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Charley Kinney’s cat

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I love Charley Kinney’s paintings. They’re expressive and bold, and some of them, like this cat, strike me as very funny. Kinney often set the image within some kind of painted framing device. All the ones I”ve seen are on paper, but I read that in the 70s he painted on window shades. This yellow cat painting hangs in our dining room.

Mr. Kinney lived from 1906-1991. A subsistence farmer, he lived off the land in NE Kentucky his whole life. He made paintings and puppets and he was also a musician. Charley Kinney made hundreds of paintings between 1970 and 1990. His brother Noah made wood sculptures, and the two of them often played music together

I found a video on YouTube featuring the Kinney brothers playing music. Charley also operates his home-made puppets.

We enjoy the the powerful and direct expression of many so-called folk or outsider artists. Charley Kinney didn’t go to art school. No need. His paintings drew from his life experience and his imagination (he also painted supernatural creatures).

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