Tennessee Furniture Exhibit Opens at State Museum

A new exhibition celebrating Tennessee's vast furniture collection opens April 20, 2024.

Tennessee Furniture: Selections from the Tennessee State Museum Collection opens at the Tennessee State Museum on Saturday, April 20, 2024. The exhibition celebrates the Museum’s vast furniture collection and explores the stories of the people and events connected to them. Tennessee Furniture features over 45 pieces of furniture and supporting artifacts ranging from the late 18th century to works by contemporary furniture makers.

Showcasing over 200 years of Tennessee history through the selected pieces, the exhibition will enlighten visitors on the traditions, lifestyles, and experiences of past Tennesseans. Within the last few decades, there has been increased interest in the study of Tennessee furniture. To develop this exhibit, the Museum’s curatorial team worked with scholars and professionals, including Tiffany Momon, PhD. (Assistant Professor of History at Sewanee, The University of the South; Founder of the Black Craftspeople Digital Archive), Tracey Parks (Independent Scholar), and Daniel K. Ackermann, PhD.(chief curator & director of Collections, Research and Archaeology at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts).

The exhibition invites visitors to think about furniture in new ways. It does so by emphasizing four distinct areas of interest: Furniture In Action, Made By Hands, Furniture Makers, and Furniture As Art. These sections explore how furniture was used in the home, the materials and techniques used by craftspeople, the business of furniture making, and the artistry in Tennessee furniture.

Tennessee Furniture aims to enrich the discussion of how furniture is a valuable channel to the stories of Tennessee’s past. With topics ranging from commerce, migration, artistry, health, and more, the exhibition offers something for all visitors.

For more information visit: tnmuseum.org/tnfurniture.

The Tennessee State Museum, celebrating its 87th Anniversary in 2024, is free and open to the public Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. For more information on exhibitions and events, please visit TNMuseum.org.

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