Like Kinkade, my family’s roots are in Ireland. I have not yet had the pleasure of visiting my home land but I would like to believe it is just as Kinkade portrayed it in “Emerald Valley.”
As hard as life must have been then, the simplicity and the beauty are what I see in this piece. In the foreground there is a path that winds over the bridge and off into the distance. I envision that path connecting the whole valley, one clan to the next.
As we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year I hope we remember the rich, colorful heritage that so many Americans descend from.
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.