Skip to comments.Thomas Kinkade, one of nation's most popular painters, dies suddenly in Los Gatos at 54
Posted on 04/06/2012 8:34:22 PM PDT by Free ThinkerNY
Thomas Kinkade, the "Painter of Light" and one of most popular artists in America, died suddenly Friday at his Los Gatos home. He was 54.
His family said in a statement that his death appeared to be from natural causes.
"Thom provided a wonderful life for his family,'' his wife, Nanette, said in a statement. "We are shocked and saddened by his death.''
His paintings are hanging in an estimated 1 of every 20 homes in the United States. Fans cite the warm, familiar feeling of his mass-produced works of art, while it has become fashionable for art critics to dismiss his pieces as tacky. In any event, his prints of idyllic cottages and bucolic garden gates helped establish a brand -- famed for their painted high lights -- not commonly seen in the art world.
"I'm a warrior for light," Kinkade told the Mercury News in 2002, alluding not just to his technical skill at creating light on canvas but to the medieval practice of using light to symbolize the divine. "With whatever talent and resources I have, I'm trying to bring light to penetrate the darkness many people feel."
(Excerpt) Read more at mercurynews.com ...
I know someone who has worked for Kinkade for at least 10 years. My son just called him and the guy said they’re all screwed but mostly they’re upset for his kids...4 little girls apparently.
Can I shill for my sister’s work???
I think I saw that in a “news magazine” type show - but it is a restaurant/bar. I think it was there that some guy stole one of the paintings during the New Year’s party. It was returned later!
Evaluating art ends up being like evaluating wine. In the end, when you make it past the "nose" and "varietal" and even "color" (do a few black glass tastings and your Chardonnays and Merlots collide more than most know), it is about what you like.
The same is true for art. Norman Rockwell, in his time, was considered to be a sell-out to what we would now call Conservative Values. He wasn't "cutting edge." He wasn't changing the paradigm." But I 100% guarantee his "haircut" is extremely evocative (as a simple example). Art is what makes you feel good.
“Sorry for his passing.
His art was vapid and sophomoric.”
It was not to my tastes, but aesthetics are personal. I certainly admire his dedication and joy in his vocation, and am sorry he passed so soon. He brought a lot of joy to a lot of people.
Velvet paintings are what is known in the art business as “kitsch”.
Wikipedia has a good article on the subject, and by no means should you feel insulted by the term.
Well, here’s hoping that perhaps that statement “they are all screwed” is premature or an over-reaction at an intense time for the family. I can’t imagine Kincaid’s family has already decided the whole thing is over and will be shut down. Those workers he has in his studio have learned all the techniques (maybe not every person knows everything) for making those paintings and would have enough talent to keep producing paintings.
We live in a true golden age of creativity, where so many people have the opportunity to explore their creative talents. Diversity in this arena is a good, no, great thing as it allows for a huge variety of individual styles, which, if you don't like them, you don't have to look at them or buy them for that matter.
As far as poker playing dogs go, count me as a fan. For a series of pictures to be over 100 years old and still maintain their appeal tells me that they are indeed something special. Special enough that, on February 15, 2005, the originals of A Bold Bluff and Waterloo were auctioned as a pair to an undisclosed buyer for US $590,400.
In Cleveland, the Museum of Art had a chance some years ago to buy a large collection of work by Norman Rockwell. They passed, saying that they wanted art, not illustration. A stupid decision, IMHO, and although I'm not well versed as to what is in their collection, I think it a safe bet that there would be several 20th century pieces of “modern” or abstract art valued at tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, the value of which if based on artistic content alone would be worth but tens or hundreds of dollars and nothing more.
R.I.P Mr. Kinkade.
Art is the means by which an individual shares his unique vision of the world with other people. It is the ultimate means of human communication. To the extent that others, through the artist’s work, can be made to perceive the world as the artist has perceived it, the art is successful.
“There is plenty of good art around and many excellent starving artists, whom you could easily find at street fairs and in cafes where they display their work.”
There is a frame shop about 3 miles from my house where the proprietor displays the works of local artists, many of whom are ‘just housewives’. The works are really nice. Serious composition, broad range of subject matter, thoughtful renderings and classical palettes. Truly solid work. Most of the paintings are priced at around $275 - $400 for original work of high quality. People should trust their instincts, and buy from working, local artists if they are interested in starting a collection with modest means.
it has little to do with it being "good" or not....
same with music...poetry...writing...movies...
people know what they like...
Nice paintings! Her online gallery is now on my favorites list.
I strongly suggest she take her portfolio to a few interior designers. Sometimes their clients want artwork but have a tight budget and really want paintings that color coordinates with their specific interiors.
It can be challenging but your sister’s works are good, variable, and she just might like the challenge of creating paintings for a specific room. Many artists in the past two hundred years have started out that way.
As I recall (it’s been a while since I’ve heard the stories) it was a former Kirby vacuum executive who took Kinkade into household name status.
I think they went a little too far selling nick nacks on the shopping channels.
There is one of his paintings in my hall - it’s just one of those places that makes you want to linger.
as for wine, I couldn't tell the difference between the "good" stuff and the discount variety in the supermarket....but I'll probably always vote for the sweetest cheapest stuff if I know me...LOL...
viva la difference..
I sort of like his “Vapid and Sophmoric” works.
Who the hell are you anyways?
I sort of like his “Vapid and Sophmoric” works.
Who the hell are you anyways?
“Modern” art is quite literally a joke.
sorry paul, i meant that for Drango.
“The one thing I always noted about his paintings was how much I wanted to live in the places he painted.”
Living in one of those paintings would be wonderful.
Art is to you what it is to you.
I can assure you that there is a great deal of renowned fine art that does not fit this description.
Goya, for instance. Some of his works can be downright terrifying in the subject matter and detail. But the vibrancy of the color, the skill and the vision, the balance and composition, not to mention the outrage of the moment recorded so compellingly, you just can’t look away, it’s magnetic.
“viva la difference.. “
Agreed. Aesthetics are at the end of the day -very- personal and subjective. The man supported himself and his family, he certainly did not bother to play to his critics, and he brought many people a lot of satisfaction and inspiration. Not a bad record at all.
Given that one of the real morsels of artistic goodness for *me* is a grisly R. E. Howard tale with Frank Frazetta cover art, I am not going to sneer at Kincaide’s enthusiasts.
I agree, but I perceive you're not making many friends here by pointing that out.
Kinkade, by the way, affords us a salutary lesson in how to jerk the chains of the hoi polloi. You simply find out what it is they cleave to, and give it a voice. Rush Limbaugh does it magnificently. His critics think that it's the people who are following his lead, but in actuality it's the other way around. His brilliance lies in being a master of articulating what the average person can only feel.
Yea, god forbid an artist becoming or wants to become successful huh?
So, if an artist does become successful do the rest of you call him a sell out?
This art crap reminds me of the black community.
Hey, Is that my sock?!
There is NOTHING worse than scraping paint.
It’s a never ending task.
the more you scrape the more you scrape....
I painted houses as a teen and still have house painting nightmares to this day....
actually the painting was the easy part.
it was the scraping.....The SCRAPING!!!
It’s funny how almost every picture from the article refers Kinkade as “Thomas Kinkade, the mass market painter”
Like it is not the dream of every artist to be “Mass Market”.
You are talking about the fools that bought a Kinkade as an investment.
How about the other millions that just liked the look of his paintings?
I know i sure do, there is about a hundred i wish i lived in.
We are not all art investors, sometimes people, believe it or not just buys a painting that they believe will look good in their den or living room.
nothing more ponygirl.
If things had turned out differently, you might have had the chance. I worked as a surveyor on a development on Lake Couer d’Alene where each lot and home was to be made to look like a Kinkade painting. But, the developers ran out of money and ended up stiffing a lot of people, us included...
Whatever, I never paid for more than a calendar.
Maxfield Parrish is one of my favorites. I love his work.
Why don’t you post up one of your paintings so we can compare?
"Into the World Came a Soul Called Ida"
"The Picture of Dorian Gray"
"The Door" ("Also titled "That Which I Should Have Done I Did Not Do")
I once read about that development.
The houses were slated to be sold in the multi-million $$$$ range.
I remember seeing a pic of a few of the grinning developers and asking myself if even they could afford to live in one of those houses they planned on building.
It think i just might have to check out this Ivan Albright.
Looks pretty cool
If you are ever in Chicago check out the Art Institute. They have a good Albright exhibit, including my favorite, “The Door.”
I kept a full, life-size print of that one on my wall all the way through college and for quite a while afterward.
My first ex-wife didn’t like it one little bit.
Some one said, an anonymous source said, a friend said.
Give me a break.
But why did YOU bother to look that up and post it upon learning of his death?
I think you are vapid and sophomoric.
His art was beautiful. If it makes you stop and pause for a second in life and take in your breath, I don’t hardly call that vapid (without life) or sophomoric.
Your comment was though.
Sad the way the trolls posted nonsensical items in his actual art, so others would be deceived.
Oh that’s right he painted churches and calming scenes of beauty.
That brings out the leftist Obama hatred.
I'm sorry for his family's loss, and my hat's off to the man for knowing how to make a living honorably. He was smart. He knew his customer and catered to their lowest common denominator tastes.
He would never have been invited to membership in this group.
I appreciate your post. Everyone can be a critic. I’ve taken art classes over the years, as much to pull my mind out of my left brained profession as anything and at least with art I don’t have to worry about punishing those who live with me as I do if I play the piano or sing ((I have lived with musicians all my adult life). I am proud of some pencil drawings I’ve done of old family photos. I had them framed and there they hang in the spare bedroom. But I know that they aren’t great works of art. What they did was help me understand a bit the process of creating art. I do agree with other people who have posted that many truly great artists are a bit to a lot nuts. Many have mental health issues and addictive personalities. It sounds like Thomas did and that may be what led to his early death. I don’t have any paintings but I do have a little Christmas music box with his name slapped on it. It reminds me of a little cardboard and glitter church that was under the Christmas tree when I was a child. I think that’s what artists like Norman Rockwell and Thomas Kinkade did, remind of us of our childhood.
I love this thread - thanks for the link.
My two cents worth: good art is what you like; great art is what endures.
Same way with music. We’ve got a radio station in the Chicago area that plays a terrific selection of (what I consider) good, listenable music - the classier 70’s/80’s stuff - more Steely Dan than you hear on most stations, as an example. One of their tag lines is something like “the greatest music ever made”.
Well, 200 years from now people will still be listening to Bach and Mozart, and probably Joplin and Ellington. Becker and Fagen? Maybe, but I wouldn’t dare to venture that as a certainty.
If individuals like Kinkade, that’s fine, and by that standard, he’s good. Will anybody care about him in 200 years? Now that’s another question.
And in the context of your post, I have a feeling that if somebody slipped a lesser work by Munsch or Chagall in that gallery at your link, 98% of the viewers wouldn’t notice. Yet most would agree that Munsch and Chagall are great artists.
Or maybe we’ll have to wait another 100 years or so to be sure.