Joe Tucciarone was born in Youngstown, Ohio. After graduating from Youngstown State University with a Master's degree in physics, he became the artist for the campus planetarium. This began a stellar career as one of the premier planetarium artists in the country. He was offered positions at some of the nation's largest museums and planetariums, but turned them down, preferring to work at mid-size institutions, disdaining large cities.
Joe has worked at the Memphis Pink Palace Planetarium, the Universe Planetarium in Richmond, VA, and the Bradenton Planetarium in Florida, before settling at the Astronaut Memorial Planetarium near Kennedy Space Center. He retired from the planetarium business in 1992, and focusing on his art, he teaches astronomy at the local community college.