CDM Opens Second Floor Exhibit, ArtSpace

CDM Opens Second Floor Exhibit, ArtSpace

Published On:
Mackenzie Steele

ArtSpace is officially open! This exhibit is the newest completed phase of the Ignite Discovery capital campaign renovations. The official opening on August 27 was highly anticipated and well received by Creative Discovery Museum (CDM) members, visitors, donors, and members of the arts community in Chattanooga.

Adult and child working on a project in new Art Studio.
Child painting in new Art Studio.

In this new exhibit, visitors can experience visual and performing arts through hands-on activities and interactive elements spanning a variety of techniques and forms:

  • Guatemala: Family Traditions teaches visitors about Dia de Todos los Santos (All Saints’ Day), kite making, and the important role food plays in cultural traditions.
  • The indoor/outdoor art studio allows guests to create art projects in various mediums with staff assistance and supervision. Projects change regularly, so there is always something new to try!
  • In Appalachian Arts, enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of a traditional ramp festival. Learn the art of fly tying and marble playing. Experience bluegrass and folk music with our very own Chattanooga legend, Fletcher Bright. Or test your skill with turkey calls.
  • The ever-popular music room has been re-created on the second floor with drums, piano, guitar, and microphone to create a true in-studio feel. Just outside of the music studio is an art installation from Songbirds, created by DOOWELL Design and Consulting, dedicated to the “Big 9.”
  • The Textile and Weaving room features basket weaving techniques, quilting patterns and designs, and more with a video feature from Master Teaching Artist, Sue Williams.
  • Local dance studio D. Williams Dance Academy choreographed dances for visitors to learn in our new dance studio.
  • And to top it all off, there are three flying puppet pigs with moving legs, wings, and eyes named Orville, Henrietta, and Matilda created by TJ Hanretta.

"With the opening of the new ArtSpace exhibit, Creative Discovery Museum continues to introduce the arts to children from a young age," said Anne B. Pope, Executive Director of the Tennessee Arts Commission. "This exhibit continues to grow and support the Tennessee arts community both locally in Chattanooga and regionally through interactive, hands-on experiences."

Adult and child piecing together Alex Paul Loza's art installation.
Adult and child playing with Carrie Pendergrass' mixed media installation.

Many local artists have contributed art installations or reproductions that are featured throughout ArtSpace. Artists include:

Area students will also have featured artwork in select places throughout the exhibit.

“We are delighted to present an exhibit that provides many opportunities for children to express their creativity through different art forms,” said Henry Schulson, President and CEO of CDM. “When we opened over 27 years ago, we had few connections to the local art community. This exhibit celebrates the close relationship we have with local artists and highlights their talents in all its diversity.”

In addition to the opening of ArtSpace, other popular exhibits have reopened on the second floor, including Buzz Alley and the Tower. Make It has also moved from the first floor into its home in the new STEM Zone exhibit on the second floor. The remaining galleries in STEM Zone and the outdoor rooftop area, TreeHouse Adventure, are still under renovation and expected to be open by November.

ArtSpace is supported by funding from ArtsBuild and Tennessee Arts Commission (TAC),as well as the Bright Family, Caldwell and Cake Families, Chuck Chitty, and the Bobby Stone Foundation. CDM is an ArtsBuild Community Arts Partner. Funding from TAC was supported, in whole or in part, by federal award number SLFRP5534awarded to the State of Tennessee by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

To learn more about the Ignite Discovery capital campaign and the comprehensive renovations taking place at CDM, visit

About Creative Discovery Museum
Creative Discovery Museum (CDM) is a non-profit, hands-on, children’s museum providing educational programs and exhibits in the arts and sciences. The Museum services nearly 300,000 individuals annually through museum visits, educational programs, free and reduced-price admission and much more. CDM is a prime tourist attraction and ranks among the best children’s museums in the country. The Museum’s vision is to make our community the best place for a child to grow up.

Visit us every day except Wednesday from 10a.m.-5 p.m. at 321 Chestnut Street, Chattanooga, TN 37402.To learn more, visit and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.