We had the good fortune of connecting with Kennedy Haney and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kennedy, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I do not want to live a conventional life, so I decided to make art my lifestyle. Creating is how I make sense of the world and it helps me to find peace in the incomprehensible. I believe that it is more important to find joy in a career than to dedicate time to tasks that only serve to make you money. Life is too short to be unhappy; I understand that money is important but you can either choose to make a lot of money to buy all the things you want or be content with having less material stuff and make the amount of money that you need. Another reason that I choose to pursue an artistic career is because I think that I have an interesting interpretation of life that I portray in my artwork that might help others to find value in things that usually go unnoticed.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a part time artist with a part time side hustle. My work serves to bring attention to the casually discarded objects found in the environment. By valuing the relationships between humans and nature, the work represents how one shapes another. I juxtapose materials to convey an implied message; oil paint is often combined with mixed media collage, sculpture, and ceramics to test the boundaries of materials by placing them in a new context. The work seduces the viewer to look at the stuff with a fresh perspective and allows them to revel in the debris. I am still in the very early stages in my art career, graduating with a BFA in Studio art from the University of Memphis in May 2021. My biggest accomplishments were being selected for the 37th and 38th Annual Student Juried Exhibitions at the Art Museum at the University of Memphis. Finding my voice in art was my greatest obstacle during college but I realized that it takes time learning and practicing different art practices before discovering your own style. My patience has paid off, it was just in the last year that I’ve started making sales of my art.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live and work in Memphis, TN. My favorite spots to hangout and work on things are Crosstown Concourse and Otherlands coffee shop. Some of my favorite restaurants/bars include Longshots, Pontotoc, Silly Goose, and Salt & Soy
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
The art department at the University of Memphis
Photos by Jonathan Cooper