Monday, April 9, 2012

Light One Up--for Kincade

A reader added the passing of Thomas Kincade “painter of light”“the most collected artist in America” … to the expiration of Marshall and Porsche last week. I reckon, from a dollars-in-the-bank perspective, that Kincade ranks. Surprise I know, but I don’t own any Kincades. And now of course, they’ll be out of my reach financially. Alas. Alas. Alas.
Here’s the reader’s comment…“And now, Thomas Kincade. Say what you will, the guy was 54 and the Times figures it quite likely that his artwork hung in one home in 20 in this country. Not everybody respects Ralph, either. Not everybody admires Ray Kroc or Walt Disney. One in Twenty.
Never mind that he was 54 and died of apparently natural causes.
Vince Van Gawk”
And here’s my response... “AnonThomasKincadeVanGawk…all I can say for Kincade is that he laughed all the way to the bank. When I ponder him and his “work”… I come up with a bad mosh pit of televangelism and that white guy with the big teased out Afro who in the 70’s had that show on Public Television where he taught budding artists how to paint tacky-ass pictures. Light one up. For Kincade.”
My condolences to his wife and daughters. Kincade, it seems to me, got all caught up in the typical—almost boilerplate script of money, fame and ego. My bias nets the Kincade life journey out to have been a bad hook up between BennieHinn and Mark Kostabi.

Onward. Without Light.


Turling said...

Bob Ross! I just watched him on PBS over the weekend! "Happy little trees...", yea Bob, it ain't those kinds of trees making you happy, me thinks.

ADG said...

Turlingocity...Maybe if you plant one of Bob Ross' "happy little trees" in your yard, that cousin of yours won't have trouble finding your happy little house!

JMW said...

Oh my gosh, I remember seeing Bob Ross on PBS, painting what he called, "Happy little trees." I've never been a fan of Kinkade, yes I'm a bit of a snob when it comes to his work. But, you're right - he laughed all the way to the bank. It's amazing to think how many homes in this country feature his work.

Anonymous said...

He was not to my taste, either, but I do appreciate that he was trying to paint an ideal world of family and home being illuminated by "light" which was provided by Jesus Christ.

Such a cynical post from you after Easter weekend.

My southern roots advise, "if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all." Especially of the dead.

ADG said...

AnonymousSouthernRoots...I believe that he began as one who was truly inspired to illuminate his pictures with the ideal light of Christ. And I have no doubt that he is in fellowship--right now--with God in Heaven. But I retreat NOT ONE BIT from my assertion that he ended up heading more in the direction of the Benny Hinn--Kostabi combo that I referenced. That facts support it. And I'd bet my bottom dollar that there will be a special place in hell for Bennie Hinn. At least I hope so.

ilovelimegreen said...

Bob Ross is funny but I love Sister Wendy, the art history nun. And ADG, I am sure you have a few choice words about Jeff Koons.

Dave T said...

I was curious about Kinkade, so I looked him up on that always accurate source Wikipedia. Sourced from a LA Times article, it appears Mr. Kinkade left his mark on a Winnie the Pooh statue outside a Disney hotel in Disneyland. Poor Winnie the Pooh, seems that he too was "painted with light".
His cloying art's success is better attributed to marketing and bad taste than being something noteworthy.

CeceliaMc said...

Kincade's work is easy to dismiss as pab and pablum and lord knows sophisticates like me love making fun of that sort tripe, in our witty and ironic way, etc...etc...etc... HOWEVAH...I once opened a rather large Christmas card and found myself instantly tearing-up over a sublime Kincade scene of a snowy, impossibly idyllic neighborhood, festooned in the cheeriest of holiday swag.

"See, this is what it like when your mama was a girl", I said to my instantly bored daughter. "We went caroling, and visited neighbors, and decorated from the cellar to the dome..."

Frankly, I'd wager that inside every one of us there is a goofy geeky square who eats this stuff with a spoon. NO ONE more so than me.

I'd wager too that Kincade knew that from jump street.

Sandra said...

I'll take blank walls over a Thomas Kincade. Last Halloween, my son dressed up as Bob Ross and his wife was a "happy little tree". :-)xoxo

Young Fogey said...

I agree with CeceliaMc 100%. I would rather live in a world that looks like a Kincade painting than the ugly, crass, and brutish one I actually inhabit--and I live someplace many people consider one of the most beautiful in the country (let's just say "around Monterey").

Regardless, there is a distinction between art and commercialism; Warhol was thoroughly on the commercial side, as are Keene and the people who paint Elvis, dogs playing cards, and the like on black velvet. I have no problem with Kincade making money from what he did. Nuthin' wrong with making a buck--honestly, at least.

Anonymous said...

I was born in February of 1958 and Mr K was born in January. I have tried painting from time to time and have even sold some paintings. That is pretty much where my life's resemblance to Mr K's ends. He has more wives, more children, and more money than I have. He also has ( if ADG's picture is accurate) a higher BMI than I do- and I worry about my own. Having been born in a certain proud aristocratic backwater between Georgia and North Carolina, I can tell you that nobody combines that hairstyle, that jewelry, that physique and that life and gets away with it- at least not on my coast. He looks like Kathy Bates in drag. May he Rest in Peace, bless his heart.

Oh, but ADG, is he wearing your fave SB peak confection?

Wentworth Tradd

Anonymous said...

To me Kincade was a technician, not a painter/artist. Like formula romance novelists, he figured out how to paint in a technical style that appealed to the masses and made millions doing it. Not faulting him for making money on his creations. Just sayin'.

While I would never hang one of his paintings in my house or office (the one exception being a portrait of Christ that was actually quite stunning), I admit to having been fascinated by the light within the houses. His houses often remind me of the children's classic, "Snow White", and I could picture her living in one of his English Tudor style cottages with the Seven Dwarfs. They evoke nice childhood memories. That being said, I detest those hideously UGLY bushes and flowers in lavender and such. So to sum it up for me at any rate, his paintings are technical masterpieces with a heavy helping of cloying sentimentality that make them fit neatly in the category of sofa art. Granted it is expensive sofa art, but sofa art none the less. As to the man himself, that's between Mr. Kincaid and God.


Suburban Princess said...

Just because he didnt suffer for his art and wasn't a drain on society for it, doesn't mean he isnt just as good as any other painter. Just because his work isn't to everyone's taste also doesn't mean his work is any less valid. I think his paintings are pretty and who wouldn't love to live in such a sweet, cozy place.