The Mississippi River near Hannibal

  • 12” x 36”
  • Oil on Ampersand Gessobord, 2” birch cradle
  • $3900
  • Pre-publication Rate for Giclée Print on archival paper, 10″ x 30″ image size – $199, plus tax and shipping. Publication Date – September 30, 2017
  • Giclée Prints will be $395++ after September 30, 2017

The river town of Hannibal, MO is my birthplace. The spirits of Samuel Clemens and Molly Brown, among others, contribute to the character of the place, which sits nestled among the bluffs of the Mississippi River. It’s a place where stories pique the imagination, soothe, scare and tantalize. Perhaps a reason is the unpredictable rise and fall of the river which creates an uncertainty for where you might be able to stand tomorrow. The hospital where I was born is now abandoned and boarded up. My old high school is an elementary school. Things change during a lifetime. But the bluffs above the town change in geologic time, letting you know how brief our lives are and at the same time allowing for a sense of timelessness.

The painting blends many images relating to the area’s past and present. Downtown Hannibal sits in a valley at sunset with the iconic lighthouse above the river. A floodgate system now saves part of the town from the ravages of spring floods. I show workmen closing the gates as the water rises. Bison are imagined as having once wandered down the maple forested bluffs in autumn with hills made golden by falling maple leaves. A blackberry thicket grows along a bay inlet where a kayaker can harvest to her heart’s content. A water snake, turtles and catfish rest nearby while the startled frog leaps. A dragonfly hovers above the mud bank and an eagle glides above. The middle panel shows Mark Twain’s statue standing in Riverview Park at sunrise. The right panel shows the channeled, but still wide river, used as a transportation artery; the paddleboat, the barge and faintly, canoes are indicated on the eastern bank. Our culture has chosen to try to control river flooding with levees, locks and dams. Native Americans used mounds as a solution for living with the breathing river. Interpretive centers for the mound cultures can be found throughout the country. Cahokia Mounds is nearby in east St. Louis. The river is an important flyway for migrating birds indicated by the ducks headed up river. A Great Blue Heron flies above fellow birds nesting in trees along the shoreline. A Native American of the Illini tribe gazes at a Monarch butterfly that has landed on his hand. A male Monarch flutters near the blooming butterfly milkweed where a chrysalis hangs. A rabbit hides under a sumac. A couple stands on Lover’s Leap which is painted with artistic license to resemble the Birger figurine, an ancient pipestone sculpture found south near the river.

Breakfast on the misty river

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 36″ x 48″
  • $6900
  • Giclée Prints
    12″ x 16″ image size – $395
    24” x 32” image size – $495

As the river meanders towards the horizon the warm light of the sunrise colors the mist. Clouds echo the river’s trail, partially covering a low lit moon. Bountiful food, savory and sweet, and coffee make for a morning
feast. Soft breezes blow, lifting the table’s skirt revealing butterfly milkweed, a prairie plant.

It is said to never under-estimate the importance of encountering wild things during moments of solitude. The artist forsakes solitude for companionship and offers up lots of wild things:
A butterfly glides toward the table, one clings to the billowing cloth while another sits astride a macaroon.
Caterpillars crawl on cloth and a milkweed plant, where a chrysalis hangs.
A buck and doe stand alert.
Great Blue Herons fly through vaporous ribbons of mist.
Ducks are startled and erupt in flight from the river’s edge.
Turkeys swim and scurry up the bank.
An eagle soars.
A ladybug sits.
A crystal rests on the table.
Hummingbirds flutter and feed around the zinnia and turkey feather bouquet.
Planets, the Milky Way, comets, galaxies and the morning star hint at the bigger, cosmic picture.

Bikes to Canoes, Page

Clink on this link Family Marshall Trip Part 1 to follow the Marshall family through the woods and down the rivers, around the Gulf and the Florida panhandle on a travel adventure. The final panel shows a NASA shuttle blasting off. Guess who is on that ship? Follow their adventures in Part II

  • Watercolor and Ink on Moleskin Watercolor Paper
  • 3.5″ x 10″
  • In a private collection

Maxx at 18 months

June 23, 2009

Maxx at Home, 18 months

Maxx at Home

Detail, Maxx at Home

Detail, Maxx at Home

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 12″ x 12″
  • In the collection of N/AM

Maxx has the perfect house for a little boy. The river edged by woods lies just over the levy.  The bike trail leads to town or far from it. The place has a magic to it, just as the boy does. Maxx’ magic touch is easier to see in the detail. He’s the treasure at the end of the rainbow. His parents aret barely visible inside the picture window, which is enveloped in another rainbow. An eagle soars in the distance.

Passages

Passages on the Mississippi River

  • Oil on Ampersand Gessobord
  • 48″ x 24″,  diptych
  • $7900
  • Limited Edition Giclée Print on archival paper, 24″ x 12″ image size – $395,  plus shipping
  • Contact the artist.

I grew up not far from the Mississippi River. It’s an awesome river, beautiful, powerful and dangerous. The Mississippi continues to be heavily used, abused by some, and for me, a symbol of adventure and freedom.

The photos in the still life represent generational passages. They are of myself and one of my sisters, our grandmother and our grandchildren. We’re all in front of the same viewpoint found in Riverview Park in Hannibal, MO.

There is a fish fossil being uncovered in the foreground near the turkey feathers. A variety of insects are in the still life mix and the male red winged blackbird courts the female while an eagle soars overhead through voyaging clouds. The full moon rises in the east.