Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Quiet Tribute to a Great Artist

My mother died a few years ago. She was a great artist. Her name was Sultana Hanniford. She signed her work as S. Hanniford. My mom was a quiet, shy person. She was the former president of the Lyme Art Association and displayed in their gallery as well as the Mystic Seaport Gallery and many others. She painted primarily maritime scenes in oil. My father was entirely devoted to her. He gave me some of her art supplies, and I thought about it. I considered being an artist when I was a kid and following her to outdoor art shows and galleries in the Northeastern United States. But I'm a writer right down to my toes. So I didn't know what to do until today. I took the collection of unused watercolor pads and the expensive blocks of art paper to the university where I work and into the hall where the art classes are. I put up a sign: Free Art Supplies. I knew my mom would want artists to have them. By two o'clock, they were all gone. May the artists that found them today be blessed with great art. May their art inspire others, just as the work of Sultana Hanniford does.