TAC, Joy Snead

Joy Snead utilizes a variety of media, including acrylic paint, ink, pencil and wood. She also uses some unconventional materials, such as snake skin. Her Tullahoma Art Center exhibit, “The Art of the Story,” runs through Saturday, April 27.

Joy Snead invites locals to visit the Tullahoma Art Center, where her exhibit, dubbed “The Art of the Story,” is currently featured.


Meet the artist

Born and raised in Franklin County, Snead still lives there, but she spends most of her days in Tullahoma, where she recently opened the doors of her own business.

“My business is called The Knowledge Nook,” she said. “It has two parts to it – the Knowledge Nook side is where I help kids with homework and my art side is called the Purple Chameleon.”

The Knowledge Nook is located at 601 W. Lincoln St.

Prior to taking on the business venture, Snead was a teacher.

“I taught school for 21 years at Good Shepherd, a Catholic school in Decherd,” she said. “But the school closed down about five years ago. I have always wanted to teach art and that’s how The Knowledge Nook came to be – one door closed and another was open.”


‘The Art of the Story’

Snead enjoys sharing her art expressions through the exhibit at the Tullahoma Art Center.

“My thought on putting it all together was that it is a story – it is my story,” Snead said.

Through her pieces, Snead wants to share her emotions with viewers, while, at the same time, bringing them joy. 

“Stories are as old as time,” she said. “They’ve crossed over continents and down the generations. Stories have been a means of communicating and connecting. Ancient fables and fairytales, mysteries and tragedies all have a message to relate. The author, as well as the artist, have a way of evoking emotions and intertwining to each individual’s interpretation.”

Snead’s art pieces are expression of her understanding of the classic literature stories, she said.

“Art comes from stories that have come down generations and generations,” she said. “That’s how I view it and that’s why I called the exhibit The Art of the Story. Any of these pieces could be in a fairytale or a story, and some of the pieces are inspired by fairytales and stories. Some are inspired by Edgar Allan Poe or William Shakespeare or Brothers Grimm’s fairytales.”

One of the sections of the show is dedicated to women.

“I like drawing women,” Snead said. “They are more interesting to draw than men – they have more frills and flowers and hairdos. I like to draw their hair and clothes. In the 1940s, for example, their clothes were so cool.”

Snead’s favorite portrait depicts Marie Antoinette.

There is also a part of the show that features drawings of angels.

“Angels fascinate me,” Snead said.

Drawing animals also intrigues her.

“I have a circus theme, as well,” she said. “I love to draw animals. It goes back to the colors and fun aspects. Plus circuses are going away.”

It’s “the vintage, bygone era” that interests her.

“Then, I have barn animals,” Snead said. “Animals are interesting because you don’t know what they are thinking and feeling; you think you might know, but you don’t. They are beautiful and their facial expressions are so interesting.”


Using various, unconventional media

Though she has a favorite art material, Snead utilizes a variety of media.

“My favorite medium to use is acrylic paint,” she said. “I also like to do pencils and inks.”

She often utilizes unconventional materials.

“I sometimes use stuff that is not really considered an art medium, like recycled things, garbage and snake skins,” Snead said. “I have a pet snake and, when it sheds its skin, I use it in my art. I’ve used bugs and pieces of wood, just to give the pieces more life and dimension.”

Mixing media provides a richer experience for the viewer, she said.

“It gives you something different your eye can look at in the same picture,” Snead said.

All art pieces part of the exhibit are available for purchase.

The prices of most of them range from $15 to $30.


Visiting the center

The Art of the Story exhibit will be featured at the Tullahoma Art Center until April 27.

The art center, located at 401 S. Jackson St., is open Friday 1-5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission is free for members of the art center and $5 for non-members.

For more information, call the center at 931-455-1234 or visit tullahomaartcenter.com.

Elena Cawley may be reached via email at ecawley@tullahomanews.com.