Visit Music City


From Nashville to Paris and back

The Arts Company on 5th Avenue of the Arts opens the fall season by revisiting Classic Ed Clark Photography: from Nashville to Paris and Back. Clark, legendary LIFE magazine photographer and Nashville native, took iconic photographs of an ordinary day at The Ryman with the Grand Ole Opry audiences and performers on July 20, 1946, as well as key locations just a year earlier in Paris, France. The remaining prints in these respective series present a rare opportunity to view the photographs as well as to have the opportunity to purchase selected remaining signed prints. The retrospective exhibition begins September 1, during First Saturday Art Crawl, 6PM-9PM, continuing through September 28 during regular gallery hours, 11AM-5:00PM, Tuesday-Saturday. Additionally, The Power of Reflection, paintings by Harry Underwood, will continue Upstairs at The Arts Company through September 18. Underwood, a nationally recognized Nashville-based artist, is known for his paintings that incorporate images with words that together create distinctive narratives about the images. More information is available online at or by calling the gallery at 615-254-2040. 

About The Exhibit / Classic Ed Clark Photography

The Arts Company owner Anne Brown worked with Ed Clark after his return to Nashville in the late 1980s after his retirement. Since 1996, his classic photographs that documented prime events in history from the 1930s to the 1960s have been featured at The Arts Company. The gallery has re-organized the remaining signed prints from Mr. Clark’s personal collection and has arranged a showcase of the breadth of his work—from the 1930s in Tennessee—including Shaped Note Singers in Rutherford County; to FDR’s funeral; to his subsequent work with presidents Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Nixon; as well as his work in Hollywood after World War II with celebrities including Marilyn Monroe, Bogart and Bacall, Elizabeth Taylor, and more.

A particular featured collection in this exhibit in a collection of his signature series of Paris just after the end of the war that took the cover of LIFE in April 1946 as well as the series he took of the Opry at the Ryman in July 1946. Requested by EuroDisney/Paris in 1994 as part of a Nashville Festival in Paris, developed with The Arts Company and Nashville musicians, this collection showcases the streets of Paris and Nashville just after World War II. 

Mr. Clark’s photographs are reminders of the influence of LIFE Magazine photographers on the history of photography. A few of the classic photographs from other LIFE photographers such as Alfred Eisenstaedt, John Loengard, and Martha Holmes will be added to the exhibit. The Arts Company is one of the few galleries in the country licensed to sell photographs from The LIFE Collection of Photography. 

About the Artist / Ed Clark

Ed Clark's career as a renowned professional photographer spanned a period of 60 years, during which time he became an internationally known photojournalist. Born in Nashville in 1912, Mr. Clark dropped out of high school to join the Nashville Tennessean as a staff photographer. He had never used a professional camera before, but he was “willing and cheap." As time passed, he became the crack photographer for The Tennessean, and his pictures were being widely bought by newspapers and magazines in the U.S., the UK, Denmark and Holland. In 1936 he became a stringer for LIFE magazine, and in 1944 he joined its staff. It was the picture of Sergeant Alvin York, World War I hero, enlisting for service that caught the eye of LIFE editors. They ran the photograph for two pages, invited him to Washington, gave him a few assignments, and offered him a job. Clark initially turned it down as he did not want to leave Nashville, but he began freelancing regularly for LIFE. Eighteen months later he joined LIFE's photographic staff, where he worked for 22 years. During that time, his assignments took him to Beverly Hills, Paris, Moscow, London and Washington D.C. Mr. Clark returned to Nashville in the late 1980s, and he died in 2000.


First Saturday Art Crawl, presented by 5th Avenue of the Arts, is a monthly visual arts event occurring in the historic entertainment district of downtown Nashville. On the first Saturday of every month, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., an alliance of art galleries and museums collectively invite the public to explore the vibrant Nashville downtown art scene. More than 20 art venues participate. Presenting local and world-renowned artists and artwork, gallery participants offer rare opportunities to meet and have conversations with the artists and to view diverse exhibitions featuring every genre of art. Admission free, First Saturday Art Crawl is a festive atmosphere with participating venues from 5th Avenue of the Arts to the historic Arcade to 8th Avenue to Broadway – all welcoming the community to experience Downtown Nashville as a hub for art. First Saturday Art Crawl welcomes approximately 1,000+ attendees each month.


Established in December 1996, The Arts Company has become an arts cornerstone on 5th Avenue of the Arts in Downtown Nashville. Known as a prime destination for fresh, original, and contemporary artwork in photography, painting, and sculpture, by artists from emerging to legendary, The Arts Company offers a distinctive Nashville experience in a welcoming environment of over 6,000 square feet in a historic building. The gallery website, is available 24/7 for reviewing and previewing artist portfolios, gallery exhibitions and other projects sponsored throughout the year by the gallery. The Arts Company also maintains a series of partnerships with commercial and non-profit businesses and presents 12 inventive exhibitions a year beginning with First Saturday Art Crawl downtown every month. Information is available on the website, as well as regular entries on Facebook, Twitter, and the gallery Blog. Regular gallery hours are: 11:00am-5:00pm, Tuesday-Saturday.