Sunday, January 26, 2014

Howard Finster's Paradise Gardens, Georgia

On New Year's Eve, my in-laws, wife, and I (plus baby!) drove an hour south of Chattanooga, TN, to see Howard Finster's Paradise Gardens in Georgia.  The Rev. Howard Finster is widely considered the most influential and famous folk artist of the 20th century.  He co-designed the cover to one of my all-time favorite albums, appeared on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, and preached the Good Word to the masses through his eclectic, kooky, and unorthodox artwork.  His artwork can be found in prestigious art museums across America (especially the High Museum in Atlanta).  Paradise Gardens is a bit similar to the Watts Towers in Los Angeles, in that they are both fashioned out of recycled parts gathered by an eccentric individual.

Consider this blog post to be a "photo dump" of sorts, as I'm not going to bother labeling each picture.  Some of the art featured below is fan art that Howard Finster put up himself on his property, while most of the art and buildings are of his own personal design.  There were many oddities to behold, like a house of mirrors and a coffin containing an unidentified body.  All four of us (and even the baby!) really enjoyed our visit, and would recommend it to anyone in the area.