Marty Stuart's American Odyssey On Display Until June 30

This appeared on - January 2, 2009

When country music icon Marty Stuart steps off stage, he puts down his guitar and picks up his camera. Now, after four decades of writing, performing and photographing, Stuart is displaying his photographic chronicle of personal inspiration at one of Tennessee and Music City's busiest venues: Nashville International Airport (BNA).

"We are delighted to have an exhibit of this caliber on display at Nashville International," said Raul Regalado, president and CEO of the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA). "Working with Marty Stuart and the Tennessee State Museum has been a fruitful collaboration since we all share an appreciation for the visual and performing arts."

This is the first collaboration between the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority's Arts at the Airport program and the Tennessee State Museum, making Marty Stuart's American Odyssey exhibit a true testament to both institutions' commitment to showcasing outstanding art in public spaces.

"Marty Stuart is one of the nation's true original treasures; he is a singer, songwriter, master musician, producer, documentary photographer, collector, writer, philosopher, and all-around poet," said Lois Riggins-Ezzell, executive director of the Tennessee State Museum. "He has also become an extraordinary curator and archivist of American culture. One hundred years from now, the people that come after us will know the real story of our American heritage because Marty was visionary enough to make this musical 'odyssey' his life's work."

A regarded veteran of the country music scene, few recognize Stuart as anything other than a songwriter and musician. Yet, the Mississippi native has been taking pictures nearly as long as he's played guitar. He got his first camera at age 13 while making his bluegrass debut as a rhythm guitarist in Lester Flatt's band.

Three of Stuart's most influential groups are represented in the American Odyssey collection: country music singers and songwriters, rockabilly writers and performers, and the Lakota Tribe of North Dakota. The American Odyssey exhibit is part of Stuart's larger showcase of music memorabilia and photography, Sparkle & Twang, which was on display last year at the Tennessee State Museum in downtown Nashville.

Marty Stuart's American Odyssey will be on display at BNA until June 30, 2009.

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