painting of Alabama by Marla Kenney
I want my students to feel a sense of pride in their Alabama roots; that here they can dream big and be whatever they can imagine. They can even become a successful ARTIST in their home state! The old adage referring to the "starving artist" need not apply in this day and age...

We have some very famous artists from Alabama, who have work exhibited in the Smithsonean Museum in Washington D.C. and in galleries all over the world.  From Frank Fleming's sculptures to Gee's Bend quilts, to Robin Wade furniture and Samuel Mockbee's Rural Studio, our Alabama artists have gained much prestige! Also, our self-taught artists are internationally known for their unique brand of visual communication. There's the late Jerry Brown, our 9th generation potter who was one of the few artists who still used a mule to process his clay! Then, we have Don Stewart, the only professional artist I know of who used to be a medical doctor (surgeon, to be exact!). Alabama artists are gaining ground!

I recently went on a search to find local artists (in the hopes of someday inviting them to my classroom!) and found folks all over the state who happen to be making a living doing what they love - creating everything from pottery to vine furniture to leather bags to fine art canvas paintings.

This week, my middle school students are learning about careers in art (and aesthetics!) via genuine Alabama artists: below is a list of over 100 videos I found online. (They are short clips unless otherwise noted.) The majority of these videos feature current artists, but there are a few historical ones. Some of these artists are famous, some are not. This list is meant to be an inspirational one - where students can compare and contrast the artists' creative use of a variety of media, where they can discuss the difference between fine art and craft or the difference between a classically trained artist and a self-taught artist. 

This is just a sampling (not a comprehensive list) of many wonderful artists from our state, and I am updating the list as I find great videos. They are in no particular order except for the artists' chosen medium. Please let me know if you find another one to add to the list!  

(If you share these with your students, please preview them to be sure of appropriate content/advertisements. I have previewed all videos and none contain inappropriate content unless otherwise noted, but online media sources sometimes have advertisements that are not suitable for the classroom - be careful!) 



photo credit: rickytrioneart.com
Ricky Trione, Fairhope, Alabama 

photo credit: Dori DeCamillis

photo credit art net.com

photo credit Mobile Bay Magazine
internationally known painter and mixed media artist who was mentored by Salvador Dali, Fairhope, Alabama 
  • Monoco interview (in French) - I chose this video clip because Nall can be seen working in his studio along with his beautiful paintings of flowers framed in mosaics, Youtube
  • An Aha Moment, Youtube
  • artist website biography
  • http://www.octaviaartgallery.com/artists/nall
  • http://blog.chron.com/enlightenedtravel/2012/12/nall-alabamas-artist-extraordinaire/
  • http://folkart.org/mag/charlie-lucas-nall

photo credit: MMFA

Gary Chapman, Birmingham

  • Thomas Andrew, Mountain Brook, Alabama, Into the Wild, time lapse painting - arbitrary color elephant on black roofing tar paper, Youtube, Making History, time lapse painting of American Pharoah winning the Triple Crown, Youtube, Surrender, time lapse painting of an angel, Youtube, Treat Art As A Business, how to market your artwork and be a successful artist

  • David Nichols, (fine art canvas painter; landscapes and "Thin Folk,"), Birmingham, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Dale KenningtonInterview with Montgomery Museum of Fine Artbiography on dalekennington.com, realistic figurative and symbolic paintings, (her work is part of the permanent collection at the Montgomery Museum of Art and she has exhibited in dozens of art museums.)
  • Lois Wilson, (1905 - 1980), historic and highly trained painter of found objects, Fayette, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter," website biography
  • Melissa Meeks, Coke Art, , (commercial mural restoration by fine artist Melissa Meeks), Moulton, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Billy Mack SteeleWatercolor ArtistGadsen, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"


photo credit: dsart.com

  • Don Stewart; artist and author, keynote speaker for the 2015 Visual Arts Achievement Program, Alabama State Council on the Arts, Youtube, dsart.com
Interview With Don Stewart, Focus At Four, ABC 33-40, Youtube
Absolutely Alabama Interview

  • Barry Woodward, portrait artist, Talladega, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter,"


  • Debra Riffe, linoleum and woodblock prints, Alabama News Center


photo credit: Brothers Handmade

photo credit; Absolutely Alabama


  • Vulcan, largest cast iron statue, Birmingham, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

photo credit: Smithsonean Museum of American Art

photo credit nelsongriceart.com

photo credit: artlovesport.com

  • Steve DavisSunheart Metalworks, Kentuck Artist Colony, Northport, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Ronald Godwin, metal sculptor, Brundidge, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Calvin MaconThe Art of Wood and Stone, Huffman, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter," calvinemacon.com
  • Ira Chaffin, carousel horses by professional sculptor, Birmingham, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

photo credit: Smithsonean American Art Museum
  • Thornton Dial, Artist Profile, (1928- 2016), Bessemer, Alabama, Youtube, Mr. Dial Has Something To Say, (1 hour - recommended for middle and high school) Alabama Public Television Documentary (one use of a mild expletive half-way through the video), Alabama Lost a True, Southern Genius This Week, article by Gail Andrews, "Numerous museums hold Dial’s work in their collections, including the Whitney Museum and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., and the Harvard Art Museums in Cambridge, Massachusetts." Art News

  • Doug Baulos, mixed media, sculpture, drawing, book arts, artist website, biography at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, "Artist, poet, assistant professor at The University of Alabama at Birmingham;collections Museum of Modern Art (NYC), The J. Paul Getty Museum (LA), The Birmingham Museum of Art (BHM); exhibitions:  New Orleans Contemporary Arts Center (NOLA), Central Booking (NYC), Alabama Civil Rights Museum (Bham), Susan Hensel Gallery (MPLS)," the Foundation Gallery (New Orleans)

photo credit: beckymorganart.com

  • Cal Breed, Ft. Payne, Alabama
     Cal Breed, An Introduction,  glass artist, Montgomery       Museum of Fine Art, (first part of three), Youtube
    Orbix Hot Glass, Youtube




blog author with a few of the ladies of Gee's Bend, February 2016

Quiltmakers of Gee's Bend, Alabama, Youtube (historical information at the Encyclopedia of Alabama)



  • Biscuit Leather, Becky Stayner, (handmade leather bags), Homewood, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Gaskin Harnesses, Kevin Gaskin, (handmade leather horse harnesses), Haleyville, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

  • Bud RogersOrnament Carver, lathe, Gulf Coast, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Santa Jack Yorkcane carver, Anniston, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Randy Longchest craftsman, Fruithurst, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter," Facebook page
  • Corey Wordenchainsaw carving, "Beneath the Bark", Titus, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter," Facebook page 
  • Jim HughesWood Craft and Turnings, Coker, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Don PhillipsTallapoosa River Crafts, (turned bowls, knife handles, game calls), Delta, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Peco Forsman, museum quality models of buildings, Silverhill, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Peggy and Howard MayoGourds, (decorative carved gourds), Calhoun County, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Organic VesselsMissy Miles (art gourds), Vernon Williams (turned bowls), Hamilton, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Lexi Fitch, Reclaimed, various items made with barn wood, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Board ArtistMichael Garber, various items made out of old pallets, Florence, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

  • Cake EffectKomeh Ottison, Homewood, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Ana Kelly, Food Stylist, Gallant, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

  • Concrete Botanicals,  Laura Cutchin, (decorative concrete leaves), Eufala, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Sneaker Head, Charlotte and Robin Cummings, Shoe Collection (new and historic shoes, includes Forest Gump's shoes), Hanceville, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • The Doll Maker, Jackie Stevens, Cook Springs, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • George's Broom Closet, George Jones, Florence, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • The Car Man (Antique Collection), Cotton Alexander, Boaz, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Susan Turner, Former elementary teacher paints floorcloths and furniture, New Market, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter" 
  • Laurie Banes, American flag artist, pastel, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Billy Hoffman & Al Eastridge, Earth's Treasures, rock jewelry, Opelika, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"
  • Wes Bakerantique book binder, Anniston, Alabama, "Absolutely Alabama With Fred Hunter"

*For a more complete listing of influential/historical artists, designers, and architects from Alabama, check out the "Encyclopedia of Alabama, Arts and Literature." 

Another resource for current working artists in Alabama is on the Alabama Art Supply webpage: Alabama Artists.

Below is a list of important Alabama artists that I am still researching for good videos:

article by Mrs. Anna Nichols


Sandy Mann said...

SANDY MANN Winner of one of the two Marshall County Foundation for Fine Arts awards 4-16-2016, the pc that won "eternal walk" will be a permenant pc at the Guntersville musuem ran by Julie Patton. Sandy is a resident artist at Artist on the Bluff in Hoover which is ran by Linda Williams.


I just added you to the list - thank you for your comment! I enjoyed seeing your lovely paintings on your website and I found one Youtube video featuring Sandy Mann. Do you have any online interviews I could add?

Anonymous said...

My current website is www.dougbaulos.com


Thank you! I just changed the link.