North Georgia Mountain Folk Art
by
Ken Woodall



UPCOMING ART SHOWS
2015 Labor Day Show, Washington Square, New York City
Ken Woodall member of Salmagundi Art Club of New York City



Governor Deal and Ken
GOVERNOR DEAL AND KEN

This photo of my painting "PA WRIGHT, OLD BLUE and RED" will be displayed at the inaugural "Art of GA" exhibit at the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta beginning August 27 thru Jan 25, 2013. I presented the painting to Governor Nathan Deal on August 23, 2012.




Emory Cares
EMORY CARES

Recently I delivered a commissioned painting for Dr. Suephy Chen, Associated Professor, Vice Chair Department of Dermatology, Emory University Windship Cancer Center. Painting depicts the great care that I received from Dr. Chen and her staff. Great center, great people, excellent care. Great group of people to whom I will always be indebted. Thanks for the oppportunity to do this painting.

PAINTING NOW ON DISPLAY AT EMORY IN DERMATOLOGY DEPARTMENT

Emory Cares
Dr. Chen receiving painting from Ken Woodall.




Christmas 2014
CHRISTMAS 2014

Every year I do a painting of my grandchildren. This is the 16th painting of Christmas Time. Each year I give the painting to them.

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Miss Lila Crow
MISS LILA CROW'S ARITHMETIC & ART CLASS

This painting is my memory of my first day experimenting with some form of art work. The setting is Miss Lila Crow's 4th grade class at Cornelia Elementary School in Cornelia, GA. Knowing my interest in education was low on my list in the early years, I usually spent lots of time in class wandering off into another world and trying to put some of the thought on paper. Three of my favorite things to draw were: Jet Airplanes, Comic strip characters such as "SNUFFY SMITH" and doing "wooden holes". I think the wooden holes fascinated me because of the "depth" look. Little did I know that 50 years later these simple little things would be a great help in an art world career. Very thankful for the privilege. Also, thanks to all my school teachers and great friends in my school years. Note the little boy on the right bottom doing his thing through Arithmetic Class.

Oil on Linen - 18" x 16"

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Berserk Street Preacher
BERSERK STREET PREACHER

In my little mountain town at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains we were visited off and on by "Street Preachers". This particular painting was the inspiration of when one of our regular preachers went on a frenzy, armed with a shot gun. It all happened in 1951. Local police from my town of Cornelia, GA were called to investigate a shooting, etc. Upon arrival the police were met with gun shots being fired in their direction and others also. My good, long time friend Erford Harrison was with a bunch of boys watching the action. During the time they were also fired on. Both policemen were wounded and hospitalized and the berserk preacher was arrested. BIG TIME IN A LITTLE TOWN.

Oil on Linen - 19" x 16"

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Elvis & Ed
ELVIS & ED

Painting depicts one of television's great shows. In the early days of TV the new singing sensation (Elvis Presley) was about to appear for the first time on THE ED SULLIVAN SHOW at CBS Studio 50 in New York City. I remember it well. All our family was gathered around our fairly new TV set (black and white). Big, big time that night watching Elvis Presley do his thing. Great, great memory!

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Peace in the Valley
PEACE IN THE VALLEY

On lots of occaisons I catch myself dreaming of some of the past times. Great, good memories. This particular painting is really what I like to do. Not complicated, just fun. Lots of great times had in situations like the one pictured. Lots of beautiful valleys in the mountains of NE GA where I grew up.

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LaWanda and the Grand
LAWANDA AND THE GRAND

Commissioned painting finished recently. Relates to a nice lady from Texas who enjoyed and had great memories of hanging around the famous "GRAND THEATRE" in Cornelia, GA. A real honor to do a painting of one of my favorite subjects and memories.

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Moon Making
MOON MAKING

Recent painting called "Moon Making" completed June 27, 2014. Making moonshine liquor was a life for lots of people years ago. Federal Agents were stationed in our little area of the north east GA mountains. Having owned a local drive in theatre, I came in contact with lots of good ole boys that worked and made the substance. I had always wanted to visit one of the stills in person and a friend of mine from the drive in invited me to take a look. Was a little afraid but didn't let that hinder me. Was a great experience and glad I got the opportunity to do so. Illustrated in the painting is my close family relative and hero! He had a fast car and knew how to use it. This lifestyle is almost gone forever!

Oil on Linen

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First Date
FIRST DATE

June 27, 1958 was one of the happiest, most exciting days of my life. It was when I got my auto drivers license, and my first date. On that day, I studied for the test and later would have my first "date". Everything worked out fine in both cases. Enjoyed the day and evening very much. Truly one of my very best memories. By the way, my brother loaned me his almost new 1958 Chevrolet. Was afraid to ask daddy for his car, knew he didn't think I should even be driving so young. My date was one of the prettiest girls around. THE GOOD OLD DAYS!

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The Bird
THE BIRD

A memory that I will probably recall forever. Several years ago when my grandchildren were visiting, the granddaughter noticed a little Cardinal bird had flown into our front window and died. We went outside and checked out the bird. Later she came to me and asked that didn't we need to bury the bird. I agreed so we proceeded to go through a small burial ceremony. This is what I recall. Actual painting varies slightly in colors than shown in the photo.

Oil on Linen

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Cabbage Patch Kids BBQ
CABBAGE PATCH KIDS BBQ

Finished a painting recently of the Cabbage Patch Kids - Baby Land BBQ - cook off in Cleveland, GA. Great get together of some of the best southern BBQ in the United States and Texas, too. Lots of things going on for this annual event. The event is called "HILLBILLY HOG BBQ THROWNDOWN". At this year's event stars of the History Channel's "SWAMP PEOPLE" were present. A great time had by all and even shows some of my good ole buddies from "Wild Pig Roadhouse" doing some fine BBQ.

Oil on Linen

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Memories are Made of This
MEMORIES ARE MADE OF THIS

Scenes and happenings of times gone by have influenced my art work tremendously. Happenings such as this tend to inspire me constantly. A great memory of our old country store gas station still is some of my favorite subject matter. Shown is a typical time long ago with all the happenings around our old store. Some great characters have passed our place such as the Merita bread man (Lee Irvin), Mr. Paul Fitts (our great neighbor), the regular who was always having flat tires. My brother and me washing his car along with my mother and sister taking a break and watching the TV folks delivering our first television. Also the nice girl down the street. Then there was my daddy doing his thing. Great times long ago.

Oil on Linen

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The Tomahawk Club
THE TOMAHAWK CLUB

Growing up in the South was a true pleasure! Enjoyed almost everything during the 1950's especially. The advent of the invention called Television was a real favorite. I could take a trip to "where ever" sitting in the living room. My favorite TV show is and has always been the "ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW". Andy and Barney took me on some really great trips. My favorite of all the episodes was the one called "The Tomahawk Club". The police force was invited to join a fancy men's club in Raleigh. One was accepted, one was not, so neither joined. Feeling sorry for them, Little Opie decided to ask them to join his private club. Good, good old TV memory.

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Pa Wright, Old Blue, and Red
PA WRIGHT, OLD BLUE, and RED

A memory of my grandfather (Pa Wright...good old southern Baptist preacher...never had a TV show and probably helped more people) and his old mule called "BLUE". A good example of good old mountain life in the North Georgia mountains. Remember this scene many times over.

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Mountain Strike
MOUNTAIN STRIKE

This is a great memory painting for me. My father's good friend Paul Fitts had asked me to paint his new fence. I was around 10 years old. Mr Fitts must have bought the cheapest paint he could find. Couldn't hardly see it when you painted. Anyway, at the same time the local furniture factory (which had a Union workforce) had "Gone" on strike. One of the few unions in this area. I remember keeping and eye on them all the time. Depicted is the good old boys doing there picket line and the goings on. This all took place in the 1950's. Will never forget this time. GOOD, good time!

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Goat Man Has a Coke
GOAT MAN HAS A COKE

One of the most memorable happening in our North GA mountain town was a "real character" from Jeffersonville, GA. "THE GOATMAN". He lived there, preached there and once a year would hitch up his 20 or 30 goats and HIT the road up the eastern seaboard. He came thru our little town often. Usually camped across from our little country store under a pine tree. Went over and checked him out often. This particular painting is of him passing thru the downtown area at the thriving Coca Cola Bottling Plant. There was always a ton of folks around taking it all in. Even our town "celebrity" (TY COBB) was taking it all in. Great, Great Memory.

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Last Trip Home
LAST TRIP HOME

The story of this painting was told to me by a couple of my brother's Army friends who were in boot camp together at Camp Atterbury, Indiana in the late 1940's. They were preparing for a trip home to Cornelia in my brother's 1940 Ford coupe when 4 other soldiers also wanted to ride home with them. The front seat held 3 and the remaining 4 rode in the trunk. It was their last trip home before being deployed to the God forsaken country of North Korea. They were stopped for speeding in Gatlinburg, Tn. The officer was going to give my brother a speeding ticket, then in the conversation asked if they were going to North Korea after their leave at home. They replied yes and the officer told them to forget the speeding ticket and God bless. My brother was killed in action June, 1951.

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Hoppy Comes to Town
HOPPY COMES to TOWN

An interesting memory of my best friend. He grew up down the road from Alto, Georgia in the 1950's. His story is that he and his father were going to an old country store to pick up this and that. Getting close to Wilbanks Grocery, they noticed a horse trailer and car in front of the store. It was none other than Hollywood western movie star HOPALONG CASSIDY and his faithful horse "TOPPER". Didn't know if Hoppy was appearing locally or just passing through. Could have been appearing at the old GRAND THEATER in Cornelia, GA. Guess we wil never know. Wish I could have been there. Would have been a big thrill.

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Mr. Fry's Bookmobile
MR. FRY'S BOOKMOBILE

An old childhood memory of the country bookmobile visiting out in the country. Painting is set at my wife's father's old grocery and gas station in the north Georgia mountains. All the little kids and grown folks too would patronize the bookmobile. The driver of the bookmobile was Andrew Fry. Remember him well.

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Olympic Champion Paul Anderson Parade
OLYMPIC CHAMPION PAUL ANDERSN PARADE

In 1956 Paul Anderson of Toccoa, Georgia won the weight lifting Olympic gold medal. He is featured in my home town along the streets with lots of locals looking on. Great parade! Good memory! Great event for a little mountain town in north Georgia mountains.

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Edgar Woodall Pea Ridge Store
EDGAR WOODALL PEA RIDGE STORE

A memory from my early childhood. I remember on cold, or rainy, or snowy days, lots of the hard working fellows on Pea Ridge were unable to work outside so they would gather at my daddy and mama's old store to stay warm by the big old heater. Lots of other things went on in the old store. Tell you about it sometime.

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Sign Man
SIGN MAN

Have seen the religious signs high in trees and poles in the north Georgia mountains since my childhood. Always wondered who climbed the tall trees and poles. Now I know.

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Honest Ken Woodall Carnival Shows
HONEST KEN WOODALL CARNIVAL SHOWS

Painting of a north GA carnival that traveled from small town to small town in the 50's-60's. I remember it well. Lots of rides, shows, games and most important of all - the "Girlie Show". This painting is titled "Honest Ken Woodall Carnival Shows". I have done quite a few carnival paintings over the years. My name is on the big truck in the center. When I do commissions for folks I usually put their name somewhere on a truck, billboard, etc. The carnival's real name was "Honest Homer Scott Carnival Shows". Hope he doesn't mind my changes.

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Meaders Folk Potters
MEADERS FOLK POTTERS

The world famous MEADERS FOLK POTTERS of White County, GA. All that did pottery are included in this painting: JOHN MEADERS (the first), Aunt Arie, Reggie Meaders, Cleater, John Rufus, Caulder, Cheever, Edwin, David and the most famous of all - Lanier Meaders. I also have depicted friends of mine, Ken and Janie Morris (collectors of Meaders family pottery).

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Ghost of Cannon Bridge
GHOST of CANNON BRIDGE

A local legend ghost story from the area I grew up. The town is called Demorest and it is in the state of Georgia. About 1/2 mile from my house is a bridge called CANNON BRIDGE. In 1939 a fellow killed his wife and put her in the Soque River. He later was convicted of the crime. Legend has it that even now on a certain day in April of each year unusual, eerie sounds and happenings take place. Locals and even police officers have heard and seen things happen at the bridge. Cars have been known to stop running. This is my vision of the happenings.

Oil on linen

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That mule, old Pa Wright, and me
That MULE, OLD PA WRIGHT, and ME

Recently I heard an old song on the radio by Walter Brennan called Old Rivers. I recalled the line he used several times ... THAT MULE, OLD RIVERS, AND ME. Memories of my childhood came calling and I recall sort of the same thing. In this case it was ... THAT MULE, OLD PA WRIGHT (my grand pa), AND ME.

Oil on linen
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Elvis at the Omni
ELVIS at the OMNI

A couple of years before his death, my wife and I along with several friends attended one of Elvis' concerts. This particular one was at the Atlanta Omni Arena. It was a super evening with the KING. Song after song. In this painting I have tried to pass along the show using my art work.
Oil on linen - 15" x 19"

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Cap'n and the trick Dog
CAP'N and the TRICK DOG

Growing up in North GA our family owned and operated an old grocery store, service station and cafe. All us kids workd at the store. On one particular day a fellow and his dog stopped by. One thing led to another and all of a sudden the man was doing all kinds of tricks with his dog. I remember the dog could count with his barks or by moving his paw on the ground. After the show was over the owner of the dog went over to the Coca Cola drink box and got a Coke. At that point my father held out his hand for payment. The man was irritated with my father and said: Do you mean after my dog and I put on a 20 minute show you're going to charge me for a Coke? My father told this story many, many times and always said he told the man to forget the money. And he did! A real high light in my earlier years.

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Sign of the Times
SIGN of the TIMES

I owned and operated a Drive In Theatre in north GA for many, many years. In this painting I have tried to show the last marquee change. I am taking down the last film that I showed and putting up the "FOR SALE" and "FOR LEASE" signs. Still miss the old theatre. Had lots of good times there and made lots of money some years and some years not much. But I enjoyed every minute.

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Ty Cobb Back Home
TY COBB

The world's greatest baseball player, TY COBB returned to his home area in the late 50's. I met Ty as a young child and have treasured the moment forever. Depicted in this painting is Ty and friends and me on a local street corner in Cornelia, Georgia.

GREAT, GREAT MEMORY

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David Copperfield
DAVID COPPERFIELD

David Copperfield recently purchased a piece from me and invited me to deliver. Was treated to one of his shows and this is what I recall.

Good Times




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Woody Willow Show
WOODY WILLOW TELEVISION SHOW

A very early television show from WSB Television in Atlanta, Georgia. I recall watching this show many, many times. This painting was recently purchased by the British Broadcasting System for use on the LEARNING CHANNEL.

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Auction Wedding
AUCTION WEDDING

Recently at an old antique auction in the north Georgia mountains that I attend quite regularly the auctioneer announced that the following Saturday there would be a wedding taking place. Of  course, I attended. This is the result. THE BRIDE WORE FLIP FLOPS.

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Prints Available at $20 each



Auction Wedding
BILL MONROE at the DRIVE-IN

Bill Monroe, country music's greatest bluegrass artist played at the drive-in theatre I owned and operated starting in the mid 60's. As I recall, he was the only live show at the theatre during my 28 years operation. SUPER GREAT MEMORY OF THE PAST.

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Auction Wedding
CHANGE OF LIFE
To me a very sad thing happening all across the nation including the Georgia mountains is the demise of the small rural downtown areas. With that happening the conglomerates such as WalMart, Home Depot, Mc Donalds, Multi Screen Cinemas, etc. are in charge now. THIS IS AS POLITICAL AS I GET.

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Auction Wedding
AT THE DRIVE-IN

This is a painting that I did of the Cleveland Drive-In Theatre in Cleveland, Georgia that I owned and operated for many years. I have tried to depict a typical night at the theatre.
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May be seen in the Office of Membership at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia

Prints available at $25 each



Auction Wedding
DELIVERANCE
During my movie theatre days, I was invited by Warner Bros. Pictures to visit sight of filming for the motion picture Deliverance. The feature was filmed in Rabun County, Georgia, about 40 miles from my home. This is my recollection of that big day.

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Can be seen in the permanent collection of Bascom-Louise Gallery in Highlands, North Carolina



Auction Wedding
FIRST RADIO ON PEA RIDGE
In the 1930's my father was first person to own a radio in our little North Georgia community. Story goes that almost every Saturday night most of the neighbors would come to our house to listen to the radio and most of all THE GRAND OLD OPRY. When the hour was getting late my father would start getting nervous and finally ask everyone to leave. This is my vision of the story.

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Goatman at Dick's Hill
GOATMAN at DICK's HILL
In the 1950's there was a character from Jeffersonville, GA who would hitch his goats to a rickety wagon and start his yearly journey, going as far as Maine. He traveled with his wife, son, and 25-30 goats. Hence, they called him the GOATMAN. This setting is an old grocery, cafe, and garage close to my home.

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