You may notice this news in this week's Crawl Space column, but it bears repeating: Channel to Channel, the beloved gallery inside Wedgewood-Houston’s The Packing Plant, is leaving town. The December show will be Channel to Channel’s last — in Nashville, at least.
“We have been [in The Packing Plant] for five years,” gallery owner Dustin Hedrick tells the Scene, “and we needed a little more independence — and a larger space. We just couldn’t find that space in Nashville.”
Hedrick and his gallery will relocate to Chattanooga.
“The Packing Plant is a great incubator for galleries, but I think we’re past that stage as a gallery. It would have been a lot more expensive to stay in Nashville, and for maybe not as much benefit.”
In 2011, artist Dustin Hedrick began exhibiting art from his studio inside the May Hosiery Mill. Five years ago, the gallery moved to The Packing Plant, and quickly became its hub. Shows at Channel to Channel are often exemplary — I reviewed Eleanor Aldrich’s 2019 show Main Squeeze for Art in America, Omari Booker’s Red Line was among the best exhibits from Nashville artists in 2020, and the gallery’s artist Jonathan Edelhuber is a sometimes-collaborator with pop art star — and recent David Zwirner signee — Katherine Berndhart.
“If we’re not in one of the major art hubs, it doesn’t really matter where we are,” Hedrick says. “What matters is that it’s a great space. It’s been great to be part of the growth of the city and its art scene. But we’ve never really subsidized a gallery from sales in Nashville — most of our sales come from outside of Nashville. We sell a lot to the Pacific coast, New York and Florida. We have collectors in Nashville that we still want to engage with, but we’d like to be more nomadic. Now we can be focused on Tennessee as a whole.”
The inaugural show in Channel to Channel's Chattanooga location opens on Nov. 20, and will showcase artists from across the state.
Its departure will leave a huge hole in Nashville’s gallery scene.