On Saturday, May 26th the Church Street Art Gallery presents an exhibit devoted to American Folk Art, a rich and often-misunderstood art form. We’ll be presenting a fascinating and exciting assemblage of some of the best examples of Folk Art. It’s an exhibit whose breadth reaches beyond the ubiquitous weathervanes one expects to see.

Over the last century, experts and passionate collectors of Folk Art have made great strides in separating the ordinary from the extraordinary, creating standards for what seems on the surface to be naive and untrained. Folk artists are largely self-trained, and always have set out on a personal and unique path to express themselves. Their work is often considered â€primitiveness€ in execution and technique. But the works on display at the Church Street Art Gallery make the point that these artists share a rare gift of being able to communicate excitingly and vividly the passions and obsessions that caused them to create art in the first place.

It’s always exciting to see how ingenious these artists are in their use of everyday objects and in their unique styles of painting. One of the most familiar examples in the 20th century are the paintings of Grandma Moses. With her deceptively simple use of space and subject matter she created storytelling moments of her life in pastoral New England.

Works by artists who are becoming recognized as outstanding talents are often commanding the kind of prices only the best works of traditional art once commanded. A small painted folk art carving of a heart and hand, sold at auction in 2003 for $79,500. Probably the most famous of all American folk paintings, The Peaceable Kingdom was painted in multiples by the Pennsylvania Quaker Edward Hicks. The […]