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Joy Reed Belt: A Joy for Life



 

I’ve Never Known Anyone Named “Joy” Who Didn’t Personify Her Name.

Dr. Joy Reed Belt is no exception. A conversation
with the ebullient Dr. Belt is exactly that: a joy.
The joy-joy-joy-joy-down-in-my-heart kind of joy.

The principal of Joy Reed Belt and Associates, Inc.,
an Oklahoma City-based executive search firm,
Belt is a licensed professional counselor, a voracious reader and amasser of books (paper and digital), an enthusiastic, lifelong learner and the owner and director of JRB Art
at The Elms, an award-winning gallery (and arguably the brightest jewel) in the historic Paseo Arts District crown.


Where did you grow up?

I was born in Louisville, but my father was a pastor, so we lived all over. I went to high school in Ft. Smith, Arkansas.
 

Is it true that the pastor’s kids are the wildest?

I wasn’t really “wild.” I was probably challenging, in some ways. My father used to say that my curiosity worried him.
 

Was it hard or sad to move around all the time?

No – I enjoyed it. Because of my father’s job, we would move somewhere new every few years and the church was sort of an instant community.  
 

Where did you go to college?

Ouachita (in Arkansas) for my undergraduate. I was a drama major. For my graduate degree (from the University of Arkansas), I studied guidance counseling and literature. I received a doctorate in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Oklahoma, followed by three years of post-doctorate work at the Menninger School of Psychiatry.
 

What did you think you were going to be when you went to college?

I was a singer, but I really liked drama and realized that I especially enjoyed the variety that came with the “behind the scenes” part of drama — directing, costumes and makeup. Later, I taught drama, speech, debate and English.
 

What was your first paying job?

My first paying job was working at a shoe store. I always loved the idea of working. I would also get paid for different singing jobs. I had to sing in church to earn my allowance.
 

Singing in church would have been much better than my crummy chores!

I really wanted to be a blues singer, but I could not see the path — not from where I was at the time.  
 

What are you obsessed with?

Books! They’re so important to me. I began reading from a very early age. I enjoy everything — fiction, literature, mystery, art … at any point in time, I might be reading five different books. Luckily, I have a Kindle, which I carry with me all the time.
 

What do you wish you’d started doing long before now?

I don’t know. I see life as three different acts. I’m in the third act now, but I couldn’t be here without acts one and two. What I did then has brought me to this act.
 

What should people try to do at least once?

Buy a painting or a piece of art they like, just because they like it. It’s amazing how someone will fall in love with a piece and connect with it at a very emotional or visceral level, and then they start to intellectualize it by asking, “Is this good? Is it valuable?” I always tell them, “If you like it, then it’s good!” They should learn to trust the emotional connection, and leave it at that.
 

My guess is that a lot of people experience that connection, then they leave and the painting haunts them until they come back for it.

That is exactly what happens and when they come back, the painting is usually sold to someone else!
 

How did your path lead to becoming the owner of such an incredible art gallery?

John (my late husband) bought me a few painting lessons in 1999 because he thought they’d be a way for me to relax. I ended up opening a gallery — he never saw that coming!
 

Most people remember John as a lifelong supporter and promoter of the arts with a great heart for the community. How long were you two married?

35 years.
 

What was the most important character trait John exemplified in 35 years?

Patience. He was an old soul who took the long view on things. Once he identified a goal, he moved toward it and stayed the course, long after most people would have given up. He was also the most positive person I’ve ever known. I miss his wonderful mind. I miss the friendship we shared.
 

Jonathan Hils, “Flamenco”


There are a lot of tangible reminders of John in this city. The new “Flamenco” sculpture (at NW 29th and Paseo Drive in the Paseo Arts District) is a stunning tribute to John’s contributions to that community and our city. What goes through your mind when you see that?

I feel fortunate that there are so many tangible reminders of him. Every time I turn at 30th and Paseo and I see all those colorful buildings, it’s like getting a hug.
 

Were there unfinished projects of his that you’ll see to completion?

Yes. There is a 30,000-square-foot building (in the Paseo District) that he called “The Plunge.” He was in the process of converting it to a multi-use space for artists and theatre groups and local businesses. I’m going to try to finish it. It has to be brought up to code and I’ve had to learn a ton. I should get an honorary doctorate in heating and A/C management, I tell ya!
 

What are you most grateful for?

My life. 


 

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Calendar

November 2018

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

Join Untitled for an advanced quilting design workshop about visual thinking with local fiber artist and former Artspace Artist in Residence Sarah Atlee. In this intensive two-day workshop,...

Cost: $150

Where:
Artspace at Untitled
1 NE 3rd
Oklahoma City, OK  73104
View map »


Sponsor: Artspace at Untitled
Telephone: 405.815.9995
Contact Name: Meredith Zerby
Website »

More information

Andy Alligator's is honoring Veterans Day with a free All-Day Pass to all active and retired military with a military ID. Family members will save $5 on an All-Day pass. An All-Day pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Andy Alligator's Fun Park
3300 Market Place Dr
Norman, OK  73072
View map »


Sponsor: Andy Alligator's Fun Park
Telephone: 405.321.7275

More information

Sandi Patty is globally known for her incredible voice and passion for music. In addition to her musical gifts, she is a talented, prolific author - including her newest book, called The Voice:...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crossings Community Church
14600 N Portland
Oklahoma City, OK  73134
View map »


Sponsor: Crossings Community Church
Telephone: 405.302.1233
Contact Name: Susie Wilson
Website »

More information

On the 100th anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended World War I, Canterbury Voices presents Benjamin Britten’s 20th century masterwork “War Requiem.” The piece...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: Canterbury Voices
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

 To celebrate the recent arrival of Hopdoddy Burger Bar in the Oklahoma City area, the from-scratch burger and beer joint is giving away burger “Season Passes” to the...

Cost: Free

Where:
Hopdoddy Chisholm Creek
1316 W Memorial Rd
Ste. 100
Oklahoma City, OK
View map »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

To celebrate the recent arrival of Hopdoddy Burger Bar in the Oklahoma City area, the from-scratch burger and beer joint is giving away burger “Season Passes” to the first 100...

Cost: Free

Where:
Hopdoddy OKC Nichols Hills
1125 NW 63rd
Nichols Hills, OK
View map »

More information

The ultimate love story continues in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. The year is 1907. It is 10 years after his disappearance from the Paris...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

David Sedaris, regular National Public Radio contributor and author of bestsellers Naked, Me Talk Pretty One Day, and Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, will be appearing for...

Where:
Rose State College Hudiburg Chevrolet Center
6000 Prosper
Midwest City, OK  73110
View map »


Sponsor: Innovation Arts & Entertainment
Website »

More information

The ultimate love story continues in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. The year is 1907. It is 10 years after his disappearance from the Paris...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

Associate conductor Matthew Glover will lead the OSU Symphony Orchestra in a concert of hidden treasures from the orchestral repertoire, including Mozart's Overture to The Impresario,...

Cost: General Admission, $10; Students & Seniors, $7

Where:
Seretean Center for the Performing Arts
132 Seretean Center for the Performing Arts
Stillwater, OK  74074
View map »


Sponsor: OSU Symphony Orchestra
Telephone: 405.744.6133
Contact Name: Thomas Taylor Dickey
Website »

More information

The ultimate love story continues in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. The year is 1907. It is 10 years after his disappearance from the Paris...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

In honor of Yellow Submarine's 50th anniversary - as one of its animators, as well as the director of the 1960's Saturday morning Beatles cartoon series - Ron Campbell will make a rare...

Cost: Free

Where:
Framed in the Village
10631 North May Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK  73120
View map »


Sponsor: Rock art show
Telephone: 610.389.1807
Contact Name: Scott Segelbaum
Website »

More information

Ladies, grab your friends and come to Home for the Holidays, the annual event hosted by Crossings Women to kick off the Christmas season in style! You’ll begin the evening by enjoying...

Cost: $25

Where:
Crossings Community Church - OKC Campus
14600 North Portland Avenue
OKC, OK  73134
View map »


Sponsor: Crossings Community Church
Telephone: 405.302.1208
Contact Name: Sheila Urton
Website »

More information

Enjoy an exciting evening of fine French music featuring works by Franck, Faure and Gaubert. Hear Robert Fasol and the Cantate Singers, along with Trio Lyrique, cellist Rob Bradshaw, flutist Alyssa...

Cost: Free —Donations are greatly appreciated and accepted at the door.

Where:
First Christian Church
220 S Webster Ave
Norman, OK  73069
View map »


Sponsor: Scissortail Productions, Inc.
Contact Name: Rob Bradshaw
Website »

More information

Christmas is coming, and so is the one and only Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker. Presenting world-class Russian artists, hand-painted sets, Russian Snow Maidens and jubilant nesting...

Where:
Rose State College Hudiburg Chevrolet Center
6000 Prosper
Midwest City, OK  73110
View map »


Sponsor: Talmi Entertainment
Website »

More information

Come enjoy live, local comedy in Oklahoma City's Plaza District. Shows are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., and the 2nd Saturday of every month also has a family -friendly show...

Cost: $5 - $15

Where:
OKC Improv
1757 N.W. 16th St.
Oklahoma City, OK  73106
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Improv
Telephone: 405.456.9858
Contact Name: Kate McLain-Snipes
Website »

More information

The ultimate love story continues in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. The year is 1907. It is 10 years after his disappearance from the Paris...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visitors to Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary will be able to let their imaginations run wild as they travel back in time with life-size animatronic dinosaurs along a half-mile...

Where:
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
1 Nature Place
McKinney, TX  75069
View map »


Sponsor: Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
Telephone: 972.562.5566
Contact Name: Stephanie Jennings
Website »

More information

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is proud to host an exhibition by members of the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association (TCAA).   The Traditional Cowboy Arts Association...

Cost: 12.50

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »


Telephone: 405.478.2250
Contact Name: Jenni Shrum
Website »

More information

Don’t miss this timely exhibition charting the development of contemporary Indigenous art from the US and Canada. Presenting over 80 artworks including paintings, photography, video,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
600 Museum Way
Bentonville, AR  72712
View map »


Telephone: 479.418.5700
Website »

More information

In honor of Yellow Submarine's 50th anniversary - as one of its animators, as well as the director of the 1960's Saturday morning Beatles cartoon series - Ron Campbell will make a rare...

Cost: Free

Where:
Framed in the Village
10631 North May Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK  73120
View map »


Sponsor: Rock art show
Telephone: 610.389.1807
Contact Name: Scott Segelbaum
Website »

More information

Join us for a holiday card-making workshop with our Fall Artist in Residence, Allie D. Caesar. Allie has just returned from an almost decade-long professional practice as both a printer and artist...

Cost: $40

Where:
Artspace at Untitled
1 NE 3rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73104
View map »


Sponsor: Artspace at Untitled
Telephone: 405.815.9995
Contact Name: Meredith Zerby
Website »

More information

Elijah Tindall is kicking off his Laugh Anyway comedy tour in Norman - an award-winning comic who specializes in bringing high-energy laughs to faces of all ages, he has been featured on multiple...

Cost: $10

Where:
Calvary Chapel of Norman
1401 W Boyd
Norman, OK  73069
View map »


Sponsor: 107.1 KOUJ
Telephone: 405.310.2418
Contact Name: Stephen Herrell
Website »

More information

Come enjoy live, local comedy in Oklahoma City's Plaza District. Shows are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m., and the 2nd Saturday of every month also has a family -friendly show...

Cost: $5 - $15

Where:
OKC Improv
1757 N.W. 16th St.
Oklahoma City, OK  73106
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Improv
Telephone: 405.456.9858
Contact Name: Kate McLain-Snipes
Website »

More information

The ultimate love story continues in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. The year is 1907. It is 10 years after his disappearance from the Paris...

Where:
Civic Center Music Hall-Thelma Gaylord Theater
201 N Walker
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Sponsor: OKC Broadway
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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