Traveling Exhibitions

The Gadsden Arts Center & Museum is committed to providing access to its collections through the loan of art objects to AAM accredited museums for educational purposes. The Museum’s Permanent Collection totals 187 objects representing Southeastern American Art, with emphasis on Southern Vernacular Art and Folk Art. Loans of art objects to qualified institutions for exhibition are an essential part of Gadsden Arts’ mission to foster understanding and appreciation of the visual arts and to enhance arts education, provide cultural opportunities, and to offer a depth of cultural and historical content to serve people of all ages.

For more information about the traveling exhibitions available for loan from Gadsden Arts, contact Curator of Exhibitions & Collections, (850) 627-5021.

Available Exhibitions

FOUND: Southern Vernacular Art

The majority of the Gadsden Arts Center & Museum’s Permanent Collection is works of Southern Vernacular Art. This traveling exhibition is comprised of a portion of the collection; approximately 37 works by 20 artists who were chosen as exemplars of Vernacular art; their idiosyncratic work is often created using found materials, of a style purely their own, and is often expressive of symbolism from the artists’ immediate regional American cultures and more distant African cultural roots.

This exhibition is centered around the work of the most famous Vernacular artist from the Southeast, Thornton Dial, Sr., an artist who is considered one of the most creative geniuses of his time and whose work has shattered the art world’s notion of “folk” and “outsider” art.

FOUND: Vernacular Art from the Gadsden Arts Center & Museum Permanent Collection is an invaluable national caliber cultural opportunity, featuring cutting edge art world subject matter, and with only 200 linear feet and a low rental fee, this exhibition is suitable for any museum’s space and budget. This exhibition was organized from a gift to Gadsden Arts received from the distinguished collection of Calynne and Lou Hill of Tallahassee, Florida.

Exhibition Details
Southern Vernacular Art
Exhibition Contents: 37 paintings, sculptures, and assemblages
Space needed: 175-200 linear feet
Catalogs: Exhibition Catalogs and Teacher’s Guides available for purchase
Crates: 10 wooden crates
Included: Files with text panel copy, publicity images, & sample press releases.
Contact: (850) 627-5021


Compelled to Create presents spirit-infused work by “Mr. Eddy” Mumma, an individual who was driven to create hundreds of works of unique and powerful art. “Mr. Eddy,” a lonely shut-in due to complications from diabetes, painted hundreds of portraits and then refused to sell them, as were his “companions.” A master of color and composition, Mumma’s highly stylized paintings vibrate with emotion.

Learn the amazing tale of how, upon Mumma’s death, his work was rescued by a dedicated art collector, and ended up in the collection of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Image: Eddy Mumma from the Gadsden Arts Permanent Collection, on display at the Mennello Museum of American Art, Orlando, FL, April – August

Exhibition Details
Compelled to Create
Exhibition Contents: 44 framed paintings, 5 works have paintings on both sides that can be exhibited as sculpture
Space needed: 200-250 linear feet
Book: Mr Eddy Lives by Anne E. Gilroy
Crates: 3 wooden crates
Included: Files with text panel copy, publicity images, & sample press releases.
Contact: (850) 627-5021


While Dial’s large-scale assemblages and sculptures have gained much attention, his drawings and paintings on paper have a particularly unifying style and concentration of subject matter. Most of these works feature women, often alongside an animal, like a tiger, fish, or bird, and speak to the relationships between men and women. His drawings are lyrical with female forms floating in space, twisting around tigers, executed in bold out-of-the-tube watercolors, or in soft charcoal and pencil lines.

In his 2011 book exclusively about Thornton Dial Sr.’s works on paper, Bernard L. Herman writes that the first quality a viewer perceives when encountering Dial’s drawings, “is movement at once balletic and ballistic, where dance and power coalesce.” This exhibition of 14 paintings are representative of Dial’s early frenetic, yet contemplative, works on paper.

Exhibition Details
Thornton Dial, Sr.
Exhibition Contents: 14 framed paintings on paper
Space needed: 60-75 linear feet
Crates: 5 Masterpak boxes
Included: Files with text panel copy, advertising images, & sample press releases.
Contact: (850) 627-5021

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