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Oxford to Host Reception and Exhibit for Primitive Artist Joe Wrenn

Two arts councils and several Oxford couples will host a reception and exhibit for Charleston-native and self-taught artist, Joe Wrenn.

Joe Wrenn and his wife hold one of his many paintings.
Joe Wrenn and his wife hold one of his many paintings.

The event will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25, at the Powerhouse on South 14th Street, with a special invitation to fans in town early for the revival of the University of Memphis versus Ole Miss football game Sept. 27. The reception and show is being sponsored by the Charleston Arts and Revitalization Effort (CARE), Yoknapatawpha Arts Council (YAC), Ken Wooten and Margaret Wylde, Ed and Becky Meek, Missy and Will Hopkins and HottyToddy.com.
Joe Wrenn Tractor“We will have adult beverages, tasty snacks and some great blues,” said Wayne Andrews, executive director of YAC. “It’s free and everyone is invited.”
Joe Wrenn is from Charleston and was “discovered” by CARE a year ago.
“His home on Tatum Pond Road was “covered inside and out with wonderful paintings dating back to the 1960’s”, said Glenna Callender, Executive Director of CARE. “Joe has now sold many paintings and has had shows in Charleston, Hernando and Tunica. We are so excited to introduce him to the Oxford community and Rebel family.”
Mac Venable
Mac Venable

The event will include music by renowned blues musician Bill Abel of Duncan and Belzoni and Mac Venable of Charleston.
“Bill will be featured on Thacker Mountain Radio from 6 to 7 p.m. that night after which he will play at the Powerhouse. We hope Thacker Mountain Radio’s loyal fans will move from the show at Off Square Books to the Power House and join a larger crowd of locals and out of town fans kicking off a great football weekend,” said Dr. Margaret Wilde.
A number of Oxford residents have purchased Joe Wrenn’s paintings which are currently on display at City Grocery, Frame-Up, and will be on display at The Green Door Company located at the intersection of North Lamar and Molly Barr Road.
Ed Meek, who published three art books with Oxford’s Theora Hamblett, said he recalls when Miss Hamblett sold paintings for $50 at student art show at Ole Miss.
“Her paintings today can sell for over $60,000 and are held in private and public collections around the world. Joe Wrenn taught himself to paint 50 years ago, and like Miss Hamblett, was undiscovered for years. He has a warm and wonderful talent expressed in paintings of farm and delta scenes, many from memories of his life. His work is enjoyable and very affordable,” Meek said.
Here are links to other stories about Joe Wrenn:
First Solo Art Show for Joe Wrenn is Huge Success
Charleston Arts Center Features Primitive Painter Joe Wrenn
Charleston’s Joe Wrenn is Growing In Art World

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