Artsclamation!: An art market within a party!

Artist Sarah Pollock of Knoxville specializes in oil paintings of landscapes and cityscapes. She is a former color stylist for Walt Disney Feature Animation.

Artsclamation! is an annual fine arts sale that is the only fundraiser for Covenant Health’s behavioral health unit, Peninsula Hospital. It’s also a heck of a fun party and a great way to kick off the holiday season — and maybe get some shopping done at the same time.

Held each year in early December in the Cathedral Hall of the Catholic Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus on Northshore Drive in Bearden, it showcases the juried art of more than 35 local and regional artisans. Judging by the crowd at its preview party last Friday, the exceedingly popular event has almost outgrown its venue.

The unfortunate fact is that one in four people in East Tennessee suffers from a mental health illness. However, there is a significant gap in funding for programs to serve these individuals compared to those with other diseases and diagnoses. Over the past 21 years, patrons of Artsclamation! have provided almost $2 million toward Peninsula’s mission. And they have scored some darned good art in the process!

From left, Tyler Janow, Anthony Wilson, Jen Sheehan and Gay Lyons. Tyler was the chair of this year’s Artsclamation! committee; Jen is development manager for Fort Sanders Foundation, the fundraising arm of Covenant Health.

This New York City scene was one of my favorite of Sarah Pollock’s oil paintings.

My friends Rosa Mar, left, and Dawn Ford attend the Artsclamation! preview party almost every year. It’s become a part of their holiday tradition.

Bethany Hallam, an oil painter from Knoxville, specializes in animal images. I loved her colorful pieces.

These were some of my favorite Bethany Hallam paintings at the preview.

From left, Duane and Marsha Grieve, Patrick Birmingham and Danny Edsell. Patrick and Danny are with Covenant Health.

Nazzy Hashemian and 2-D mixed media artist Joe Edward Swing of Nashville.

The piece in the middle is one of his that I really liked. It’s called “Clarinet Music.” Swing is a retired marketing and advertising exec with Jack Daniel Distillery.

Our friend Mary Bogert, general manager of the Knoxville Convention Center, and Alan Carmichael. Mary and Alan both have taken up painting themselves. She was one of the judges for this show.

Knoxville woodworker Douglas Molinas Lawrence has created more than 100 sculptural bud vases from various kinds of wood. Each is designed within the constraints of  a 6″ by 6″ by 2″ dimension of wood. Fascinating.

Guests Randy Merritt, left, and Andy Westbrook are both with The Christman Company.

Helen Hewitt, left, and Leslie Hale.

Everyone loved these chicken meatballs with cranberry gravy by Holly Hambright’s Gourmet’s Market Catering.

Katie Kline, left, and Madge Cleveland were browsing the offerings.

I loved that pickup truck at the top of this photo. It was at the booth of Beth Affolter of Spring Hill.

A signature appetizer from Holly Hambright: candied bacon! Hugely popular!

Doug Kennedy, left, and Chuck Griffin.


Tony and Sharon Spezia. He’s the retired longtime CEO of Covenant Health and he and his wife love this event.

Jewelry artist Tony Perrin of Nashville.

Some kind of delicious beef and feta on a stick!

Rick Fox, left, and Ralph Cianelli.

These end tables by Teshia Clapp were made from re-claimed spools used by a utility company. Very clever.

Always fun seeing Kent and Kim Lauth.

Martha Pierce of Joppa Mountain Pottery in Rutledge specializes in pottery plates featuring bees! Loved them!

Knoxville glass artist Susan Arbital and her husband, Jeff.

Alan Carmichael with our friend Gina Williams of Covenant Health.

If you are interested in contacting any of the artists featured in this post, Jen Sheehan of Covenant Health can help put you in touch with them. Her office phone number is (865) 531-5208; her email is [email protected].



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3 Responses to Artsclamation!: An art market within a party!

  1. Gay Lyons, on December 5th, 2023 at 6:50 pm said:

    Great turnout & great art. The setup was perfect for grazing, browsing, and chatting.

  2. Rusha Sams, on December 5th, 2023 at 7:43 pm said:

    Love the art this year! Thanks for posting so many photos of these creative pieces.

  3. Cynthia Moxley, on December 5th, 2023 at 9:55 pm said:

    Gay: I agree. It’s going to be hard to beat this venue if they decide they need to expand.

    Rusha: The art was amazing!

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