Paul Lancaster


Paul Lancaster was born in Lobelville,Tennessee in 1930 and resides in Nashville. Without any art education, Lancaster began to paint about 1959 and has gained increasing recognition for his creations. His works are in many private collections as well as the permanent collections of the Smithsonian, American Visionary Art Museum, Reece Museum. Hickory Art Museum, Parrish Museum and University of Virginia collection .  Lancaster's early works had more primitive qualities and appeared full of fantasy. His work grew exceptionally so that many cannot believe he is self taught. He has worked with most all media available to the painter. Lancaster has even taught himself how to create etchings. This graphics work has proven significant for it is in his etchings that his great facility for the drawn line and subtle color can be fully accomplished.

Paul was a simple man, quiet and modest.  He was part Cherokee Indian which contributed to his personality and is clearly reflected in his work. One could easily see his works as "visions" of a beautiful life deeply rich in the wonders of nature.  He belonged to the outdoorsand his works always belonged to nature and the spiritual. The subjects of his work are the forest, woods and streams. Figures are in his works but they may, in many works, seem unimportant, helpful for proportion but not always essential to the presentation. When he did include figures they are usually female, always beautiful, often exotic. Working strictly
from imagination, he often animated his trees and rocks suggesting animal or human forms.  His visions were peaceful and quiet, almost fairy tale pretty and idealistic. Lancaster was a true
self-taught artist in every respect--his knowledge and technique are natural gifts not academic. His skills have been honed over fifty plus years of work. While his style  ranged
from the simple to extraordinarily complex, it is always innocent and honest. In this sense,  he was great rather than good.  “Paul Lancaster: Immersed in Nature” was published in 2009
and described his life and his art.  Lancaster died on June 18, 2019