Over at Happolati’s Miscellany, the other day, I noted the recent passing of Thomas Kinkade, a self-identified Christian artist, whose work I personally despised – too much bright pink luminosity in most of his works; too fantastic, not realistic enough… I once toured a gallery of Kinkade prints, and every work looked almost the same as the next, regardless of the subject matter. (And not in a good way; unlike, say, the works of 19th-century Canadian landscape artist Cornelius Krieghoff, for example.)
Anyway, I’ve long agreed with this decade-old appraisal of Thomas Kinkade’s work, in addition to these more recent ones, here and here which I just recently read (linked from this excellent obit and appraisal). But rereading the Wakefield piece again recently, I just noticed something interesting in there, after having read here that Kinkade had been separated from his wife Nanette, the mother of their four daughters, for two years, and had been shacking up with a new girlfriend for the last year and a half. Wakefield had noted in her piece that:
He is so devoted to his wife, Nanette, that he works a letter ‘N’ into each of his paintings.
Tragic that, having been married so long to her (two of their daughters are teenagers), having dedicated every work to her, they would end up separated. The only thing I’ve found as to an ostensible reason for the separation is the following from here:
Jeanine Bugh, wife of former Monte Sereno mayor Curtis Wright— a friend of Kinkade’s—said the painter and wife Nanette attended several of their winter solstice and dinner parties at their Grandview Avenue home. “They had been so proud of their longtime marriage, but in recent years, they lived apart so that Thom could be the ‘free spirit of an artist.’
Rather odd. Someone else echoed that bit about him being a ‘free spirit':
“He had come to be an extremely affable man,” said Los Gatos painter David Stonesifer, whose paintings grace local homes along with those of Kinkade’s. “He was acting like a free spirit … it was sort of like the kind of thing you wish would have happened to him years ago to have it reflected in his paintings.”
Hmmm. One wonders, though, whether that acting like a ‘free spirit’ was the cause or the effect, of the separation. Then again, artists are often known for being ‘free spirits’, so perhaps it was the cause.
But it does seem like he pedestalized his wife, to quite the degree. We in the manosphere know that’s not a good idea, as it frequently backfires… Beta neediness, kills attraction.
In any case, his passing is certainly a tragic thing for his family, friends, and loved ones, against whom I bear no ill will, and to whom my condolences certainly go out. However, I can’t help but admit that I hope his ‘artistic legacy’ will die with him, and not inspire future generations of Kinkade-wannabes, because that would be even more tragic.