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Emporium features new exhibitions and artist demos
January 6, 2022

Help celebrate local artists and enjoy new exhibitions and artist demos! Friday, January 7, from 5:00 – 9:00 PM at the Emporium Center, 100 S. Gay Street, downtown Knoxville Hosted by the Arts & Culture Alliance.

emporium exhibition

The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Commission is partnering with the Arts & Culture Alliance to provide this seventh annual juried exhibition developed to recognize local artists and honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The exhibit features works by 24 artists who reflect the themes of Unity, Community, Love, Reconciliation, Social Justice, and Civil Rights.

The artists include: Aad Berlijn, Linda Blair, Bill Capshaw, Elle Colquitt, Tina Curry, Yvonne Dalschen, Anthony Donaldson, Susana Esrequis, Diana Ferguson, Perry Flanagan, Elena Ganusova, Alan Jones, Chuck Jones, Robi Keylon, Bonnie Licata, Brian Melton, Sylvia Milanez, Carolyn Moore, Mary Nietling, Mary Ruden, Tracye Sowders, Terri Swaggerty, Rae Taylor, Lyndsey Ullom

The MLK Gallery of Arts Tribute exhibition will kick-off the 2022 celebrations (January 12-17, 2022 and other dates throughout the year). For more information, visit

emporium landscapes exhibition

Anna Rykaczewska was born, lived in and received her education in Warsaw, Poland. She graduated from the High School of Fine Arts where she studied painting, sculpture, graphics, costume design, scenography, jewelry design, and photography. She then earned a master’s degree in art history at the University of Warsaw. Rykaczewska worked for seven years as the Art Specialist and Designer at Ars Christiana, the premiere and largest company in Poland specializing in religious art. She has resided in many European countries and has lived in the United States since 1997.

...I share my vision of the beauty that I find in nature. Observing nature is a fascination of mine. I love noting the colors, shapes, light, and atmosphere - I see the world as a beautiful painting. Capturing these observations, and the emotions they rouse in me, on canvas and in photos brings me great joy. The paintings and photographs presented for this exhibition are reflections of the delight stirred in me by the diverse formations of the wonders of the world which I have seen. In the abstract compositions, I wanted to render the rhythm, lines, and shapes of water and wind, like artists, immortalized in stone.


emporium dream exhibition

With Suyã, I want to reconnect with my audience in a new adventure of colors, poetry, dreams and stories. Within this exhibition, my world of colors and compositions manifest into abstract environments. First, viewers will encounter Míne télamû (Child of my land) as they begin a journey into my dreams. This exhibition represents a land of my past, a land that raised me. Before viewers “awake” from my dreams, they will have crossed many lands and seas only to find themselves shipwrecked and remembering where they came from – a dream that connects them to their ancestors.

Desiderio Manresa Bodipo, artistically known as Mene Manresa, was born on the island of Annobon (Equatorial Guinea). From an early age, he studied drawing, painting and ceramics at the Hispano Guinean Cultural Center in Malabo. He became part of the Monte Alen project where he was able to expand his skills as an artist along with professional artists from Spain. Mene Manresa has participated in several artistic competitions in Equatorial Guinea and has won several awards. He expanded his knowledge in graphic design, sculpture, animation, and in entertainment (circus), however he is most recognized for his paintings.

emporium colorful world exhibition

My art is about color, depth and movement. An abstract of a different style.

Michael Mann has been an artistic person since the age of ten. He completed many drawings, mostly within the realm of architecture: floor plans and blueprints. While he has painted interiors and exteriors of houses and fences, he never painted a canvas until turning 60 years old in 2020. After giving away one of his purchased abstract paintings, he sought a way to “replace” it by putting brush to canvas, and from then on, he has painted nearly 100 works in just 18 months. He is excited to share 21 of these new works in his debut exhibition. His favorite artist and a great inspiration is Jackson Pollock.

emporium light exhibition

This new exhibition features gouache, ink and watercolor paintings as well as ceramic sculptures by father and son Pepe and Jose Calabres.

It is not easy to discern what exactly art is, but we know it has something to do with "energy" because all civilizations have told their stories through their art and not because of their money or weapons. As artists, we are assured that when someone is in front of a work of art, rather than knowing it, they can feel it. A work of art is the witness of a story, of a journey. Each of our pieces are a fragment of many life stories. Tiny pieces of learning that are marked by situations that are not exclusively ours; all of our stories are in one way or another connected to everyone else’s stories.

Pepe Calabres was born in Valencia, Venezuela in 1947 and is an artist and graphic designer who graduated from the Royal London College of Arts and Printing of England specializing in typographic design. He is recognized for being a sculptor, ceramist, writer, jeweler and theater director. He has received four national art awards and more than 150 exhibitions to his credit. Jose Calabres was born in Trujillo, Venezuela, in 1980. The son of Pepe Calabres, he is a musician, photographer, video editor and journalist and is recognized for being a ceramist, screenwriter, sculptor and filmmaker. He has learned and worked ceramics with his father since a young age and in 2000, he officially became part of the production team of Pepe Calabres. He has produced visual arts and opening performances for Pepe Calabres exhibitions, three World Bodypaint Festivals, and television shows for several worldwide broadcasting companies.

These exhibitions are on display January 7 – 30, 2022.

Gallery hours are Monday-Friday, 9 AM – 5 PM and Sunday, January 30, 10 AM – 1 PM (closed Saturdays in January and Monday, January 17).

Looking for parking? Over 5,500 parking spaces are free on weeknights when you enter the garage or lot after 6:00 PM. Find your parking spot!

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