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First Friday Art Exhibit - Arts & Culture Alliance Presents Works by Derrick Freeman

rainbow falls
Artwork by Derrick Freeman

The Arts & Culture Alliance will present a new exhibition of artwork by Knoxville artist Derrick Freeman, opening Friday, July 6, at 5:00 PM on the north side of the Balcony at the Emporium Center in Knoxville.

Derrick Freeman is a 21-year old who was diagnosed with autism at age two. At that time, he stopped talking. By the age of three, he began to draw, and it led to his way of commu­nicating with his family. Since that time, he has made outstanding contributions to his community through his gift of art. Derrick's art is and has been an inspiration to many families who have someone with a disability. Each piece of his art has a unique story to tell, and he has proven that regardless of any disability, each of us has something to give back to our community.

Derrick Freeman held the first Wilbur N. Daniel African-American art show at Austin Peay Uni­versity in observance of Disability Awareness. As a result, he has shown work at many other exhibitions throughout Tennessee. Derrick's art has been featured in several newspapers and magazines throughout Ten­nessee. His art was chosen to be on the cover of the Tennessee Disability Mega­Conference Cover Book for 2009. He recently started "Our Place" art classes for people with autism and other dis­abilities. Derrick recently received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the Arc of The Mid South. He also received The Temple Grandin Award for outstanding contri­butions to family, community and self. For more information on Derrick Freeman, visit

Works by Derrick Freeman will be displayed in the Balcony at the Emporium Center, 100 S. Gay Street, from July 6-27, 2012. An opening reception will take place as part of First Friday activities on July 6 from 5:00-9:00 PM with complimentary hors d'oeuvres. Gallery hours are Monday-Friday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM with additional hours on Saturday, July 7, from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM.

Published July 4, 2012

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