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ART + BUSINESS SYMPOSIUM
PRESENTED BY ART ROUND TENNESSEE
MARCH 11, 2023 TN TECH WESLEY FOUNDATION
A professional development opportunity for artists, musicians, and other CREATIVE entrepeneurs LOOKING TO BEGIN OR ADVANCE THEIR CREATIVE CAREERS
Artwork by Matt Knieling
THANK YOU ALL FOR A GREAT Symposium!
We are SO grateful for those that made this event possible: Cookeville Arts Council, The Tn Tech Wesley Foundation, Meg's Bread, Soul Craft Coffee, The Silver Fern, and our amazing speakers and panelists.
learn more about the speakers & topics discussed at this year's art + Business Symposium BELOW:
SPEAKERS & PANELISTS:
WRITER, PERFORMER, & RADIO HOST
Caroline Moore is a writer, performer, and radio host for the Upper Cumberland’s Lite Rock 95.9. During her six years in New York City, she studied sketch comedy, improv, and writing- eventually producing and starring in her own monthly solo variety show at The People’s Improv Theatre. In 2020, she left The Big Apple™ and returned to her native Cookeville, where she filled her newfound free time on social media. Her countless hours spent doomscrolling Twitter, updating her Instagram stories, and posting self-made videos on TikTok have led her to this moment, and she is excited to share her experiences and knowledge with you!
FIBER ARTIST & EDUCATOR
Fiber artist, Rena Wood, received her BFA in Fibers from the Kansas City Art Institute and MFA from the Department of Craft/Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is an Assistant Professor of Fiber Art at Tennessee Tech University’s Appalachian Center for Craft. As a Fiber Arts educator, she has taught workshops on embroidery and fiber processes at art centers and craft schools throughout the country. Previously, she was a Visiting Instructor at Bloomsburg University in Pennsylvania and a Visiting Assistant Professor at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY. Rena has been an Artist in Residence at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft in Houston, TX, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Gatlinburg, TN, and at the Craft Alliance in St. Louis, MO. Her work has been shown nationally in solo and group exhibitions. Rena is a recipient of a Tennessee Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowship in Craft for 2023.
DR. COLIN HILL
MUSICIAN & EDUCATOR
Dr. Colin Hill is the Associate Professor of Percussion at Tennessee Tech University and currently serves as the Director of the School of Music. As an active performer, Colin has been invited to perform concerts throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia and performs regularly with the BluHill Percussion Duo, Bryan Symphony Orchestra, and the TTU Faculty Jazz Combo. As an educator, he has appeared as a guest artist and clinician at numerous high schools and universities throughout the United States as well as several PAS Days of Percussion and PAS International Conventions. Colin holds degrees from The University of North Texas (B.M.), Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University (M.M.), and The University of Kentucky (D.M.A) and is a sponsored artist of Innovative Percussion, Grover Pro Percussion, Sabian Cymbals, Evans Drumheads, and Pearl/Adams. Colin has served on the Percussive Arts Society Education Committee and is the Immediate past President of the Tennessee Chapter of the Percussive Arts Society.
CPA, SMALL BUSINESS ACCOUNTING
Nicole Mathis is a CPA that built her practice and her career focusing on small businesses. She believes small businesses are not only the backbone of a great community, but a big part of many people’s dreams. However, most people do not understand the requirements for setting up a business and thE filings and reports that need to be done with the city, county, state and federal government. Nicole believes in educating and assisting her clients, while trying to keep it as simple as possible for them to do what they love without having to stress over things they may not fully understand. Nicole graduated cum laude with a degree in Accounting from Tennessee Technological University in 1999 and received her CPA license that same year. She started her career as a member of the audit department at LBMC in Brentwood, TN. After taking some time off to focus on being a mom, Nicole started back to work assisting with her family’s own small business. It was at that time she saw the need for small businesses to have someone to come along side them to be a part of their team, not just someone to file annual tax returns. Her favorite moments are when she celebrates with her clients as they reach their goals, exceed expectations, and have moments of success.
CERAMIC ARTIST & GALLERY OWNER
Thor Kevin McNeil was born November 1959 in his Grandmother’s house in Washington D.C. At the age of 9, he and his younger brother were placed into the Georgia Sheriff’s Boy’s Ranch, a home for underprivileged children. He graduated with honors, as the Senior class president at Lowndes County High School in 1978 and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Valdosta State College in Valdosta, GA. In 1988, Thor took a detour as he went to work as a manager in a Large Retail Chain. In 1997, Thor started the second phase of his art career and in 1999 opened the Fragrant Mushroom Gallery in Sparta, with his wife Cherri. The Fragrant Mushroom was Sparta’s first gallery in their 193-year history. Twenty- two years later the Fragrant Mushroom is in it’s third and final location in Historic downtown Sparta. Hours are Monday-Saturday 9-5.
JEWELER & CO-OWNER OF THE SILVER FERN
Brie Flora is an artist, jeweler, and educator living in Cookeville, Tennessee. Brie received a dual BFA from Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Metalsmithing + Jewelry and Art Education, May 2015. She has been featured in over 10 group exhibitions, recently including "Plan B" a traveling exhibition 2022-2023. Brie was selected to participate as an Emerging Artist in Resident at Salem Art Works (2018), was awarded Best New Exhibitor (2019 Tennessee Craft), Outstanding Achievement in Jewelry (2019 Amdur Productions), and was given the Lillian Bardield Award (2014 Mobilia). Brie is also the founder of a contemporary jewelry exhibition project called Guidelines. For more info, follow @guidelines_jewelry on instagram. Currently se teaches workshops both virtually and in person, and works part time as a Virtual Teacher Assistant and does social media marketing at Metalwerx (Waltham MA). Brie also co-owns a gallery and storefront in Cookeville TN called, The Silver Fern, which opened in July 2021.
OWNER OF GLASS TANGERINE
Emma has spent the past 18 years figuring out what she wanted to be when she grew up. She has a BFA in Art Education & Fibers from the ACC, and has worked in multiple jobs including 2 years at Vanderbilt Medical Center in a cancer research lab, 2 years at an inpatient psychiatric hospital at CRMC and was a licensed mental health therapist for 8 years in private practice before jumping into entrepreneurship and opening Glass Tangerine July of 2022. The concept behind her business is a community centered houseplant and floral shop with a full mercantile of goods from local artists and makers. Glass Tangerine focuses on not only retail but immersive workshops and classes, pop ups and events to highlight and showcase other small business and makers in the UC. Through a difficult
transition, she moved away from a professional career and into small business ownership, completely transforming her day to day life, and bringing a lot of life (and greenery) to the WestSide! Emma’s unique
approach to her store, from the styling, to the items + events offered has brought a unique artistic flair to plant parenthood in the Upper Cumberland.
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