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Charleston Artist Joe Wrenn Stars in 30-Minute Documentary

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The Mississippian artist Joe Wrenn, native of Charleston, will be a star of a documentary.

John Allison is the director of the documentary, titled ‘Joe Wrenn,’ an honor he “simply could not refuse” as a fellow Charleston resident like Joe Wrenn.

Allison said, “I am from New York but always loved everything Mississippi: the food, books, the arts and culture.”

He moved to Charleston three years ago, to the land where he spent his childhood summers as the son of Charleston native Mose Allison, jazz musician who moved to New York City in the 1950s where he raised his son John. There in Charleston he is the vice president of CARE (Charleston Arts and Revitalization Effort). He said he was thrilled when its director Glenna Callender, who wrote a charming feature on Joe Wrenn, decided to exhibit Wrenn’s artwork last summer.

“We love his work and his methodology, capturing local stories and creating his works of art free from scholarly acquired methods. His art was so pure, so Mississippi and people loved it,” said Allison.

At his first exhibition a year ago, he sold nearly two-thirds of his artwork.

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Many are awaiting this documentary. It is funded by an anonymous source in Charleston. Allison said his co-producer, Tim O’Grady jumped on a plane to Mississippi from Tucson, Arizona after a phone call on the project.

The documentary was mostly shot at Joe’s Sugar Shack, just past the city limits. This place works as both a social watering hole and an art studio for Wrenn.

Allison said, “When we arrived to shoot the film he had already had the day planned. There would be a hog killing and a feast with friends and family.”

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The documentary will also feature interviews with some of Wrenn’s supporters and admirers including Chef John Currence and HottyToddy.com publisher Ed Meek.

Dr. Meek said, “I think Joe Wrenn is an extraordinary talent who went undiscovered for 25 to 30 years. His paintings reflect his past.”

Living a ways out of Charleston in the Tallahatchie county, Wrenn is a self-taught artist who has brought common scenes and memories around Mississippi to vivid life by painting. He has painted his whole life, but recent discoveries of his work has boosted his artistic career.

Here is a teaser trailer below:

Read more about Joe Wrenn on HottyToddy.com:

Self-Taught Artist Puts Life Experiences Into Moving Paintings

Charleston Arts Center Features Primitive Painter Joe Wrenn

First Solo Art Show for Joe Wrenn is a Huge Success

Oxford to Host Reception and Exhibit for Primitive Artist Joe Wrenn

Primitive Artist Joe Wrenn Gets Down with Bill Abel

Mo’ About Joe: Charleston’s Own Joe Wrenn Answers His Calling

Callie Daniels Bryant is the senior managing editor at HottyToddy.com. She can be reached at callie.daniels@hottytoddy.com.

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