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University Art Collections

The Austin Peay State University Art Collection contains approximately 3000 pieces of very diverse art objects: paintings, photographs, prints, sculptures, drawings, and historical objects. Works in the Collection are from various sources such as gifts made by individuals and families in the community, donations from visiting artists, purchases made recognizing student artists and notable regional artists, and purchase awards from various exhibitions.

The University Art also has several smaller collections representing how the art pieces joined the art collection. Most notably: the Mabel Larson Drawing Collection, which includes the drawings purchased from the Border to Border Biennial Drawing Exhibition and form an exquisite contemporary drawing collection in the region; The Robertson Collection, a collection of over 300 original photographs, donated by Jim and Nan Robertson, with pieces of historical value as well as examples of some of the finest art photographers in the world; The Folk Art Collection is an exceptional blend of folk and outsider art with the majority of pieces donated by Ned and Jacqueline Crouch and the Trahern family.

Highlights from the art collection include the work of William Edmondson, E.T. Wickham, Romare Bearden, Fransisco Goya, Bill Brandt, André Kertesz, Joseph Legros, the Kolb Brothers, Karl Struss, William Eggleston, Edward Weston, and John Francis Strauss.

William Edmondson Sculptures

Mabel Larson Gallery is the home to three very unique pieces by William Edmondson, donated by Dr. Joseph Trahern Jr. Edmondson. Edmondson was a self taught folk artist from Tennessee who lived from 1847-1951. He gained prominence late in his career for his raw, primitive style, although he remained modest throughout his career, attributing his drive to complete art and his talent to God. Most prominent among his many honors is his solo show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the first show featuring the work of an African American artist. These three pieces are on permanent display in the Art + Design Building.  MoMA Edmondson Press Release 1937

Ned and Jacqueline Crouch Collection

This large folk art collection donated in Fall of 2012 by Ned and Jacqueline Crouch includes many media, from sculptures and woodwork to paintings and drawings, this collection features works from such artists as Herbert Baggot, E.T. Wickham, and Miles Smith. 

Robertson Collection

The Robertson Collection is a collection of over 300 magnificent photographs donated to the University by Jim and Nan Robertson. Nan Robertson was herself a talented art student who studied in Arizona in the 1970s and ‘80s. Jim owned the Fifth Avenue Gallery of Photography in Scottsdale, Ariz., which brought him into contact with such distinguished artists as Bill Brandt, Bruce Barnbaum, Ansel Adams, Ruth Bernhard and André Kertesz . Since moving to Dover, Tenn., the couple has been adamant about sharing their passion with the University. The donation gave the University one of the most impressive photography collections in the region. Some of the pieces are currently on display in the second floor of the Art + Design building.

Mini-Collection Galleries

As a collection of a public institution, it is our goal to make the work as accessible to the public as possible. To achieve that goal, we have installed several 'mini-galleries' throughout campus. You can find several pieces from the collection in the following buildings: McReynolds (2nd floor), Art+Design (both floors), Morgan University Center (bottom floor), Browning (all floors), University Design and Construction (255 Marion St.). Furture sites for additional 'mini-galleries' include the buildings: Marks, Claxton, Sundquist.

Appraisals and Authentications

The Department of Art+Design/The New Gallery does not provide appraisals or authentications. Contact the Appraisers Association of America for guidelines and state searches at www.appraisersassoc.org, or find general information and web links for appraisals on the web site of the Archives of American Art (http://www.aaa.si.edu/) at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.