One of the many highlights of working here at T.K. at the Village is meeting artists whose work we represent. This past year we hosted several artist receptions where I was able to not only interact with the artists but also photograph them.
I want to begin with James Seward. This past year was the second time I had the honor of visiting with Mr. Seward. This meeting was very special because it was the last time he would be here; Mr. Seward passed on Dec. 26th, 2011. While here he was working on the next to last painting of his lifetime, Rejoice In The Lord. A retired Baptist minister, Mr. Seward was most well known for bringing Bible stories to life through his paintings. We are very blessed to have these incredible works of art to remember him by.
I have described Jack E. Dawson’s work as Spiritually Patriotic. When I got to meet him last year I asked what he thought of that description; he said he liked it very much. As he sat and quietly sketched a church on the back of one of his pieces for a client, I got to pick his brain about Reviewing the Troops. He said that his inspiration was The Vietnam Conflict and the lack of respect that history has shown our service men and women that served there. Although the focus of the piece is The Vietnam War Memorial, he has remembered and honored those that have served in many other wars and conflicts through out this countries history. The Vietnamese woman and child are meant to remind us that there are many casualties of war; not just those that served.
Frogs, really? Yes, really! Jann Harrison has made her mark on the art world with one frog in particular: Francois Andre Midas Fibian! Francois is a world traveler, has impeccable taste in wine, clothing, and expecially women. Although he has been seen with many beautiful women, he recently became engaged to Lola Piccard, a stunningly beautiful…..well….frog!
One of the artist that we host regularly is Thomas Kinkade highlighter Janet Cairns. Janet has been highlighting Kinkade’s work for over 10 years and like all Kinkade highlighters, she is an accomplished artist. Janet was hosted for her first solo art show last year in Rhode Island and sold every piece she showed there. Having her in our gallery is a delight and lots of fun!
In 2011 we had our first official Mark Keathley highlighting event. For this event we brought in artist Clifford Land. Like the highlighters for Kinkade’s work, Clifford is a recognized artist in his own right. One of his most famous accomplishments was the iconic DKNY wall in Soho in NYC. Clifford is a gifted portrait artist and enjoys coupling famous people with famous characters.
Mark Keathley visits our gallery twice each year in spring and fall. Mark is becoming quite famous, his work being sought after more and more each year. These events swell the gallery to overflowing with admirers anxious to have him enhance their Keathley with a personal sketch and his signature. In spite of his fame, Mark is one of the most humble, down to earth folks I have ever known. Mark’s work can be seen at most Art of the South galleries as well as galleries coast to coast. The prestigious Museum of Biblical Art in Dallas has acquired the original for Dance of Grace as well as displaying Mark’s tribute art for the 10th anniversary of 911.
On April 21st, 2012 we will host Mark Keathley once again. Make a point to come meet this rising star that some are calling America’s Artist!
I grew up in the upper east corner of Tennessee in the twin cities of Bristol, TN/VA. On Sunday afternoons my dad would tour me and my brothers around the surrounding areas to see some of our local treasures. I will always remember the day we entered the gates of the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina; I was 10 years old. After winding through the enchanting three mile drive we passed through the imposing wrought iron gates and I was mesmerized. I believe that this experience instilled in me the appreciation for architecture that I have enjoyed my whole life.
On my first day as an Art Consultant at T.K. in the Village in Gatlinburg I was asked to find my favorite Kinkade image for my business card. When I saw “Elegant Evening at Biltmore” I did not have to look any farther. In my opinion there is no finer example of Kinkade’s gift with light. As the lights dim on this piece the house comes alive with a warm glow and the sky is rich with depth and color.
George Vanderbilt envisioned a legacy that his heirs keep alive today. Thomas Kinkade’s “Elegant Evening ” is a tribute to that vision.
While there are many images in our galleries that evoke a spiritual feeling, the one that moves me the most, without doubt, is “He Leadeth Me” by Mark Keathley. In my interpretation the shepherd stands in a field looking toward heaven thanking God for the incredible beauty that surrounds him and his place in it. There is a simplicity and honesty that stirs me deep within. Light peeks through the clouds streaming down on the shepherd and his flock like God’s grace. For me, communication with my Higher Power is this simple, this accessible.