “Bless Your Heart: Saving the World One Dish at a Time” and “You Be Sweet: Sharing Your Heart One Dessert at a Time”
  • Maryann Byrd: “The Rise of the Southern Biscuit”
  • Stella Parton: “Tell It Sister, Tell It”
  • Robert Cogswell and Dean Dixon: “Tradition: Tennessee Lives and Legacies”
  • Mary Phelps: “Booger: A Tall Take of the Mountains”
  • Brad Staggs: “Spend-A-Little, Save-A-Lot Home Improvements”
  • Debbie Watts: “Wordabulous! Celebrating the Positive Power of Words”

Featured CDs by local musicians include:

  • Farmer Jason: “Rockin’ in the Forest”
  • The WannaBeatles: “The WannaBeatles: Old School/New School” and “Fab Fan Memories: The Beatles Bond”
  • Stella Parton: “Tell It Sister, Tell It”
  • Linda Sack: “A Mountain Dulcimer Christmas,” “The Lilies So Fair” and “Nashville Dulcimer Quartet: Four Part Inventions”
  • Tom Shinness: “Many Waters,” “Translucent Harp” and “Escape”
  • Less Kerr: “Southern Sound Sessions”, “New Orleans Set,” “Crawfish Caravan” and “Christmas on the Coast”. Les Kerr and The Bayou Band will present a Mardi Gras Fat Tuesday concert and dinner at the center’s Gaslight Dinner Theatre on Friday, Feb. 1, 2013.
  • The market, which offers a consignment-based retail opportunity to Tennessee artists, includes works from both active professionals and qualified hobbyists. It has become so popular with the creative community that it’s been expanded from the 2,000 square feet of the former bookstore to include an additional 800 square feet of the former music piano lab. Artists and local food producers interested in selling their products at the Tennessee Artisan Market should contact Lisa Wright, Lisa.Wright@rcenter.org, (615) 740-5512.

“We have a wonderful extended family of talented artisans and musicians involved in the center,” Kucher said. “So if there’s an interest in any particular craft, we can certainly schedule a free demonstration, workshop or continuing class in that technique,” Kucher said. Artisan demonstrations and workshops can also be designed for field trips and groups and the Tennessee Artisan Market is also available for private parties and events such as a recent gathering and presentation for Tennessee interior designers.

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