The Art of Charley, Noah and Hazel Kinney
Hazel Kinney was born in 1929 in Mason County, Kentucky, and married Noah Kinney in 1960. She lived with the Kinney brothers on their farm in Toller Hollow until Noah’s death in 1991. Hazel began painting in the late 1980s and has pursued her art more seriously since the deaths of Charles and Noah Kinney. Charles and Noah were both renown artists Her earliest drawings were made on scraps of lumber, and she continues to draw on anything she can find, including rocks. Hazel mixes a range of materials including watercolor, felt markers, pens, colored pencil, and oil pastels on poster board, paper, and wood panels. Her subjects include those topics most familiar to her – Bible stories and country life in Appalachia. With little concern for conventional perspective, her paintings often depict scenes where dogs, cats, birds, and fish appear larger than their human companions. Her bold compositions and use of color complement the simplicity of style that makes her work so engaging. Hazel Kinney’s art sells for hundreds of dollars
The Kinney brothers, Charley and Noah, who were born and lived all their lives on the family farm in Toller Hollow in Lewis County, produced some of the most interesting depictions of animals in Kentucky art.
While both Charley (1906-1991) and Noah (1912-1991) did a lot of drawing as children, it wasn't until much later that they began making art with greater purpose. In the early 1970s, Charley painted on window shades, depicting desert landscapes filled with animals. He also used modeling clay to create figures such as ducks and sheep.
At about the same time, Noah also began making art. His first piece is reported to have been a small saddle for a toy horse, but his widow, Hazel, believes that his first animal carvings may have been of various pet dogs the couple owned. "He just loved dogs," she says. "We always had all kinds of dogs lying around."
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