I first read about Thomas Kinkade in some American magazine. I think it was 1998. Was fascinated by the samples of his work they featured on the article because never before had I seen light so perfectly infused into a painting. From a distance some of them could be mistaken for photographs.
A year later someone randomly sent me a holiday card with the painting below and the love affair continued.
Over the years I read about how this man who called himslef the ‘Painter of Light’ was criticized for commercializing his art too much. Which is probably true considering how an estimated 1 in 20 American homes own a Thomas Kinkade painting, not to mention other types of merchandise and the movie.
I wonder why thats such a bad thing though. Some people choose to stash away their art in a stuffy gallery, some are not even discovered while alive. This guy chooses to make a good buck out of it. So what?
As mercenary as it may be, it also allows more people to experience the beauty of his work.
I dont know the first thing about art really and neither do I draw any religious inferences from them, but these paintings to me are serenely beautiful. And while I enjoy the sight of them, it really doesnt matter to me if the same picture has already been reproduced on a million coffee mugs and greeting cards.
After all, chocolate box art is still art isnt it?