Leonard Jones - Outsider/Folk Art
Leonard Jones is a self-taught artist who lives in rural Lincoln County, GA where he was born and raised. He was born in the early 1950s and made his first painting while he was still in school, but ended up having to put it aside for a while in order to support himself as a laborer for a number of years. Jones paints scenes that are inspired by childhood memories on roofing tin and plywood. Some favorite subjects include fishermen on the Savannah River, blues musicians, and his local community.
Jones still lives in a no-frills farmhouse with very few amenities that he prefers because he says it inspires him and enables him to let his paintings “take him to places.” His images are snapshots of southern rural life, where the figures often face away from the viewer or have their faces obscured by the brims of hats, as if “caught unaware of the painter.” Jones paints by spreading large blocks of color across his scrap wood or roofing tin with enamel house paint and a large house painting brush. He then paints the subjects in with his fingers, leaving his fingerprints visible in many of his paintings. For smaller subjects or greater detail, he uses a stick or sometimes the handle of a brush. His works have come to receive much acclaim in recent years, appearing in various gallery shows and at the House of Blues.