♦ Featured in Southern Style: A Downhome Perspective
♦ Featured in Painting the Country Life 11.12.10
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To most, this building is just another old building. But, to many of the locals, Smyrna Baptist Church, located in Stevenson, Alabama, holds special memories. This old building once was a local schoolhouse long before it was a church building. A resident of Stevenson, Willie B. Rutherford, went to school here as a child and was an active member of the church during her elderly years, until her passing. The history of this building and folks like Willie B. (as she was known) went through my mind while painting this pastel landscape in 1985. With nearly every stroke of the pastel stick my thoughts would visit the little church: the smells of the old building, laughter of children, conversations with deep country accents, watching Mr. Golf, due to age, carefully make his way up the church steps. Much reflection occupied my mind during this painting process like retro T.V. reruns of Andy Griffith episodes. I dedicate this particular edition, the modified edging edition, to those who were affiliated with this old building, many of which I personally knew back then and still remember today.