Web Exclusive: Mizzou Painting
Tom Kinkade is one of America's best known artists. He coined the term: "painter of light."
Now local Kinkade fans can decorate their living rooms with art work inspired right from the University of Missouri campus.
On Monday evening, Steve Torres, a good friend of Kinkade, and his son Matt revealed Kinkade's latest masterpiece at the Old Hawthorne Club to fans, admirers, and bidders.
"They say there is a Kinkade piece in one in every ten American homes," Torres said.
Last night one more home, got to add his work. The piece was auctioned off to Columbia resident Darlene Johnson with a top bid of $4500, but Kinkade isn't keeping the funds- it goes straight to the "For All We Call Mizzou"campaign. Kim Voss, president of the Mizzou Alumni Association, is especially grateful.
"It's certainly special that someone like him, a world-renowned painter came here," Voss said. "And what's even more wonderful is that he chose to give the proceeds from this original painting back to the university to build the university even further."
This all came about last October when Torres invited Kinkade to Columbia to plan future Thomas Kinkade Masterpiece homes, homes based off of Kinkade's artwork, but they got a little side tracked.
"We were actually walking through the campus, and Matt was giving him a tour of the campus at night and Tom stopped and all of a sudden we turned around and he was gone," Torres said. "He was standing there looking up at the columns."
He liked it so much he had to grab a canvas and brush. Architect Rann Haight stood next to him the entire time.
"It was a rainy day and we had a tent over his head and people didn't know who he was. They just thought he was some guy that was out there slapping paint," Haight said. "Within about 2 hours, he had it roughed in and within 3 hours, he said 'I'm done here.'"
This is Kinkade's first painting of a college campus.