Saturday, January 28, 2012

Garrett County, Maryland folk art painting

Garrett County folk art painting
Today I am posting a painting by my husband. He has been a folk artist/outsider artist/visionary artist since 1994 (people call this style of art many things). If you check out tomorrow's post you will see one of our joint paintings.

This painting is of a working farm in Garrett County, Maryland, a place we frequent often because our son owns a vacation home in the area.  Folk artists take many liberties when creating a painting from real life. They see things others do not see. That is what makes them not only special but highly collectible. 

Of course art is in the eye of the beholder. One collector in Texas owns 12 of my husband's paintings and, I kid you not, he took down an original painting from one of the old master painters of the early 19th century from his fireplace, replacing it with one of my husband's painting.
This painting is 16x20 on stretched canvas, ready to hang. Email for price.

Three things go into his paintings: A fireball (sometimes several) that he calls "Messages from 'Nam" - he was a USMC door gunner on a helicopter from 66-67, and recipient of the Purple Heart. 

A white dog hung around his hooch in Vietnam and my husband claimed him as one of his many lucky charms; White Dog can be seen anywhere in a painting, in this case he seems to be helping in the fields. White Dog can be dominant in the painting or simply put, hard to find. 

The last thing that goes into my husband's paintings is a squiggly with two hatch-marks that appears under his signature, a tribute to his high-school friend who joined the Marines with him on the buddy program. His friend was killed in Vietnam, but his spirit lives in each painting.

Sometimes my husband adds a a Huey helicopter in his paintings. Though not in this painting, it is often requested in commissioned paintings, even non-Vietnam pieces, and is another item collectors look for in his work.

If you have ever seen the Huey helicopter display at the Price of Freedom exhibit at the American History Museum in Washington, DC, you may have noticed his three icons painted on the side of the door, as well as the POW symbol, folk-art style. My husband was part of the filming of a Vietnam documentary that involved the Huey. He painted the icons on the helicopter during the filming.

The exhibit will be there for many more years, so check it out - Price of Freedom: Americans at War. Exhibit is on third floor.

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Huey091 is shown landing in our backyard in Georgia for the filming of the documentary. It is there my husband added his trademarks to the now-famous helicopter. We had 6 acres, but it was a tight land. Any more to the right and the Huey would have ended up in 100 blueberry bushes; anymore to the left would have put them into our dock and into the river. It took almost 30 minutes to land in that tight spot.

 On the National Mall

 My husband is shown in tan jacket.

Close-up of art work on Huey inside the exhibit. I have some great shots of the helicopter on exhibit, but I have no idea where they are. Perhaps I will come across them later, or you could just visit. Wink, wink. It is an awesome exhibit, and to think that helicopter is now on the third floor!



Lew said...

The painting captures the nature of Garrett County. And interesting themes he includes in his paintings. I have seen Hueys in other places, but not this one. A lot of my collegues at my last job were Nam vets and most had close encounters with the Huey.

Jackie said...

A fascinating post...and I enjoyed looking at your husband's painting. I went back into your archives and found others of his. Lovely work he does!
My Daddy is 85 and served in WWII in the Navy (in the Pacific.) Not long after the bombings, he was sent into Hiroshima and into Nagasaki. I love our veterans more than I can express. Thank you to your husband from me.

ancient one said...

Great interesting post!!