River Gallery Sculpture Garden

Recognized Excellence

High atop a bluff overlooking the Tennessee River you will find River Gallery Sculpture Garden located in the beautiful Bluff View Art District and situated along the coveted Chattanooga Riverwalk. River Gallery Sculpture Garden first opened in May of 1993. The two-acre outdoor space was designed by German Landscape Architect Joe Baasch and boasts a permanent collection that represents 20th and 21st century sculptures. In addition to the permanent collection, an annual exhibit of rotating featured artists is also on display. The garden features a formal garden, a meditation area, and an informal garden with recycling mountain stream.


Gates of Seven Bridges

At the garden’s entrance, a walk through the Gates of Seven Bridges by Jim Collins opens to wonderous views of art and the river. This piece represents the seven bridges found within the Chattanooga area. The mosaic tiles on the posts at the entrance of the garden were designed with the river in mind. A local artist worked with children in the Chattanooga Public School system to draw pictures of fish and in turn, channeled those creations into colorful mosaic tiles.


The River Fence

Wandering the path through the garden leads to many notable sculptures within the permanent collection. The River Fence by Jim Collins is a stainless-steel interactive piece that outlined the horizon upriver from the sculpture garden. Viewers today can line up the flagpoles on Veteran’s Bridge and see the changes along the Tennessee River’s horizon. A fountain in the center of the garden features tiles of underwater animals for children to enjoy and Jim Collins proclaimed his Source of Fish bronze sculpture represents where the fish in the Tennessee River begin.


Meditation Area

Just past the fountain is a meditation area- allowing visitors a place of peace to sit and rest. Entrance to this area is arbored by Clay Trellis designed by Mary Lynn Portera. The limestone found within the garden’s mediation area is originally from a farm in Chickamauga owned by the Portera Family- owners and operators of Bluff View Art District. Within the mediation area is Leonard Baskin’s prominent bronze piece, Prodigal Son.

River Gallery Sculpture Garden is one of the 195 sculpture gardens selected worldwide as a listing in the International Sculpture Center’s Sculpture Parks and Gardens Directory. The garden is further recognized with a listing in the Smithsonian Institution’s Archives of American Gardens.



listed in the international sculpture parks & gardens directory

In 2023, River Gallery Sculpture Garden celebrated 30 years of serving the Chattanooga community. Currently, the garden’s exhibit features work from Mark Chatterley and Russell Whiting, both long-standing artists with River Gallery

River Gallery Sculpture Garden is free and open to the public daily from dawn to dusk. For further information about the River Gallery Sculpture Garden, go to https://bluffviewartdistrict.com.


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