<..." /> Tennessee & Art Story: Nona Faustine' "A Moment in The Mountains" - The Hype Magazine

Happenings A Moment in the Mountains

Published on August 16th, 2023 | by Dr. Jerry Doby


Tennessee & Art Story: Nona Faustine’ “A Moment in The Mountains”

A Moment in the Mountains

A Moment in the Mountains: Three-Day Creative Gathering Will Discuss Identity, Process, Femininity, Craft, and Race With a Host of Activities From September 22 to 24, 2023

A Moment in the Mountains,’ an immersive creative experience will be guided by visual artist and photographer Nona Faustine from September 22 – 24, 2023, in the beloved Appalachian town of Gatlinburg, Tenn. Nona’s work focuses on history, identity, representation, evoking a critical and emotional understanding of the past, and proposes a deeper examination of contemporary racial and gender stereotypes. During the three-day retreat, attendees will celebrate local artists and build relationships within this creative community. It is sponsored by Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, which has been educating and preserving culture since 1912, along with local hospitality leaders Mahavir & Dev Patel of Aatmos. Together, they are leading the way on the Appalachian Renaissance, ‘A Moment in the Mountains’ will focus on enhancing and reclaiming the BIPOC community’s relationship with the great outdoors. 

Nona Faustine - Portrait by Grace Roselli

Nona Faustine – Portrait by Grace Roselli

Nona Faustine will be joined by acclaimed photographers Renee Cox and Justine Kurland, and poet Pamela Sneed, to tell their stories, recount their experiences and show their work with the aim of sparking conversations and connections. Together, guests and artists will share moments as they build an empowered experience exploring and reconnecting with the diverse Smoky Mountain landscape and deep woods of Appalachia. 

Renee Cox

Renee Cox

Justine Kurland - Dawn Kim 2022

Justine Kurland – Dawn Kim 2022

Pamela Sneed

Pamela Sneed

As concept creators for ‘A Moment in the Mountains,’ Brian Gorman, managing partner at visionary company Army Of Moon People, and Ms. Faustine worked with Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts and Aatmos, to construct a program of events that will make the weekend an unforgettable experience. It will include eight in-person classes hosted by Arrowmont, presentations of work, panel discussions, intimate roundtable performances, conversations, a podcast, trips within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for poetry readings, shared meals, and opportunities to visit local artists’ studios. 

The project has garnered additional enthusiastic interest from the Multicultural Student Life & Frieson Black Cultural Center student groups at the University of Tennessee Knoxville, as well as garnered indirect recognition from The National Park Service, through its pioneering program The African American Experience in the Smokies. 

Trudy Hughes

Trudy Hughes, CEO of Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts

“Gatlinburg and Arrowmont have a long-standing tradition and history as a community that welcomes and promotes artists from all walks of life,” said Trudy Hughes, Arrowmont’s CEO. “We are honored to host ‘A Moment in the Mountains’ and add to the narrative that Gatlinburg is an inclusive hub of art-loving people and a community that welcomes all who seek expression through nature and creativity.” 

Mahavir Patel, CEO AATMOS - (Sevierville)

Mahavir Patel, President and CEO of Aatmos

Mahavir Patel, President and CEO of Aatmos adds, “Arrowmont has created such an inclusive environment for everyone to come and connect with the Smokies and experience true Appalachian hospitality. We are glad to be a part of that with ‘A Moment in the Mountains’ and all that Nona Faustine is trying to do.” 

“I can confidently say this is the most heartfelt project of my career,” said Brian Gorman, Army of Moon People and ‘A Moment in the Mountains’ concept creator. “This is my third time working with Nona and her work – and her as a person – it has been such a source of inspiration. I am so excited for more people to get to have that experience. This is truly an important program and part of what I see as an Appalachian Renaissance.” 

Out-of-town guests will have the opportunity to experience a new level of Appalachian hospitality at the transformed Rocky Waters Motor Inn, located in Gatlinburg at the gateway of the Great Smoky Mountains. The peaceful oasis will provide guests with rejuvenating lodging where nature lovers can disconnect, slow down and appreciate the lush surroundings of the Smoky Mountains. A welcome event will take place at Heirloom Room – Rocky Waters’ upscale dining destination – Friday, September 22. During the cocktail reception, guests will retrieve their weekend passes and mingle with fellow participants and artists. 

For more information, a full schedule of weekend events and to purchase tickets, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nona-faustines-a-moment-in-the-mountains-tickets-643039046097.

Photo Gallery Courtesy of Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts


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About the Author

Journalist, Editor-in-Chief of The Hype Magazine, and Media Consultant. Ph.D. and retired military. Member of ForbesBLK, the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture, and the United States Press Agency. Partner at THM Media Group. Connect with Jerry across social media @jerrydoby_

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