Newcomers to Franklin Art Scene bring long-held passions for creativity to June’s event

Newcomers to Franklin Art Scene bring long-held passions for creativity to June’s event


 A couple of recently opened businesses on Main Street in downtown Franklin will be hosting artists making their debut in the Franklin Art Scene scheduled for 6-9 p.m. Friday.

Sage Sleep, which opened in February at 434 Main St., will display the works of Franklin artist Sarah Parsons, who specializes in vibrant abstract and landscape oil paintings. Post Boutique, which opened in the 231 Public Square building in March, will feature Nashville artist Tess Erlenborn, who takes inspiration from escapism and natural and biological textures and forms.

Sarah Parsons

“I’m looking forward to it,” said Parsons, who has lived in Franklin with her husband and young daughter for 5½ years. “I met the owners of Sage Sleep, and they are just the kindest people ever. They’re new to the area and were looking for artists. I was more than happy to partner with them.”

Parsons caught the creativity bug when she was quite young, and turned that passion into a double-major in oil painting and photography at a private college in Indiana.

“After college, I pursued photography for a little while but my first love was always painting, so I started painting again,” she said. “Just on a whim, I showed some work in a coffee shop, and I ended up selling seven of the 12 paintings in the collection. That was so surprising and unexpected and that was sort of the beginning of my thinking this was something I should pursue.”

Parsons also is creative arts pastor for Grace Center in Grassland.

Like Parsons did, Erlenborn also discovered her flair for creativity as a child. She later developed her passion  as a student at Harpeth Hall in Nashville. She followed that to the University of the South at Sewanee, where she graduated cum laude under the honors program in 2014.

Tess Erlenborn

“I’ve been painting and drawing my whole life,” Erlenborn said, “but in high school I really began taking it seriously as a potential profession. I decided I wanted to pursue getting a Bachelor of Fine Arts.”

In addition to her Franklin Art Scene debut at Posh Boutique, Erlenborn has a solo exhibition of new works at OZ Arts Nashville through the end of June and is part of a group showing at 21C Museum Hotel in Nashville through September. Her work also is featured at Nashville Artists Collective.

This month’s Franklin Art Scene will be introducing The Franklin Creative Gallery & Boutique at 1261 Columbia Avenue, where four artists’ work will be on display; Samorné from South Africa, Jeremy Cowart from the purpose hotel, abstract artist Travis Jenkins and photographer Shelly Moore. The evening will also include a live concert with Phillip Larue performing material from his album, mimosas and margaritas provided by Ruby Sunshine, along with toffee bites from Franklin Toffee.

Here are the other featured artists in the June Art Scene:

  • Finnleys, located at 435 Main St., will host artist Raymond Nash whose recent media is acrylic paints on wire, wood box and barn board.
  • Franklin Creative, located at 1261 Columbia Ave., will celebrate the launch of the gallery & boutique with 4 artists, music and refreshments.
  • Franklin First United Methodist Church, located at 148 5th Ave. S., will showcase the artwork of Blu Wyann and the jewelry of Judith Ann Ward who uses semi-precious stones to create one of a kind pieces. Student artwork from the Preschool/Parents Day Out Program will also be on display.
  • Franklin Road Apparel, located at 508 W Mains St., will showcase live art & live music. Featured artist Ryan Rado believes art move us towards authenticity. Music will be provided by High Tides, who will entertain with a modern-day psychedelic, indie rock sound.
  • Gallery 202, located at 202 Second Ave. S., will feature Erin Johnson, whose current focus is contemporary painting in acrylic.
  • Hester & Cook, located at 340 A Main St., will host artist Mel Ferrer, who is experimenting with new approaches to traditional techniques.
  • Holly Thompson Homes, located at 236 2nd Ave. S., will feature abstract artist Sarah Menkel, who uses color to convey emotion onto the canvas.
  • Historic Presbyterian Church, located at 435 Main St., will feature the work of Daniel Klatt who works mostly with oils and mixed media on canvas, doing landscapes, abstracts and portraits
  • Imaginebox Emporium, located at 311 N. Margin St., will showcase the original illustrations of Cory Basil as well as his other creations using mediums such as watercolor, oil and gauche.
  • ONYX & ALABASTER, located at 134 2nd Ave. N., will host Mattie Wolf, whose artwork is best known for it’s striking use of contrast and fluid designs.
  • Twine Graphics, located at 304 Public Square, will feature artist Maria Roate, whose bright colors, spontaneity and fresh approach in her paintings and design style reflect her zest and joy for life.
  • Williamson County Archives, located at 611 W. Main St., will feature the vibrant art of Emily Little.

The Franklin Art Scene trolley is also available for free rides throughout the event. For more information on the Franklin Art Scene, a full list of artists and a map of all featured locations, visit

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