Folk Art Gallery
Est. 1984 - Barbara C. Brogdon Prop.

Cell (706) 878-8100

Jim Sudduth
with Toto on porch


Born: March 10, 1910
Alabama
Died: September 2nd, 2007

 

Jim Sudduth, Alabama mud painter, is the epitome of the true folk artist. He was undoubtedly self-taught. Few artists have had such a lengthy career. Jim's mother was a Native American who gathered plants for medicinal purposes. His first painting was done as a little boy while out with his mother on a gathering trip. He mixed mud with honey and painted on a stump.

Sudduth married in the 1940's. He and his wife, Ethel, worked for most of their lives on area farms. They had no children. After moving to town in the 1950's he did odd jobs as a gardener. After his wife died, his constant companion was his snow white Shih-Tzu, To-To. Sudduth painted on plywood using different colors of mud, Indian "dye rocks", plants, sugar,Coco-Cola, molasses and house paint. He started selling his paintings at shows in the 1960's. He appeared on the Today Show in 1980. Sudduth was also known as a blues musician who performed at the Smithsonian Institution's bicentennial Festival of American Folk Life in 1976.

Jim painted with his finger and often said " When I die, the brush dies."

Sudduth died at a nursing home in Alabama Sept. 2, 2007 at the age of 97.

 

See:Museum of American Folk Art Encyclopedia of Twentieth-Century American Folk Art and Artists.

See:Museum of American Folk Art Encyclopedia of Twentieth-Century American Folk Art and Artists.