Haynes Galleries presents
“Everett Raymond Kinstler: An American Legend”
to December 31, 2019

FRANKLIN— To celebrate the life, art, and legacy of artist Everett Raymond Kinstler, Haynes Galleries is presenting “Everett Raymond Kinstler: An American Legend.” The exhibition features the seldom seen movie and celebrity paintings Kinstler created during his long and active career. The exhibition is now on view at Haynes Galleries just outside of Nashville.

Kinstler, who passed earlier this year in May at the age of 92, was a prolific artist during his career. After dropping out of high school Kinstler began illustrating comic books and western sagas. Eventually he moved onto magazine and book cover illustrations, and later portraits. He was soon in demand for those and began to attract marquee names. Celebrities and prominent sports figures became regular clients.

Then came the presidential portraits. Nixon was his first followed by Ford, Carter, Clinton, Reagan, and both Bushes. Kinstler’s portraits of Reagan and Ford are in fact the official presidential portraits and are kept at the White House. In Washington, D.C., the National Portrait Gallery has 84 artworks by Kinstler in their collection.

But while creating the portraits that earned him loyal admirers and clients for decades, Kinstler was also painting his Movie and Celebrity series.

About the series he once said “I wanted to get a feeling as best I could of those particular eras. What I like about the Movie Series is that it’s been totally mine. They’re going to find these in my studio when I’m long gone and no one is going to know what to do with them. And I’m having fun doing it. And that’s been the key to this.”

The Movie Series compiles thematically similar images and poses from various movies into single compositions. There’s Marilyn with the faces and names of classic Hollywood beauties including Marilyn Monroe in her iconic white dress from “The Seven Year Itch” in the center. With a color palette of deep blues and golds & yellows, the painting seems to shimmer. By contrast, the palette of Before Color, featuring just a few of the most known actors from pre-technicolor cinema, is muted. But the collage-like arrangement— Chaplin’s mustachioed face here, Bogart in his trench coat there, Harlow in a stunning gown at center, with elements that resemble film strips— keep the eye moving from one interesting portion to the next.

The Celebrity portraits are more nuanced, personality capturing creations. It’s obvious Kinstler spent a great deal of time with each sitter, with a dignified Katherine Hepburn, Carol Burnett with a hint of smirk, Christopher Plummer in character as King Lear. They vary in intensity and tone depending on the person, and each has Kinstler’s tell-tale vigor in its brushstroke.

The exhibition was curated by Haynes Galleries founder Gary R. Haynes who knew Kinstler well. “I knew Mr. Kinstler for many years. He was a great teacher to me, not just in art but he taught me many lessons about life. He had the best stories and told them with great flair. But most importantly, he was my friend. Showing the community my friend’s artwork, especially these that not many people know about, is a wonderful way to honor his life and keep his spirit going.”