Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

You have to outlive the b——ds to get your just due

Posted by Charles II on July 24, 2008

A work by Frank Calloway

A work by Frank Calloway

David Usborne, London Independent:

It has taken a while, but the art world in the United States is starting to notice Frank Calloway. A muralist who toils daily with felt pens and crayons over scrolls of butcher’s paper, he has a perspective that by any standard is unique. His work, in fact, is a kind of archaeology, an exploration of an America long vanished.

Any investigation of the life of Calloway himself also adds intrigue to appreciation of his works. He has lived since 1952 in a variety of state mental hospitals in his native Alabama. That’s half of his lifetime. And therein is the other astonishing detail. Yes, you have done the sums right – Calloway is 112 years old…

They offer a glimpse back to the agrarian Deep South that Calloway remembers from the days of his youth in the early 20th century. He conjures wheezing steam tractors, old-fashioned cranes and farm animals being loaded into wagons. For years,


One Response to “You have to outlive the b——ds to get your just due”

  1. Mr. Calloway’s probably old enough to remember the tail end of the great panorama period in 19th century art and entertainment. Panoramas, especially moving ones, were very popular because in the days before motion-picture film, they were a colorful way to show pictures of a particular locale to a mass audience. Panoramas may well have hung around into the 20th century in his part of Alabama.

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