God Bless You All – Howard Finster

by Elouise


Click on painting
to see the following text in
Howard Finster’s own hand.
The painting is titled “God Bless You All.”

* * *

Visions of Other Worlds

My troubles
came by
not animels

Creatures who
know me
They love

is worth
it all

Howard. 1947

3:18: past
Nov. 21 1985

by Howard
Finster from God.

4000.905 work
of Art.

* * *

I could spend hours looking at this fanciful, charming vision and self-portrait. As a child I used to lie on my back gazing at the clouds, identifying hidden pictures and even stories in them.

Of all the exquisite detail in this painting, my eyes keep returning to the clouds. Blobs of white paint from Howard Finster’s brush. Each different, turned into distinct personalities with a few tiny strokes of black paint and an occasional everyday angel hitching a ride!

Howard Finster (1916 – 2001) was a Deep South Baptist preacher with a vision. God told him to spread the gospel by painting 5000 works of art. By the time of his death he had painted many more than 5000. The number at the end of the list above is his way of cataloging each painting. Note also the exact time of day and date on which this fabulous piece was completed.

Somehow Howard Finster put together a calling from God, the direct yet profound vision of a child, and a sometimes charming if not captivating invitation to meet our Maker. His work included a theme park for his sculpture, and designing record albums for R.E.M. and Talking Heads, among others. For more about this colorful, complex man click here.

Howard Finster was committed to finding his own somewhat eccentric way, filled with grace and truth. It’s there. You might have to ponder a bit. Yet it’s all right there. At least in this painting.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 17 March 2015
Photo by DAFraser, July 2012

Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Colorado