At the Frist: Eric Carle, Family Day Festival and Frist Friday

Eric Carle. Illustration for The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Philomel Books). Collection of Eric and Barbara Carle, courtesy of The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst, MA. © 1969, 1987

Eric Carle’s Picture Books: Celebrating 50 Years of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” runs October 18, 2019 – February 23, 2020 in the Upper-Level Galleries of the Frist Art Museum. Eric Carle (b. 1929) is one of the most acclaimed and beloved illustrators of our time. The creator of more than 70 books, Carle combines winsome stories and exuberant collages that appeal to young readers and adults alike. His signature artistic technique is collage, made by hand-painting many sheets of tissue paper and then cutting, assembling, and gluing the paper onto illustration board.

Eric Carle’s Picture Books: Celebrating 50 Years of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” explores the artist’s personal history and interests, varied subjects, materials, and artistic techniques. The exhibition presents nearly 100 original artworks spanning five decades of Carle’s picture-book career. On view are illustrations ranging from Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, his 1967 collaboration with Bill Martin, Jr., to The Nonsense Show, his playful ode to Surrealism published in 2015. Between these milestones, twenty-two familiar titles are represented with a special section devoted to the golden anniversary of The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

While Carle’s stories are charming, they teach essential lessons, too. As children read about animals, families, and fables, they also learn their colors, letters, and numbers. Added design elements—such as holes, flaps, and sounds—make reading accessible and fun. For half a century, Carle has inspired children to fall in love with books. Eric Carle’s Picture Books: Celebrating 50 Years of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” was organized by The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst, Massachusetts.

While visiting the exhibition, be sure to spend some time in the book nooks, where you can enjoy reading books by Eric Carle. His stories have been translated into many of the world languages spoken in our community, including French, Italian, Kurdish, Somali, and Spanish. There is also a Braille edition of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Photography of Eric Carle’s Picture Books: Celebrating 50 Years of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” for personal use is allowed. Flash, monopods, tripods, and video cameras are prohibited in all galleries.

This Sunday, October 27, 2019 is Frist Free Family Festival Day, with free admission from 1:00–5:30 p.m.  See Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists in the Ingram Gallery, Main Level; Eric Carle’s Picture Books: Celebrating 50 Years of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” in the  Upper-Level Galleries; OSGEMEOS: In between in the Gordon Contemporary Artists Project Gallery, Main Level; and Murals of North Nashville Now in the Conte Community Arts Gallery, Main Level; all free along with special activities.

Coming November 8, 2019 is Frist Friday: Murals + Mics from 6:00–9:00 p.m. Enjoy live performances by Daisha McBride, Rashad thaPoet, and Southern Word + gallery programs celebrating the current exhibitions. Free to members and to visitors 18 and younger; $15 college students with ID; $20 general admission. Discounted tickets for seniors and military will be available only at the door. Inspired by the exhibitions Murals of North Nashville Now and OSGEMEOS: In between, the evening will offer visitors opportunities to experience art in new and unexpected ways with live performances, interactive gallery activities, and food and beverage specials.

Rashad thaPoet in the Auditorium, 6:15–7:00 p.m. Rashad Rayford, a.k.a. Rashad thaPoet, is an activist, actor, and award-winning spoken-word artist who captivated audiences during Nick Cave: Feat. Nashville and our June 2018 “Happening.” He will kick off the evening with his energetic and soulful blend of spoken word and hip hop.

Daisha McBride in the Auditorium, 7:30–8:45 p.m. Daisha McBride began rapping when she was ten years old, living in Knoxville. In the years since, she’s honed her songwriting skills, grown a fan base by posting freestyle videos on social media, and earned a music business degree at Middle Tennessee State University. Now a Nashvillian, McBride has released two EPs, and in 2018 she was named “Best Rapper / Hip-Hop Act” and “Hip Hop Newcomer of the Year” in the Nashville Scene. Citing Missy Elliot and Nicki Minaj as influences, McBride continues to push herself into new territory. On her debut full-length, WILD (2019), which features Evan Dupri, Mike Floss, and other guest artists, she addresses struggles from the personal to societal.

Southern Word in the Galleries, throughout the evening: Founded on a passion for serving youth, Southern Word has been a positive influence on the Nashville community and beyond since 2008. It equips participants with the tools to become thoughtful creators through the outlets of writing, music, and performance. Diligently responding to educational and youth development challenges, the organization has reached more than 7,500 youth, 67 schools, and 12 Tennessee counties. Hear Southern Word youth poets in the galleries as they perform original spoken-word pieces. A Southern Word DJ will spin tracks between sets.

One Drop Ink Temporary Tattoo Station with Elisheba Israel Mrozik in the Grand Lobby, while supplies last. Internationally recognized tattoo artist Elisheba Israel Mrozik has been working in graphic design, anime, and fine art since 2006. She began tattooing in 2010 and, a year later, she opened One Drop Ink Tattoo Parlour and Gallery in North Nashville. She was named Nashville Tattoo Artist of the Year by Indieville TV in 2015, and appeared in the international TV show Inkmaster. Her mural Unmask ’Em is featured in the exhibition Murals of North Nashville Now. Mrozik will host a temporary tattoo station, featuring unique designs inspired by the exhibition.

Collaborative Mural-Making with Norf Art Collective in the Rechter Room, 6:00–8:30 p.m. Norf Art Collective specializes in socially engaging public art that speaks to issues affecting members of the North Nashville community while celebrating its unique culture and history. Their projects are considered collaborations with the community, and their mission has led to partnerships with Jefferson Street United Merchants Partnership (JUMP), United Healthcare, Urban Housing Solutions, the Metropolitan Transit Authority, the McGruder Center, Slim and Husky’s, Tennessee State University, and more. Norf has two murals featured in the exhibition Murals of North Nashville Now. Join the artists to participate in a collaborative mural-making activity.

Mini-Tours of Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists, Murals of North Nashville Now and OSGEMEOS: In between throughout the evening, as Frist docents will lead brief tours through current exhibitions.

In the lobby: Barista Parlor will offer complimentary tastings of a Brazil-sourced coffee from the Cerrado region; Slim & Husky’s will offer a complimentary cinnamon roll tasting bar; Southern Grist Brewing will offer complimentary tastings of an exhibition-inspired beer.

In the courtyard: Food trucks: Slim & Husky’s Pizza, Roscoe’s Smoked Bar-B-Que, and the Peach Cobbler Factory will serve food and beverages, 6:00–8:30 p.m.