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New Overton Arts Council Looks To Impact, Education

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
New Overton Arts Council Looks To Impact, Education

Overton County’s new Arts Council aims to cultivate a community dedicated to exposure for artists and appreciation for the visual arts.

Arts Council President Tim Richardson said the council has seven members and he plans to add two more. He said the council will create opportunities for people to gather, socialize, and create art for Overton County to enjoy.

“We ultimately have kind of an economic development and tourism goal as well,” Richardson said. “We want to ultimately attract more visitors to Overton County with the arts with things like festivals and mixers.”

Richardson said opportunities for art education will be at the forefront of the council’s mission. He said environments where like-minded people who are passionate about the arts contribute to the cultural infrastructure of a community.

“It kind of, you know, gives people peace of mind,” Richardson said. “It’s sometimes challenging to deal with in a good way. It encourages people to kind of stretch themselves intellectually or aesthetically.”

Overton County Chamber CEO Shannon Cantrell presented the idea last spring. Richardson said they plan to advocate for access to good art instruction, appreciation, and history among K-12 students.

“You never know,” Richardson said. “There are kids who may not realize that they have a talent for drawing or have a talent for painting unless they have the opportunity to be exposed to teachers and to artists. So that’s a big part of what we want to do.”

He said the group will meet every other month for its first year to plan events and raise awareness for the council’s goals. He said eventually, they hope to put together a more informal advisory board for people who have a passion for art but do not have the time to commit to serving on a committee.

“There is a rich history of the visual arts here,” Richardson said. “We’re proud to kind of celebrate that and, hopefully, perpetuate that and build on that.”


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