See a little art, take a little art at the Little Free Art Museum in Oak Ridge

Living East Tennessee

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. (WATE) – The little free free art museum in Oak Ridge encourages people to take art home. The diorama has small visitors, and the museum is making a call to area artists for submissions to display to passers-by.

Nancy Starr created the museum in April at the end of her driveway on Cascade Lane in Oak Ridge. She said that the museum is her adaptation of a similar little art museum in Seattle, which was inspired by little free libraries that dot neighborhoods across the country.

“Light bulbs flashed in my mind,” Starr said, recalling when she heard about the little art museum. “I just loved it. I had this perfect spot where people were walking by.”

She’s used to people stopping by to admire the impressive garden she keeps, where the poppies flash dots of red flowers and spring is burgeoning with more life to come. To open the museum against that backdrop, Starr learned to use her husband’s table saw and built the museum from wood and plexiglass. The self-proclaimed “art museum geek” has only been creating art herself in recent years. She offers mandalas for museum visitors to take home.

“It’s creative, it’s exciting to think about what could make an exhibit,” she said. Past exhibits have included wildflower photography, and prints of teddy bears, among others.  The current exhibit includes a helpful reminder that Mother’s Day is Sunday.

“What I write on the backs of my paintings is ‘Share your gifts’,” she said. “That’s the whole point … it’s good for me, it’s good for everybody.”

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