Artist in Residence

Discovery Center has launched an artist in residence program that focuses on sustainable practices in Middle Tennessee. This project provides an opportunity for children and families who visit the Center to observe and interact with a professional artist and culminates in an artist creating an installation that is produced with materials like wood, recycled materials, or any other responsibly sourced materials of the artist’s choice. The installation will be on exhibit at the Discovery Center and will encourage visitors to have a better appreciation of natural areas like the wetlands.

The artist will lead a craft program that includes a small take-away craft every Tuesday (except March 26) at 3:30 p.m., for a limited time.

In addition, artists in residence will work on their piece and have open studio time each week where guests can observe their artistic process. (Times TBA; open studio time will not occur the week of March 25). The work of art will be put on display at our Arts in April free day on Saturday, April 27, 2019.

Funded in part by:


Current artist in residence: Abby Hirsch Reish

Abby Hirsch Reish was born in Athens, Ga., but spent the majority of her childhood in Marietta, Ga., which is best known for a big chicken (which may have made an appearance in her art). Some of her earliest artistic influences and experiences came from homemade play-dough scented with coconut extract, The World of Syd and Marty Kroftt at the Omni, book author/illustrators Maurice Sendak and Crockett Johnson, and Saturday morning cartoons.

Abby returned to Athens to attend the University of Georgia where she earned her BFA in Ceramics and Art Education and her MFA in Ceramics. During this time she married Greg, her summer camp sweetheart-turned professor. Greg’s academic appointments allowed Abby to teach art and exhibit and sell her work in galleries and shops in Hilo and Waimea, Hawaii; Athens, Ga.; Rome, Italy; Buffalo, N.Y.; Jerusalem, Israel; and most recently Murfreesboro, Tenn. She has also done many privately commissioned paintings.

Abby’s most current works are brightly colored, whimsical acrylic paintings that capture humor and love in two-dimensional form. Her work can be viewed at: