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July 24, 2024

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Orchids in the Mansion to Return at Cheekwood

Historic mansion to feature 5th annual orchids display and new art exhibitions this winter.

All year-round, Cheekwood Estate & Gardens presents a variety of exhibitions, festivals and public programming.Β During winter months, guests can escape the chilly Nashville temperatures by visiting Orchids in the Mansion, immersing themselves in an abundance of tropical orchid arrangements. The floral displays will be presented in conjunction with several noteworthy art exhibitions, music performances and adult education workshops and tours to kick off 2023 at Cheekwood.Β Β 

Orchids in the Mansion 2023Β 

The winter celebration, on display from January 28 through March 5, will truly take over the historic home in its fifth year. White and purple Phalaenopsis prevail throughout the displays and emerge from rich layers of tropical foliage. Orchids will sweep up the grand staircase in the foyer and lead visitors to the central experience on the Loggia, where the florals rise off the floor and suspend from the ceiling in an immersive cloud of blooming orchids. Dendrobiums, Oncidiums and Cymbidiums add a diversity of form and texture to the arrangements that activate almost every space on the historically decorated first floor. Β 

Β β€œWe are most excited to celebrate some of the architectural features in the mansion by directly engaging the stairs in the foyer with orchid displays,” says Vice President of Gardens & Facilities Peter Grimaldi. β€œWe explore art interventions through museum exhibitions and the orchid show is truly a botanical intervention in the historic home.” 

Orchids-themed Adult Education Classes & ToursΒ 

From an in-depth analysis of the care and preservation of orchids to an instructed painting session focusing on the delicate details of the exotic flower, visitors can take part in several different learning experiences centered around orchids at Cheekwood throughout February 2023.

Orchids in the Mansion Tours | February 5, 19Β 

Join Cheekwood Garden Supervisor Shannon Pruitt on a guided tour through this year’s Orchids in the Mansion display and learn about how the exhibit came to life: from designing the display to putting it together, and the types of orchids chosen to create this year’s β€œOrchid Takeover.”  

Orchids 101 | February 11Β 

Learn about six common types of orchids and the cultural requirements for growing healthy, blooming orchids in the home. Instruction will focus on selecting the right orchid for the right place and cover basic care and maintenance for new and inexperienced orchid growers.Β 

Painted Still Life: Orchids | February 11Β 

Participants will examine the delicate curves of orchids, from stem to blooms and buds, and create their own still-life composition.Β Β 

Orchid Repotting Workshop | February 25Β 

Take the next step in orchid care and learn to properly re-pot your plants. Learn about the most common components of potting media and follow a step-by-step process for repotting orchids in this hands-on workshop. Participants will be provided with one Phalaenopsis to re-pot themselves during the class and take home to measure their success.Β 

Needle-Felted Phalaenopsis | February 25Β 

Join local textile artist Jennifer Fleischer for an afternoon of needle-felting to create your own everlasting orchid! Participants will learn the basics of needle felting, and use the components created to make their own felted phalaenopsis.Β Β 

Piano PerformancesΒ 

Each Saturday during Orchids in the Mansion, piano performances by Kaylina Madison Crawley and Chris Walters will take place in the Drawing Room from noon to 2 p.m., bringing the historic period room to life.

Crawley currently serves as the Community Academy of Music and Arts director at Tennessee State University where she also teaches Music Appreciation, Proficiency Piano, and Applied Piano courses. When not performing with his own band Chris Walters is the keyboardist for various artists including JD Souther and The Peter Mayer Group. He has also performed with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra.Β 

Art in the MansionΒ 

Orchids aren’t the only thing going on in the Cheekwood Mansion this winter. Two art exhibitions will open in the galleries on January 28:

Spanning the Atlantic: The Arts & Crafts Movement in AmericaΒ 

This second half of a two-part exhibition examining the international Arts & Crafts movement, which first developed in the British Isles during the 19th century before making its way across the Atlantic to America, opens January 28 and runs through April 2, 2023. This highly anticipated exhibition will explore how the British approach to aesthetic ideas and philosophical ideals was adapted by American artisans and disseminated across the continent through publications, journals, magazines, and lectures. Featuring more than 100 objects of fine art, furniture, decorative arts and textiles, with leading examples from the collection of Crab Tree Farm, the exhibition highlights some of the most talented American craftsmen and women of the early 20th century, including Gustave Stickley, Rookwood Pottery, Marie Zimmerman, Adelia Robineau, Grueby Faience Company and Newcomb Pottery.Β 

The Agrarian Spirit: Cultivating Ruralism and Regionalism in American ArtΒ 

Beginning with the advent of farming during the Neolithic Era, humans have long cultivated an intimate relationship with the land through agricultural practice. In early 20th-century America, Regionalist art celebrated this relationship with emotion-laden landscape scenes while advocating for ruralism (country living and values) over urbanism and city living. Prints by Thomas Hart Benton, Grant Wood and John Steuart Curry – the Regionalist Triumvirate – are featured among 20 works on paper that examine the compositions and contexts of agrarian imagery produced in America between 1920 and 1950. The exhibition is on display in the Graphic Arts Gallery from January 28 through May 14, 2023.Β 

For more information on Orchids in the Mansion at Cheekwood, go to cheekwood.org.Β 

 

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About the Author

Michael Aldrich

Michael Aldrich is Nashville Parent's Managing Editor and a Middle Tennessee arts writer. He and his wife, Alison, are the proud parents of 4-year-old Ezra and baby Norah.