Florida Governor Charlie Crist chose image of a painting done by one of the original Highwaymen, James Gibson of Ft. Pierce, for the governor’s holiday greeting cards this year.
The Governor’s Mansion in Tallahassee is home to 22 of James Gibson’s paintings. Gibson completed Nightscape I, the painting featured on the card, about a year ago for Crist. It depicts a palm tree on the bank of the Indian River.
In the early 1950’s through the 1980’s a group of twenty-six African-American artists painted beautiful landscapes that displayed the serene, undeveloped Florida landscape of their time.
During that time, they were sold around Florida for about $25.00 each, $35.00 tops. Today they could be worth thousands. Many tourists as well as Florida residents purchased them.
These artists are known as the Florida Highwaymen and because of the tranquil scenes and history involved, their original paintings are highly demanded by collectors and enthusiasts.
They used vivid and bright colors in their paintings, sometimes using house paint, I am told, to display the beautiful untouched Florida landscape. They painted wind-bent palm trees, serene sunsets, churning oceans and bright red Poinciana trees.
See another account Here.
The Highwaymen Winter Event will be held in Mt. Dora, Florida, on January 10, 2009, where some of the artists, including James Gibson, will be appearing. Free admission.