Wandering from one piece to the next; exploring images in a wide array of artistic media; viewing the charcoal, acrylic, and oil; touching the alabaster, marble, bronze and travetine – the senses are awakened as you experience the beautiful renditions of the human form comprising the fine art exhibit entitled Body Sacred.

On display in its downtown location through September 30, Body Sacred is a collection of works by twelve women artists whose passion and talent are evidenced in their creative interpretations of the human body, particularly the female form. The artists speak powerfully to the experience of life in the female body, producing art reflecting a variety of cultural milieus. From underwater photography to stone sculpture, from wall-size oils and acrylics to equisite stone jewelry, the exhibit speaks of the intent of the artists to excel in the work as they admirably contribute to a worthy cause.

“The artists exhibiting in Body Sacred all live very different lives, standing tall in their own skin, bravely voicing their own stories. If we care to stop and listen – listen in the way they listen – to the feelings arising in our own bodies, to the promptings of the heart, to the tears behind our eyes, to the longing stirring from the forgotten depths within in, then we will recognize their story as our own story,” says Lynda Evans, Body Sacred organizer.

Evans is also a contributing artist, offering her other-worldly photographic imagery of women’s bodies in addition to her organizational skills. Other artists with work on display include Julie Warren Conn, Margarita Checa, Leiko Ikemura, Gail Foster, Felice Sharp, Kathleen Morris, Maggie Hasbrouck, Jeanie Tormanec, Denise Sanabria, Alison Oakes Harb, and Leonda Finke.

Following the opening and Patron and Artist Gala Fundraiser held on Thursday, August 31, the exhibit will remain on display at its current location at 128 South Gay Street in the building that was formerly the Lawson-McGee Library. Presenting sponsors, Lucille S. Thompson Family Foundation and WBIR TV-10, along with their fiscal sponsor A1LabArts, the proceeds from the gala auction and subsequent sales will benefit the local Knoxville Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Foundation and the Wellness Community of East Tennessee.

The Gala was well attended, with the multi-story home of Jo Mason and Gail Foster coming close to capacity, particularly on the first floor. Hors d'oeuvres were provided by some of the nicest restaurants in Knoxville. The Orangery provided some outstanding dark chocolates. The white and stainless steel second floor held not only the delectable sweets, but also some great live jazz with ample space to sit down with your coffee.

Body Sacred will be open to the free to the public during regular business hours during Sept. 1-29 at 128 South Gay Street, Knoxville, Tenn. For further information regarding Body Sacred, visit their Web site at www.bodysacred.org or email Rip Lydick at ripoeta1@hotmail.com or Lynda Evans at lyndaevans@comcast.net. Mailing address is Body Sacred, PO Box 10439, Knoxville, TN  37939. You may also visit A1LabArts, their fiscal sponsor, at www.a1labarts.org. They are currently seeking volunteer docents for the exhibit.

This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

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