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We have traveled across the US to interview historians, art historians, journalists, museum directors, practicing artists and other experts. Each shares their unique insights into William Edmondson's life, times, and art. We have a few more interviews to shoot. Please consider a donation to help us complete the film.

John Seigenthaler

A Nashville native, John Seigenthaler served for 43 years as an award-winning journalist, editor, publisher and CEO, for The Tennessean newspaper and USA Today. He served as an advisor to Robert Kennedy. The late Mr. Seigenthaler was a keen observer and reporter of Nashville history, particularly the long struggle for civil rights.

David C. Driskell

Artist and scholar.  Professor Driskell is one of the world’s leading authorities on African American art. Taught at Fisk and Howard Universities and University of Maryland. Author of the groundbreaking “Two Centuries of African American Art” in 1976, which revolutionized the study of African American art.

Jennifer Marshall, Ph.D.

Author and art historian. Associate Professor of North American Art, Department of Art History at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Marshall specializes in the art and visual/material culture of the United States. She is currently researching a book on William Edmondson.

Bobby Lovett, Ph.D.

Dr. Lovett is a prominent historian and author of several books on African American history. He has written extensively about Edmondson. Former chair of History Department at Tennessee State University

Lois Riggins-Ezell

Director of the Tennessee State Museum, which holds a large collection of Edmondson’s work. She helped mount the first major William Edmondson retrospective exhibition in 1981.

Cynthia Gadsden

Associate professor of art history at Tennessee State University.

Judith McWillie

Art historian and practicing artist. Expert in Southern self-taught artists.

Lonnie Holley

Nationally-known sculptor, painter, and musician.

Alan LeQuire

Nashville-based nationally-known figurative sculptor, who cites Edmondson as a primary influence. His mother, a journalist and art teacher, studied, collected, and wrote extensively about Edmondson.

James L. Hoobler

Historian, author and curator at the Tennessee State Museum. An expert in Nashville history.

First-person accounts

William Edmondson died in 1951, so there are a very few people who still remember him. Here are some of the remarkable people we have found and interviewed.

Robert Denton

As a child, he met William Edmondson when his parents traveled to Nashville from New Jersey, specifically to purchase several pieces directly from the artist.

Duiel Overton

Mr. Overton, a Nashville-area native, was a college student at Tennessee A & I University in the 1940’s. He lived in the the same segregated Edgehill neighborhood as Edmondson, and was acquainted with him.

Cecile Starr Boyajian

Niece of Alfred Starr, Edmondson’s most important patron. She met Edmondson in 1937, when she was a teen, and shares her vivid impressions of him.


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